A vast saga of magic, mythology and reincarnation comes to a head in Severance of the Sorcerer, the last entry in Kate Gateley’s ambitious Lost Wells trilogy.
This volume opens with the two series’ protagonists Julia and Domhnall, dealing with the fallout of battle and betrayal. Julia, a linguistics student turned powerful witch, and Dom, scion of Irish kings, have spent lifetimes battling Cassius, the evil “Child of Rome” who has been after them for millennia.
In the two previous books, the battle was waged across continents, as Julia, Dom and their allies struggled to defy ancient prophecies and destroy Cassius’s evil magic. Here, readers find the couple fleeing Cassius’s evil “Wraiths,” malevolent forces intent on rooting them out. They’re still processing their betrayal by Ronan, a druid and Dom’s longtime ally who joined the enemy’s forces in the previous book.
As Julia and Dom seek escape across British Columbia, they must figure out how to reassemble their forces, a coalition that includes seers, magicians and ancient orders, in a final effort to stamp out Cassius’s hold and stem a terrible evil. It’s a battle that hinges on a new prophecy, one that will end with a quest for an ancient weapon and the possibility of redemption.
Gateley reaches her narrative stride in this final entry to the series. The characters have had plenty of space to develop in the previous books, both of which clock in at more than 500 pages, and that room to grow pays off here. The relationship between Julia and Dom, the true weight of Ronan’s betrayal, and other human elements add a compelling element to the magic, action and other features that characterize the series.
The author’s knack for combining ancient history and modern action remains sharp here, and the added depth in characterization and human interactions make the 500-plus page length feel more manageable for casual fantasy fans.
Overall, this is a laudable conclusion to an engaging series.
Also available in hardcover and ebook.