Format: Hardcover, 352 pages
Release Date: September 20, 2016
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Lily Proctor has come a long way from the weak, sickly girl she used to be. She has gained power as a witch and a leader, found her way home, chosen to face battle again, and (after losing her first love and being betrayed by her new love) she has learned more about loss and grief than she ever wanted to know.
Thrust once again into a society different from anything they have ever seen, Lily and her coven are determined to find answers―to find a new path to victory, a way to defeat the monstrous Woven without resorting to nuclear weapons or becoming a tyrannical mass murderer like her alternate self, Lillian. But sometimes winning requires sacrifices . . . and when the only clear path to victory lies at Lillian's side, what price will Lily be willing to pay?
Witch's Pyre is the third and final installment in author Josephine Angelini's Worldwalker trilogy. Witch's Pyre picks up right where Firewalker ended. Lily Procter, her alt-world sister Juliet, her alt-world mechanics Tristan & Caleb, friends Breakfast and Una have been dumped off at a place called Bower City by the Hive. They are the only survivors of a cross-country journey that saw fierce battles, painful losses, and an even more painful betrayal that shook Lily's courage and determination to the core.
Lily's group finds themselves guests in a city that seems to be protected by the Warrior sisters, and the Hive. They are the first visitors to the city in 20 years. At first glance, things are peaceful and free of worry. There is virtually no crime since an army of bees ensures that anyone who steps out of line is quickly dealt with. The bees recognize hostility, fear, and aggression. A fact that Lily finds out quickly. There are even soaps that keep the population healthy and living longer than anyone else. If you are one of the selected that is.
They even have a major trade with the rest of the world who has abandoned the east coast to their own vices. But, Lily knows that things are too good to be true, especially after meeting with Grace Bendingtree who runs the city, along with Toshi, Mala, and Ivan. And most distressing of all, if you are one of those who has a willstone, you are not allowed to leave. After being made aware of a secret by Ivan, Lily and her group find themselves being forced to make adjustments to their plans. Adjustments that send them back to Lily's world to regroup and once again being chased by FBI Agent Simms.
While the story is flowing forward, there are spots in the story that are Lillian's memory flashbacks which sort of fills in the gaps for readers so that they are not left wondering what the bloody crikey is happening. Lily and her group must find a way to defeat the Hive and create an unshakable alliance between Outlanders, witches, and Woven in order stop Grace before Lillian destroys the city with her nuclear weapon. Lillian won't settle for anything else than Grace's destruction, especially now that she is dying. Lily must put away her hurt, and her painful losses if she is to survive to the end of this journey.
While Lily and Lillian have connected on a level that Rowan finds disturbing, Lily and Lillian are not even close to being the same person. Lily is more restrained, while Lillian is ambitious to the very core. Lily has come far from the first novel to a person that can use her powers for good, not just to meet some far flung goal that she wants to attain. In the end, I actually found myself feeling a bit for Lillian and what she went through to make her be the way she was written. When the last page is turned, you truly have to wonder if she was actually doing the right thing and not some plan that has no end game but everyone being dead.
Angelini has created a world where there are 13 untouchable cities all protected by walls in the East. The rest of the country, called Outlands, has been abandoned and infested by the Hive, the Pack, and the Pride, among other groups that have no use for humans. Lily has found out that there are a multitude of other universes where things aren't exactly nice and pleasant. This is a series that mixes a bit of fantasy, magic, and science fiction to bring a different take on Salem Witches and Alternative Worlds.