Format: Hardcover, 400 pages
Release Date: June 12, 2014
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian
Following the cliffhanger ending of Phoenix, Natalie finds herself separated from Ash and unexpectedly reunited with her parents, including the father she thought was dead. But she can only think of Ash. She hasn't heard a word of him since she and Elijah were brought to the underground headquarters of the Sentry Rebellion. But she vows to find him. Ash, meanwhile is back in Black City; it's the perfect place to hide from the Sentry government. But not for long. He won't give up on Natalie or bringing an end to the terrible reign of Purian Rose. A pulse-racing end to an exciting series.
"It's easy to hate. The true test of our hearts is to forgive."
Wings ends the Black City trilogy tying up loose ends, introducing a key figure's background and his diabolical plans, while bringing an end to Natalie Buchanan and Ash Fisher journey that all started in Black City. When last we left the Black City series, Natalie was taken away from Ash by Garrick, along with Elijah, and brought to a Sentry Rebellion Headquarters where she got a shocking surprise.
The surprise just happens to be that her father, General Jonathan Buchanan, who she told was dead, is actually very much alive. Yet another surprise is that her mother, Emissary Siobhán Buchanan, is alongside, and helping the Rebellion. Natalie is also recovering from her exposure to the Wrath virus, and being told that finding Ash is not a priority. Like that will stop true love from being together. Silly adults.
Meanwhile, Ash, Ace, Marcel and captive Sebastian, linger in Black City hiding away from Purian Rose's Sentries while trying to find a weapon, Ora, said to be able to defeat Rose. Ash's desire to end the war, while finding his missing aunt, and toppling Rose once and for-all, leads him to the territory called the Tenth, and even more shocking and devastating revelations. But, on the plus side, Natalie, Beetle, Day, Roach and Elijah reunite with Ash and learn the truth behind Rose's plans.
I think what Wings did well, was let readers in on what made a key figure grow into the megalomaniac he is today. Right from the start, Richards lays out a character named Edmund's background, his struggles to hide his uniqueness, and the reason why he is a total lunatic. She intermixes his struggles from 30 years ago, with first person narratives by both Natalie and Ash. Honestly, I don't think anyone will walk away from his narrative and not feel a bit emotional for what he went through, and the losses he suffered.
I will say this without spoiling anything, I would not have been shocked or surprised had Richards killed off a major character. Knowing full well the challenges that both Ash and Natalie face, especially with finding a cure for her condition and living through their showdown with Rose, could have gone either way. It wouldn't be the first time, nor the last that an author, Veronica Roth, chose to subdue her character instead of giving them a HEA.
In this day and age, you should expect more than just a HEA for your favorite characters. You should expect a bit of letdown, and unhappiness because that is what life is. I think that Roth showed that you can eliminate a main character, even though some readers ended up burning her book in effigy. But, I do like the fact that Richards didn't put anyone between the love that Ash truly had for Natalie. I loved that nobody could stand in the way of them being together and finding happiness, not even Natalie's parents.
Lots of new and returning characters in Wings, along with a devastating betrayal I honestly should have saw coming. My only regret is that I would have liked to see Natalie kill a few more people, especially Sebastian for what he did to her sister, but I can live with the ending. I can almost forgive her parents who lied and hid secrets from her and tried to separate her from Ash. But, I also think that Natalie's mom Siobhán Buchannan has a whole lot of things to make up for.
I can forgive Evangeline who really did a 180 in how her character stood out and did a very unselfish thing when things looked bleak for the rebellion. I'll even respect the authors choice of love interest. I love Day and Beetle and Roach and even Elijah who is just a kitty cat. Day has been one of my favorites right from the very beginning, and in this episode, she rises to the occasion more than a few times. I loved Elijah because even though Natalie was in love with Ash, he didn't run away and act the fool. He stood by her side through the good times and bad.
Wings is possibly my favorite story of the trilogy because we finally see an end game, some real thrilling action scenes, and perhaps a glimmer of a hopeful future to come without humans, darklings, Lupine and others at each others throats all the time. It is often times hard for me to write a review for a final book in a series, because more times than naught, I have been left disappointed and dissatisfied at how things are wrapped up. Like I said, I am satisfied at how Richards wrapped up this trilogy.