As promised by Icedancer
(review forthcoming) it’s also her biggest play for agency, even as the forces against her true freedom prove stronger and more calculating than she’d guessed. She’s also in her own way: forced into the position of sacrificial lamb, Avalanche
takes time to ask what Lanna is worth to herself.
This, combined with her increasingly heart-warming relationship with Lucas, makes Avalanche Velfman’s most character-driven book yet. Given that Lanna is in seclusion, that seems natural–but the constant action and complications are unexpected and wonderful surprises. There is no shortage of action or plot twists in this book, even as Lanna’s character is fleshed out into the fifth dimension. We learn more about the midlands, too, as Lanna’s concerns stretch ever further from the Flower Hall. Even Chowa, who is mostly absent in the book, gets a fresh look.
Avalanche also lands firmly in science-fantasy territory (at last!). Gone are the teasers of another civilization; readers learn a whole lot more about where Lucas came from and how their world functions (hint: it involves more than a little tech). Both technology and its breakdown are to be feared in the Pler Series, as the marvels of that civilization behind the curtain may prove to be horrors for Lanna. Absolutely nothing in her world is simple.
This is one of the many reasons why I finished the book wishing I had the next title in the series already. Once again, I’m left eagerly awaiting whatever Lanna (and the charming Lucas) does next.