“Some say the world will end in fire. Some say in ice. From what I’ve tasted of desire, I hold with those who favor fire. But if it had to perish twice, I think I know enough of hate to say that for destruction, ice is also great and would suffice.” ~ Robert Frost (Fire and Ice)
'Last Line 2' by Harper Fox begins with the story of Marina Griffin and Leo South to set up the gypsy prophesy involving their children: Michael South, John Griffin, and Quin Griffin – before it moves on to the present. The stage is set for world annihilation; somehow John and Michael with their superpowers are destined to stop it What they'd rather do is stay at home, on the farm with Quin, and stick their heads in the sand; but when their old boss, James Webb, gives them information of which they weren't aware, which shows them a way to save everyone and get some revenge in the process, they have to act.
Although John and Michael should be enjoying their retirement, they find it difficult to do. The people know what they did before and are looking to them for help as world events through climate change have developed to a critical point. Quin believes in a peaceful resolution, disarmament as a show of good faith instead of aggression. He inadvertently begins a peaceful movement and soon has many followers. According to prophesy, Quin is the fifth child, the one who is to unite them all and bring peace. Quin is not sure how that is to be accomplished, but he trusts his conviction and believes he will be shown the way.
Michael and John return to their hotel room after their meeting with James Webb for their last time being together before embarking on what could very well be a suicide mission. With Michael's command of fire and John's of water, they must defeat Oriel who controls earth and Anzhel who controls air or the world will end. Both men have dreamed about these confrontations and know exactly where to go. Michael slips away from John and heads to the radiation infested tunnels where Oriel is waiting. He hopes by going without John, he will keep him safe, but John knows where Michael is going and why he's going alone. John heads to the place he's dreamed of and encounters Anzhel. Even thought Anzhel tries to disguise himself, John recognizes him. Instead of trying to engage him in mortal combat, John attempts to enlist his help with whatever means he needs to use. Eventually, Anzhel reveals the secret; in the wrong hands, it could mean the end of times.
In this powerful book, Harper uses theosophies and theologies taken from various secular, religious, and cult sources; mixing and matching them to create the needed impact. The use of the four corners, directions, north, south, east and west, and the elements of earth, fire, water, and air are the most recognizable. There are other ancient beliefs and ideologies thrown in which are familiar to me, but I won't even attempt to enumerate, much less explain them. Harper's outstanding characters; her 'way with words'; and the plethora of emotions her writing invokes, makes the experience of reading it well worth the effort. This book can't be read alone. It's important to read 'Last Line', the first book in the series, beforehand in order to understand what's going on. If you are looking for a light read, this is not it, but if you like an intricate, fast-paced story with excitement, adventure, intrigue, good versus evil, saving the world, and a happy ending, then this book may be for you. Thanks, Harper, for the dramatic conclusion to a whirlwind of a story.