But this book (at least to me) wasn't about Laia or Elias. Reaper is about Helene. And I fucking love Helene. Okay, okay, unprofessional to swear in a review, but guys. Her arc is so good. I could read this whole series just from her POV, especially since Harper showed up and added a new level of depth to her internal conflict. The Blood Shrike shows an immense amount of growth in this volume, learning from her mistakes and outwitting her enemies, not to mention unleashing a god-level beat-down on the battlefield. Still, the odds are so stacked against her that it keeps the reader on the edge of their seat throughout. I can't wait to see what happens to her in the final installment.
As for the rest, I enjoyed finally learning the backstories of the Soul Catcher, the Nightbringer, and the jinn. Cook's big reveal was kind of obvious ever since book 2 and the Aquilla warhammer felt a little like a 'sword of destiny' but I didn't honestly mind either one too much. As always, Tahir's prose is economical without being boring, colorful without needing translation. The plot moves along at a nice pace throughout. Reaper is definitely better than Torch in that aspect, and I look forward to reading the finale when it comes out at the end of 2020.