Posts Tagged ‘derek landy’

Skulduggery Pleasant: The Dying of the Light – Derek Landy

It is August 28th 2014.

I have just finished the last Skulduggery Pleasant book.

I’m not posting this for a while, because it contains spoilers, and I want to give people some time to read it. But I have some thoughts that I need to get out of my head. This is not a review of sorts, it’s just me babbling a little.

Let me just preface this by saying that I liked this book, and I love this series. It is fun, epic, and brilliantly plotted with fantastic continuity. The characters are well-developed and the humour is fabulous and you should all read it read it read it. The Dying of the Light was brilliant, and probably deserving of a full starred rating, but I will still touch on stuff that I personally (and this may just be me) thought could be improved.

The Supposed Tears

Perhaps my heart is made of steel, perhaps there is something wrong with me, but that ending was not nearly as sad as we were led to believe. Yes, it was shocking. And perhaps when we talk about the pain that book causes we talk about how we are constantly misled by the author to believe certain tragedies occur that actually don’t.

It was definitely clever, and I applaud it for that, but perhaps too easy. There is so much potential for new story, and perhaps that is done on purpose for extra stories/new books to come in the future, but at the moment, I don’t feel much conclusion. I want to know where our characters really ended up after the battle.

But maybe I’m just in denial of the series ending. I’m not sure yet.

The Ending

I was pretty much convinced that it was the most perfect book in existence, but then the ending happened, and I don’t know, it irked me. It must have irked me personally, as I know it didn’t annoy a lot of people. But honestly, and here’s the blunt truth of it all, Valkyrie and Skulduggery, as a romantic relationship, makes me uncomfortable.

He is old. Really old. That isn’t my problem with their relationship, though. He is far more mature than her. He is, mentally, an adult. He had a wife and kids. He has been through a whole lot more than she has, because of age and experience and just life in general. His mental age is around thirty, in my mind.

She is a teenage girl. She has had one boyfriend her entire life, and that wasn’t a very serious boyfriend either. She is not experienced. Yes, she’s gone through a lot of physical and emotional pain, but mentally, she is eighteen. She acts eighteen. For all intents and purposes, she is eighteen.

And there is my problem with the relationship. He is too old for her. He’s an adult, and has been for a long time, and she’s barely there.

So that’s why I don’t like the ending. I know not everyone feels that way, and I know opinions on characters’ maturity and whatnot differ, but that’s how I read it. I don’t know if it was planned from the beginning, or if it was implemented once Derek Landy saw the massive support in the Valduggery fandom. Giving romance to a relationship that 98% of your fanbase supports is a sure way to get approval on your book, and I am sure that I’m only annoyed by this because I’ve been in that 2% for years. I could see the path being laid down towards this particular relationship and I still chose to ignore it. But it’s far too late and I’m far too stubborn to change my mind now.

The Fourth Wall

While I don’t think references to the fans is a bad thing, I’ve never been particularly fond of it, either. I think it depends on the reference, and whether it is believable or not. But sometimes, when I can just feel an author throwing in a joke or a line that I know is there to make people go “oh look! the thing! he said the thing!”, it pulls me out of the world. Not breaking the fourth wall, but maybe shaking it. This all depends on context. Sometimes the little nods were perfect, more than perfect, and sometimes they threw me off a bit.


This is a series that has never shied away from killing off characters. This ending reminded me that I was truly reading a middle-grade series.

I was expecting more death. Maybe I am too jaded that way. But if you’r going to promise for a book to tear out your heart, then you better live up to it.


Yes, a little disappointing. But it’s definitely personal problems that are influencing this choice. The book’s execution was very good, and the plot was good, and everything was very fun and cool and action-y. I put too many expectations on this book, but that’s what happens when its the ninth one. I was expecting more conclusion, more character development, and there’s only so much one can plausibly do.

Still my favourite middle-grade series though. Well, unless Blood of Olympus is completely utterly fabulous.

