I received a free physical copy of this book from the publishers in exchange for an honest review.
Alex Locke is desperately trying to hold onto the disparate threads of the complex web of time that he has created. He travels to the First World War, living through the horrors of trench warfare in order to befriend a young soldier crucial to his story; then to the 1930s to uncover the secrets of a mysterious stage magician. He moves back and forth in time, always with the strange and terrifying Dark Man on his heels, gradually getting closer to uncovering the true nature of his destiny with the obsidian heart.
Following on from The Society of Blood, The Wraiths of War is the third and final novel in the Obsidian Hearts series that sees the reader follow our main protagonist, Alex Locke, as he attempts to find his missing daughter, uncover the secrets behind the obsidian heart, and figure out why he has been chosen to travel back and forth in time. The Wraiths of War brings this series to its conclusion, answering all those questions you’ve been asking yourself since the beginning, and uncovering the truth behind the Dark Man and Alex Locke’s involvement with the Wolves of London.
I have to admit that I found The Wraiths of War my favourite out of the three books. I found myself more drawn to this final novel as all of my questions were answered and everything finally made a lot of sense. This whole series can be a bit confusing at times with the time travelling and the many variations of Alex Locke turning up in different time periods at different ages. In this final novel, Locke continues to question his involvement and frequently comments on the consequences of his actions should he just let time continue without his involvement. It also brings into question the decision between what is right and wrong when he brings Frank into the future and away from his untimely death in World War One.
Yet again, Morris brings to this novel a lot of research though, in this case, with World War One. We are taken to prominent battlefields and made aware of the trench systems on both sides of the war, as well as given an insight into the overall morale on both sides. This is a key part of this series that I really enjoyed: the realism that is portrayed through Morris’s research into these time periods. It also shows the naivety of people, such as myself, who aren’t aware of some of the specifics from these periods which he also instills into Alex Locke who also didn’t fully understand the ways of living at those times.
I really loved the concept of this series and it is one I would recommend to fans of Mark A. Latham and his Apollonian Case Files series (and vice versa). I found many similarities between the two which gave me a nice sense of nostalgia for that series.