Dispel Illusion (Impossible Times #3) by Mark Lawrence

Dispel Illusion brings to a close the Impossible Times series by Mark Lawrence.  I think I can say with sincerity that this book is the perfect conclusion.  Absolutely satisfying and the type of ending where you close the book with a ridiculous smile.  This is such a whirlwind of a book.  The pace is fast, there are plenty of threads to follow and in typical time travel fashion it’s an absolute jumble of timelines each bulging with the possibility of their own impending paradox. And, the twists.

This is a difficult book to discuss the plot.  The three books are so intricately entwined and I don’t want to give away any spoilers so if you are planning to read this series then be warned that this review could verge into dangerous territory.

Basically, Nick is a few years older as the story begins.  He’s still working on the time travel that will be necessary in order to make his more mature self travel back to help save Mia.  I love all these conundrums when time travel enters the scene and Lawrence does a fantastic job of using the teasers that jumping back in time creates.  The people funding Nick’s research are a bit unsavoury.  Here we have a very rich man with an incurable disease who wants to leap into a more modern time where advances in medicine might be able to help him live a little longer.  Desperate times call for desperate measures and Nick’s funder is becoming dangerous – or at least his henchman is.  Anyway, I’m not going to give anything more away about the plot.

So, the characters.  I love the way Nick is just so real. He really grows throughout the series and his ‘mature’ self is just as plausible as his younger self.  His relationship with Mia is really strong and he still values his friendships.  His discoveries have brought him scientific accolades and to all extents he’s making great strides in the scientific field but all of his actions are a little fraught and edged with sadness – if you’ve read the second book you’ll understand why this is the case.  There’s such an abundance of thought provoking material here – not least of all the strange idea of destiny and the issue about if you could know exactly when you would die – would you want to?  And how would that knowledge change you and impact upon your life.

The timelines jump around a little and in some respects you could say this is an incredibly complex novel and yet at the same time it’s wonderfully easy to understand. It’s puzzling really. Sci-fi isn’t really my comfort zone and time travel can be tricky to say the least and yet neither of these niggles were issues here.

I think Mark Lawrence excels at the big picture. In setting things in motion and jumping around in the timelines of his stories to show you things from a character’s future, or past, that later feeds into the story in such a jaw dropping fashion. This trickery plays a big part here and it’s just incredibly well done. I really am in awe of how all the threads come together.

The writing is once again really good.  There is a sense here of the author just enjoying himself with all the flashbacks and references and that comes across.  But, more than that, it ponders that age old question of ‘if you could travel back in time – what advice would you give to your younger self’.  I think everyone must, at one time or another have considered this very thing and this book really plays into that train of thought.  On top of that I think this is the sort of series that has multiple appeal. It’s a clever story, well constructed and gripping to read. For me it put me in mind of so many things and this was an element of the story that I personally loved but, at the same time, I think this will be equally appealing to readers whether or not they share that experience.

In terms of criticisms. I don’t have anything to be honest.

This was a very entertaining series to read. It exceeded my expectations in every way. I always pick up sci fi books with a mild feeling of fear – basically that I simply won’t understand everything or maybe the sci fi will be overwhelming and won’t appeal to me.  What can I say – that wasn’t the case here.  My fears were unnecessary.

Plus, a very satisfying conclusion indeed.

I received a copy through Netgalley, courtesy of the publisher, for which my thanks.  The above is my own opinion.

Rating 5*

9 Responses to “Dispel Illusion (Impossible Times #3) by Mark Lawrence”

  1. Tammy

    I’m not going to read your review, because I would like to read this series some day. Glad you loved it!

    • @lynnsbooks

      It’s a great series – and I almost put in my review I would love to see this adapted to movie. It would be so good.
      Lynn 😀

  2. Paul's Picks

    I’ve read the other two… and I’m picking this one up today based on your review 🙂

    • @lynnsbooks

      OOhhh, I hope you love it. I think it’s a fantastic ending. Such a lot of threads all coming together in a very impressive manner.
      Lynn 😀

  3. maddalena@spaceandsorcery

    I’ve read nothing but enthusiastic reviews about this series, and the fact that it’s far from the deep-grimdark of Prince of Thorns (so far the only novel I read by Lawrence) makes me even more curious to try it out . 🙂

    • @lynnsbooks

      Believe me – this series is nothing like Prince of Thorns. It’s a great series it really is.
      Lynn 😀

  4. Mogsy @ BiblioSanctum

    This is one I’m sad I’m not going to get to in 2019, but it’s definitely a priority for early 2020. So glad to hear it was a winner, I can’t wait!

    • @lynnsbooks

      It’s a brilliant way to end the series it really is.
      And a very quick read too so hopefully you’ll power through it easily.
      Lynn 😀

  5. Best of the Best list : 2019 | Books and travelling with Lynn

    […] Dispel Illusion by Mark Lawrence […]

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