Skulduggery Pleasant: The Dying of the Light (Cover) – Derek Landy

This is the most exciting cover reveal ever.


I don’t think I even need to say what I am feeling except HOLY WAFFLES GUYS I AM SO EXCITED.

And as the charred, dismembered skeleton head leaks smoke from the eye sockets how can you not say that this cover is the best thing to ever hit the SP series?

One more thing: If you try to contact me on the 28th August 2014, know that I will not answer, I will probably skip food and sleep to finish this book and then I will probably collapse. And it will be so worth it.

Skulduggery Pleasant: Last Stand of Dead Men (Back Cover) – Derek Landy

I just want to say how FREAKING AWESOME THIS IS.

I am like 80% sure that is Madame Mist, looking freaking awesome and terrifying at the same.

All those spiders are really not helping how creepy this is. Also the lack of face. And the fact that she looks like a rotting dementor who will suck out your soul with her evil spidery fangs.

And with those happy thoughts, I leave you.

Skulduggery Pleasant: Last Stand of Dead Men (Cover) – Derek Landy

I have made the cover flipping huge for your viewing pleasure.

And damn that is a long title; I think we’re just going to refer to it as SP8 from now on.

But seriously, look how flipping badass this book is going to be. The fire and possibly dead Valkyrie and rubble of the world burned to pieces.Not to mention, Skulduggery looks like he’s lowering Valkyrie down (or what if it’s the REFLECTION?), like he’s laying her down to rest, like he’s holding a freaking corpse. And somehow they managed to put emotion on a skeletal face. And that title? Are they talking about Skulduggery’s last stand? What is going on? Why is that title so freaking badass?


Eccentric, clever mad man who’s really old and has one liners; is really goofy but has this dark, hidden past with a dangerous side takes smart, young, sarcastic girl around on adventures and they save the world together.

This is going to be freaking awesome. Apocalypse and magic showdowns (and hopefully Tanith and Fletcher and China back because I missed them oh so much in the 7th book). I’m hoping this is going to be my favourite yet of the SP series.



(On a separate note, I’m begging for a Skulduggery Pleasant TV Series, with each series/season (depending on where you’re from) on the three trilogies in the book series. And I want it animated; like Rise of the Guardians style, because if you saw that movie you know what I mean by the animation being completely gorgeous. The sand. The ice. The detail. Flipping beautiful. I will settle for live action though, if they’re able to do Skulduggery without making him look like a funky CGI green screen photoshopped insert.)

Skulduggery Pleasant: Kingdom of the Wicked – Derek Landy

Lots and lots and lots of spoilers. There’s too much to talk about that I can’t help it.


So, I finished Skulduggery Pleasant: Kingdom of the Wicked at about 1am this morning. And let me just say.






So, if you’ve not read Skulduggery Pleasant, then basically Skeleton Detective + Not-So-Normal Girl = lots of awesome.



So now everyone is getting magic, and then there are these kids who are also psychos who are really powerful, plus Argeddion and alternate dimensions.






The Summary

Ok, the official summary wasn’t bad, but for a person that has never read the Skulduggery Pleasant books and doesn’t know the awesomeness that is Derek Landy, they might be unsure of it.

“Magic is a disease.

Across the land, normal people are suddenly developing wild and unstable powers. Infected by a rare strain of magic, they are unwittingly endangering their own lives and the lives of the people around them. Terrified and confused, their only hope lies with the Sanctuary. Skulduggery Pleasant and Valkyrie Cain are needed now more than ever.

And then there’s the small matter of Kitana. A normal teenage girl who, along with her normal teenage friends, becomes infected. Becomes powerful. Becomes corrupted. Wielding the magic of gods, they’re set to tear the city apart unless someone stands up against them.

Looks like it’s going to be another one of those days…”

Kitana’s mention made me go, “oh no.”. Believe me, I have so much faith in Derek Landy to write amazing characters and books, but there was this tiny nagging feeling in my head saying:

“What if this is like Dylan from Maximum Ride? Oh god, what if Kitana is a Dylan character?”

