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The Key

(Guardians of Time #3)

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  5,375 ratings  ·  214 reviews
In the thrilling, final installment of the Guardians of Time trilogy, tentative guard members Matt and Rochelle have emerged as crucial players in fulfilling the prophecy of the Named. Matt has learned that he is the son of an immortal, while Rochelle is struggling with her newfound powers and her fear that the group doesn't trust her. In fact, their leader is certain that ...more
Paperback, 416 pages
Published October 3rd 2006 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens (first published February 7th 2005)
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Average rating 4.16  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,375 ratings  ·  214 reviews

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Krista (Miura Haruma-san, I will always miss you)
Okay, so based on the ending, I'd love to give this book one star, because I can't possibly think of a worse ending. Firt of all, I didn't really like getting Matt and Rochelle's perspectives...Ethan and Isabel's and even Arkarians POV's were much more interesting. I also felt like Isabel and Ethan's parts in this last book were too small, and Matt's transition from a clueless no one to the leader who knew everything and had every power in the world..was way over the top.
The story in itself was
Mar 22, 2011 rated it it was ok
I have never hated a final book in a series as much as I hated this one. I was truly loving this light, romantic, and adventurous, multi-award winning fantasy trilogy. Finally I was onto book three, the last one. It was heartwrenching, main characters die all over the place, the romance is piling up, the blood is every-freakin''s beyond fabulous! It is soap opera galore, you have no clue what is going to happen next. You have hunches but damnit if the book doesn't stab you in the ass ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This was an entertaining end to the trilogy. The two POVs offered in this book are Matt and Rochelle. They aren't my favorite narrators out of the lot. I kind of missed the characters from the two previous books, but I can see why the focus shifted to these two.

There's not a lot of time travel since the conflict comes to a head in the present. I didn't really miss it that much, though, since this series has never really spent much time on the actual time travel.

I tried not to get hung up on a
Gemma ♕ antari.and.the.books
God even after all this time, the ending always destroys my soul.

You would think, having read it a dozen times and being well aware of what's coming, I would be prepared. But no. No, no. The pain is real.

Imagine my sheer f**kng delight that after ten years there is a book four. Yes, I'm sure it will break my heart to start but maybe, just maybe, it will put it back together again!

*Zooms away*
Rebecca | Velvet Opus
One of THE most disappointing ends to a series. I was so bored skimming the last 40% of this and I'm glad it's over so I can read something else.


Book 1, The Named: ★★★☆☆
Book 2, The Dark: ★★☆☆☆
Book 3, The Key: ★★☆☆☆
Book 4, (wait.. there's a book 4??): Oh hell no!
Mar 28, 2010 rated it really liked it
*****BIG SPOILER ALERT!!!!*****
I wish with all my heart that I could give this a 5 but I just can't. If this didn't have one of the most abrupt endings in all of the books I've ever read in my life, than this would definitely be 5 stars.

This third and final installment had the fast-paced action from the second book along with the romance from the second book, but after I finished the last sentence, I literally said outloud "what the f---?!" There was definitely a last chapter missing somehow...
Nov 30, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya, fantasy, fiction
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 06, 2018 rated it it was ok
This book is actually more like 3-3.5 stars, however I docked a star because

1) Lorian's gender neutrality is treated horribly. The pronoun used for Lorian is always always "he" and about five to seven times, it is said that there is no way for Lorian to have romantic feelings for a woman without being male. As someone who identifies mainly as gender neutral, it is painful to read this sentiment over and over again

2) Dillon's misogyny, while briefly addressed, isn't really called out more. Not on
Mar 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-books, ya-series
Wow! It was a common YA story at the beginning, but... The feelings! The tension! The suspicion shifting from one to another endlessly... The third book of the series is really great, even after all these years, even after I've read all those YA series... Definitely a 5 star book ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Marianne Curley is an amazing author indeed!
Courtney Robeson
Sep 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Jul 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 12, 2018 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lauren (Luna)
The final part of the trilogy was much more enjoyable that the previous installments.
A number of predictable "twists" as usual, one genuine "omg" moment and a fairly weak/unsatisfying ending though.
I'm glad to have finished the series and am glad I read it. It's not one that I'll bother to reread again though.
Dynamagne Pariñas
May 08, 2013 rated it it was ok
The span between the time I read the second book and the last book is years because I wasn't able to find a copy of The Key in any of the bookstores I went to. Alas I finally found a copy and when I started reading it, I was taken again to a whole new world created by Marianne Curley. I didn't mind that the writing suited an eight-year-old reader, this is a book for children anyway. I didn't mind that the different love stories weren't dwelled much into because this isn't a romance novel in the ...more
Saimi Korhonen
Apr 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
"But trust is what the Guard is all about. Faith in what doesn't always make sense."

