Review of The Mortal Vestige
The Mortal Vestige, the final book in Zachry Wheeler’s Immortal Wake trilogy, finds Jonas in shock after the dramatic events that played out at the end of Thursday Midnight. A terror sweeps across the world of the Eternals and Jonas has been a witness to mass genocide. He is adrift in a world that he had first tried to destroy, then embraced and worked to find common ground in between Eternals and humans. But now Jonas must comb through the ruins of civilization in search of hope.
Zachry has done an amazing job in this final book in the trilogy. Jonas has been our guide throughout the series on the world of the Eternals – vampires who managed to take over the earth and create a utopia. But as the series has progressed, we get glimpses that all is not as it seems in paradise. As Jonas moves through the world after the catastrophic events perpetuated on Eternal society, he has a sliver of hope that maybe, somewhere, some vestige of humanity has survived. He leans upon his memories, of his friends and his wife, who have all died, to give him purpose. But throughout his journey hope is continually dashed. I really enjoyed seeing Jonas go through this passage as we see how a man copes, struggles, and creates mental crutches to push on when all hope seems lost.
I also applaud Zachry for tackling this story. After the end of Thursday Midnight I had no idea how the story would conclude, how he would complete the saga. Zachry has masterfully tackled the tale, taking Jonas (and the reader) on a roller coaster ride of emotions as hope and despair vie for dominance. Jonas takes on the mantle of “last man on earth” and his struggle to come to terms with literally the extinction of both the human and vampire races shows us more about humanity in general and what drives us. Zachry also shows us that the world of the Eternals was filled with a lot of rot, that the supposed utopia that they had created had a rotten core. This then becomes a cautionary tale that nothing is ever as it seems and blindly accepting propaganda – as the Eternals do with the NExUS propaganda – will ultimately lead to the destruction of society.
The Mortal Vestige is a wonderful conclusion to an ingeniously written trilogy. I highly recommend this book, and this series.