It just shows that I should trust authors more.

The Eighth Book

I swear, yesterday/this morning was so cruel. First, Pond Life part 5 ripped out my heart and crushed it into smithereens in the space of a minute and a half, and then that ending decided to do the same, except it was not the same type of ending.

You are not going to believe me when I say this, but let’s go. It was worse than the Son of Neptune ending.

I know.

It’s hard to compare, because they’re very different endings. Son of Neptune is the promise that everything is going to be good and amazing and so happy and just when it’s about to get amazing and happy and rainbows and cake and hugs, it just ends.

And you’re just sitting there going “WHERE IS THE NEXT PAGE?????”

This book, though. This was cruel.

Right at the end, there is the promise of something so happy and so good happening and then suddenly _____ dies and you’re like oh damn, they are in trouble. Oh god what are they going to do? This is bad. This is bad.

Oh god.

And then.




I don’t know how to even.

I’ll talk about this in the pros, because I’m getting sidetracked, but here’s what you need to know. I was completely terrified and surprised and shocked and screaming with my hand over my mouth.

For those who’ve read it, I understand your pain. Oh man, I understand it.

For those who haven’t. Good luck. You’re going to need it.




He is my favourite character and I wanted him and Valkyrie to just get together and get married and have kids and sure, they didn’t really make a great couple but Valkyrie can grow up and realise that she is in love with Fletcher, even though she really isn’t but I don’t care. I WAITED TWO ENTIRE BOOKS FOR YOU TO GET TOGETHER AND WHEN YOU FINALLY DID ALL YOU DO IS CHEAT AND BREAK UP.


He only appeared in one chapter. Every time they mentioned getting a teleporter, I was waiting for them to mention Fletcher or find an alternate dimension version of Fletcher.

And he got a girlfriend.


URGH. I should not care so much about fictional characters.

Seriously, though, it’s not a con. It’s just me being weird.


I missed her. So much.

But I know she’s probably not appeared because she’s going to be awesome in the next one, but I still missed her. So much.


How do I even begin this.

Oh, as always. Amazing writing style. Amazing amazing amazing amazing dialogue. Love the recurring characters. Love all the characters. Amazing amazing plot. Amazing setting. The usual.

Ok. Let’s start with the obvious.

Kitana & Co.

I usually don’t want evil characters to die that much. Even Lord Voldemort, who was beyond evil, I still felt bad for. He had a bad past and so on. Even Aaron from The Knife of Never Letting Go wasn’t that bad. Sure I didn’t like him, but I felt bad for him for being such a weirdo.

But not Kitana.

I wanted to punch that stupid…. Ok, I promised I wouldn’t swear so I’m gonna replace this word with Sandwich.

I wanted to punch that stupid sandwich in the face, she was so damn sandwichy.

Like, take Regina George from Mean Girls, times her by a thousand, then make her a complete murdering psychopath. Then add more sandwichyness and really really really powerful magic powers. Ta Dah, welcome Kitana.

The fact that they were powerful without trying as well, and battling these sorcerers who had a ton of power and trained for years and years, and they thought they were ultra special and really stuck up and sandwichy.

But the thing is, I didn’t full on hate her when they were killing people. I was thinking, oh maybe they can redeem themselves. Maybe she’s a complete psychopath but I don’t full on hate her.

But the moment I decided she was a Sandwich. WHEN SHE TOOK VALKYRIE’S JACKET. I was like, oh, that sandwich is going down. She turned me into a sadistic sandwich. When Darquesse was beating her up, I was smiling. When she came back to life, I was so annoyed. I kept thinking, oh just die already, sandwich. When Skulduggery became ______ (censored because Yanni is reading the books and I don’t want her to know) , I was like, hell yes, this is getting awesome. Die, Doran, die.

