As some reviewers have noted, there's not a lot of action here as regards with whom Raisa will romantically partner, but the point of this penultimate volume is not to resolve that tension but to increase it. From a mechanistic plot perspective, Chima has to get Raisa from the Borderlands to Fellsmarch, move her friends and enemies into place for the finale, and provide both some resolutions and some complications to keep the reader engaged and guessing. It's interesting to compare this series to George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series. The struggle for the throne, the political intrigues and machinations, the wolves, the female warriors, and the land with dragons across the sea, though muted. Chima foregrounds the shifts in narrative perspective, the romantic dilemmas, the magic, and identification with characters. While some of these are staples of the genre, Martin and Chima's choices may provide examples of how those components are pitched to the particular audiences of their subgenres.