The Key is a wonderful, action-packed, emotional finale to this wonderful trilogy (The Shadow, the fourth book is still resolutely ignored in this house). The Key is told from the POVs of Matt, who is struggling with his position as the prophecied leader of the Guard and the Named, and of Rochelle, who is struggling with her past as the enemy's minion and trying her best to convince everyone that she is part of
Isabelle Low
Nov 01, 2012 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: 13-14
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 06, 2009 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: The Guardians of Time trilogy fans
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
A weak four stars. More like 3.5. Definitely the best book of the series. Some parts were too convenient and I was not a big fan of the ending.
May 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
THIS book reminds me why I always loved reading so much.
Jul 07, 2020 rated it liked it
Saw that my (at the time) favorite *trilogy from the early 2000s had a fourth book release in 2018! This discovery sparked my decision to re-read the books. 15 year-old me loved this series, but as an adult it was a little rough....

I think the most annoying thing that comes from the second and third novel is when a character over-explains a concept that you already know from the first or second book as if you are just now learning about them.

The third books feels less like a teen-written fan f
Flossmoor Public Library (IL)
Nov 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
This is one of my all-time favorite juvenile/young adult series because it has many genes – action, adventure, time travel, fantasy, history, a little romance – all wrapped into one well-crafted, imaginative plot. This is a MUST read for almost any reader, because of its broad diversity.

Ethan is a normal, modern-day boy when he’s awake, but when he sleeps his powers awaken as a Guardian of the Named. The Named are a secret organization whose purpose is to preserve and protect history as we know
May 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Amazing! I really loved this book!

First of all, I'd just like to say that it got me to like certain characters even more than I thought was possible! With the different view points, you really get to understand the characters better!

Ok, this book was really exciting and I couldn't stop reading it! adored it, and it had me giggling in places everywhere! I adored it!

So, we came off from the last book, The Dark , and now, the characters are on a big journey to find, well, the Key that Matt found
Pao Yang
Jan 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
I like this book because of its interesting plot setting and where they mostly focus on the story takes place in the lost city. I like it but also not because it almost like a movie where you want one thing to happen but a different thing happens and just like feeling when your angry about something but also want to find out in the end what happen and i like how the author make a story where many kind of emotion you get reading it and enjoyable. I would recommend this book to those who want to g ...more
Sep 26, 2018 rated it liked it
It was full of action and fun. There were some fun plot twists. Fun to read like the other two.
I was frustrated with the romances. Luckily no love triangles. But I hate it when characters are stubborn and I feel it's a stubbornness that's out of character.
The ending left me wanting, which is why she probably published a fourth book recently to close up loose ends.
May 21, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: australian
One small gripe: The historical inaccuracy of the "Captain" Cook on the Endeavour. He was a Lieutenant at that stage.

As this is written for young teens I imagine the author wrote the history as what society thinks happened to make it more accessible for a younger audience.

So alas it did not work for me at all.
Sarah Lapalme
Jul 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow was this action packed! I honestly didn't remember anything from this book, so I'm guessing I only got to read the first two. I thoroughly enjoyed reading The Key and seeing how the battle played out. The end was sad of course, but all in all this was an amazing book! I can't wait to read Book 4! ...more
Feb 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
OMG so bloody good!!!! haha cause there was lots of blood in the battle XP.
An easier read than I thought , after a failed first attempt to read it. I guess I had to be in the right frame of mind to read it!
Dec 14, 2017 rated it did not like it
Had to see how it ended. I feel dumber after reading these books. My 10 year old son has a better command of language than this writer. What a complete waste of time.
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I loved reading from a young age and scoured my school libraries during my younger years, but I never thought I would become a writer. It was not until my mid-thirties, while teaching office studies and computers to adults at the Coffs Harbour Education Campus that I began to think seriously about writing. I took several courses and experimented with different styles and genres. With two teenage d ...more

Other books in the series

Guardians of Time (4 books)
  • The Named
  • The Dark
  • The Shadow

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“He says, "I have loved you since the first moment I saw you. I wanted you then, and when I thought you didn't want me, I turned my love into hate."

"Ethan..." Before I say another word his mouth comes down over mine and he kisses me.”
“For a moment Ethan simply stares. Before him is the monster of his nightmares: his sister's murderer, the beast who robbed him of his greatest love. How easy, how fulfilling would it be to take Marduk's life? But the arrow in Ethan's fingers slips to the ground.
"No. even revenge is too great an honor for you."
As the night falls and brings an end to this long day of darkness, Marduk inhales his last staggered breath and his body turns to stone.”
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