And I thought Doran was pathetic, and Sean was even more pathetic, and Elsie was awesome. I hated how much she defended Sean though, but she was so awesome.

Alternate Dimension


Is there really any other way you can describe it. Everyone in their Alternate Dimension forms were so awesome. Eliza Scorn being completely psycho and so totally different from the calm, collected and beautiful Eliza in the normal world. I think that was my favourite bit.

When Ghastly died in the Alternate Dimension, I couldn’t. I just couldn’t. Ghastly is one of my favourite characters. He’s equal, to Fletcher’s top spot. Though, let’s be honest, quite a lot of people share Fletcher’s top spot. And those who don’t are about a millimetre off.

Which reminds me.


Why do you do this to me, Derek Landy?

Why do you make me want to cry over fictional characters?

Ghastly and Tanith. I just want to hug them and tell them it’s all going to be ok.

If they don’t get together, and if Tanith doesn’t get that remnant out of her by the last book, I will be so distraught.

My poor fangirl heart will probably cease to exist, and I’ll just die from all the feelings.

You are so cruel, Derek, you are so so so cruel.


I think I like Darquesse way too much. Every time she gets out I’m so excited. I’m like, oh yeah. Things are about to get kickass.

And oh yes, are they kickass. Every single scene with Darquesse is awesome, and this is no exception.


I began to love the reflection. Like, seriously love her. She was bypassing Fletcher and Ghastly and Valkyrie and Skulduggery and I didn’t even think that was possible.

Because in the third book, when we found out she was hiding stuff from Valkyrie, I was like, oh damn, this is getting bad. This reflections is going to turn out to take over Valkyrie’s body or something or strangle her in her sleep. But then it turned out that she was turning into one of Valkyrie’s only friends, and she was so awesome, and after she got tortured, and couldn’t scream, but didn’t want Valkyrie to live through that memory, I just wanted to hug her and sob into her shoulder. It was so interesting to see her personality develop and grow and see that she had feelings.





When she __________ (more censoring for Yanni), I swear, I thought I was hallucinating. I read that sentence over two or three times to see if I’d interpreted it wrong, but no, she actually ________. She _____.

My jaw was on the floor.

I mean, sure, make me completely fall in love with a character, then turn her into a psychopath.

And now I have no idea what’s going to happen in the next books. Derek Landy is so good with cliffhangers and twists that I guess I shouldn’t be surprised.

Book 1: Ghastly! Nooo!

Book 2: The Faceless Ones are coming back!??!?!

Book 3: Skulduggery! NOOOOO!

Book 4: She’s Darquesse? SHE’S DARQUESSE!?!!?

Book 5: Tanith! No you can’t do this to Ghastly!

Book 6: Skulduggery. Is _________. But. No. BUT. BUT. BUT. NO.

And now this. And now _____ and the Reflection and ______ is dead and war and the Reflection and Darquesse.

The next book is going to be so freaking awesome.


This is the most important one.

  • “He could wear a fez. Fezzes were cool. Hadn’t someone once said that fezzes were cool? He was pretty sure they had. And they were. They were cool.

If you got that reference, I officially love you.

  • “What?” she asked again.
    He pointed ahead of them. “See that?”
    “What, the snow?”
    “Beyond that.”
    “More snow?”
    “Stop looking at the snow.”
  • “You’ve done what?”
    “I know,” he said. “You’re impressed. You send me out for bread and I come back with a boy. Well, not literally. That would be weird. Even for me.”
  • “He could be a butterfly dreaming he’s a man.”
    “Well, he’s not. He’s a big fat man dreaming he’s a big fat butterfly. What the hell am I supposed to do?”
    There was another hesitation. “I’m not sure. You don’t happen to have a large net handy, do you?”
    “I want to hit him. I want to hit YOU, but I also want to hit him.”


Oh come on, You know what I’m going to give this. You know. 5 shuriken stars. This is officially one of my favourite book series ever. I love it so much. Go read it. NOW.