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Last Star Burning #3

Dead Moon Rising

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Sev must decode her mother’s last words to find the cure to Sleeping Sickness before Dr. Yang can use it to blackmail the world into submitting to his rule in this thrilling finale to the Last Star Burning trilogy.

Sev finally knows where to find the cure to Sleeping Sickness. The only problem is that she’s trapped in an endless sleep herself after refusing to give up her secrets to Dr. Yang.

Howl is determined to save Sev, but he has no idea where Dr. Yang is keeping her. When he runs into a group fleeing Port North on a mission of their own, he has no choice but to follow and hope they can get him back to the mountains before it’s too late.

June, infected with SS by the very people she calls family, has now become the one thing she most fears. She’s supposed to be Port North’s insurance that Howl and Sev return with the cure, but June has other ideas.

And Tai-ge, reunited with the Reds, is airlifted to the City now overrun by SS. He’s charged with getting the factories running again by any means necessary—no matter how many Sephs stand in his way.

There’s only one thing strong enough to unite people who have been fighting for years, and Sev holds the key to it inside her mind. If she can’t reach the cure in time, there may not be anyone left to save.

400 pages, Kindle Edition

First published November 12, 2019

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About the author

Caitlin Sangster

7 books192 followers
Caitlin Sangster is the author of the Last Star Burning Trilogy, She Who Rides the Storm, and A Baker's Guide to Robber Pie.

She grew up in the back woods of California and would rather go hiking, running, swimming, or general outdoorsing than just about anything else. If there aren’t any mountains, it doesn’t count as a real place. At eighteen, she moved to XinJiang, and at twenty-one it was Taiwan. She did eventually buckle down and graduate from Brigham Young University with a BA in Asian Studies and is now that person you avoid at parties because she'll probably start talking about Shang dynasty oracle bones.

Caitlin has been writing since middle school. She always thought of it as a silly sort of compulsive habit until she realized that people like reading stories and she liked writing them and there wasn’t much silly about that.

She currently lives in Montana with her husband and four children.

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5 stars
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Displaying 1 - 24 of 24 reviews
Profile Image for Shelley.
5,217 reviews462 followers
December 31, 2019
*Source* Library
*Genre* Young Adult / Science Fiction
*Rating* 3.5


Caitlin Sangster's Dead Moon Rising is the third and final installment in the authors Last Star Burning trilogy. The series is an intricate strategy game set in an Asian-themed post-apocalyptic world and based somewhat on Mao's Communist ideology. The story begins right where Shatter the Suns left off but instead of just telling Sev's story, there are now (4) main characters; Jiang Sev, Tai-Ge, June, and Howl. Trapped in an endless sleep by Dr. Yang because she refuses to cooperate with him, Sev now knows where to find the answer to curing Sleeping Sickness.

*Full Review @ Gizmos Reviews*

Profile Image for Chelsea.
922 reviews9 followers
December 5, 2019
What a great ending to the series! I wasn't sure I would like the change in narration between characters, but I actually really enjoyed it. I felt like it helped me understand some of them better, especially Tai-ge, who was one of my favorite characters. I liked how the story progressed well between the narrators, without slowing too much or overlapping, either. I also liked the very end, where things were much better, but not totally resolved. It seemed much more realistic than a perfect ending, with everyone living in peace. The character development was great, too, since so much changed for all of them, and they had to readjust their perspectives and ideals. I love when characters seem really human like that! If you want a great dystopian series, pick this one up!
Profile Image for Samantha Hastings.
Author 31 books210 followers
November 16, 2019
Lyrically written with beautiful character development and exquisite world-building this series is not to be missed.

I read this in one day! And that means a lot when you realize it’s over 500 pages long. The conclusion of Sev’s story is told from four POVs (Sev, June, Howl, Tai-ge). It was wonderful to be in each of their heads and understand their motivations for their actions. No one is completely innocent. No one is left unharmed. No one is unaffected by the political machinations and chemical warfare. Each character comes into their own by accepting their pasts and choosing their futures. It’s one exciting adventure after another to the conclusion that will blow your mind.

Profile Image for Caitlyn.
448 reviews39 followers
November 17, 2019
(I'll refrain from rating this as I don't want to skew the ratings.)

I can't articulate precisely what I desired more of DEAD MOON RISING—romance, skirmishes, a grander finale? (Regardless, I'll certainly read what Sangster writes next.)
7 reviews
September 24, 2019
The reason I love the Last Star Burning triology is the worldbuliding. Unlike so many books in the YA/dystopian genre, the setting, populations, and social crisis that push the story forward are entirely original, not an echo of something you've read before. From the names of the characters to the comm-links, gas masks, quicklights, and status-revealing scars on every hand, descriptive bait awaits on every page to draw the reader in to the world of Sev and her co-stars.

As the final book in the trilogy, Dead Moon Rising manages to continue the tradition of a compelling plot with lots of fast-paced action, plenty of unexpected twists, and moral dilemmas for each character to overcome. Relationships which have developed over the course of the first two books continue to reveal themselves without becoming predictable. The point of crisis which strings all the books together -- the battle for the cure to SS -- resolves in a way which is satisfying, without being too sugary.
Profile Image for Sarah R.
379 reviews1 follower
May 1, 2021
This was a ride. It gets pretty violent (not much more than the previous two, I suppose) but it’s never gory for no reason. Obviously it’s war, so the situation gets rough by the end. The characters are all pushed to their limits in different ways, and I’m very pleased by the character development—especially because we get to see four different POVs in this book, as opposed to just Sev’s perspective in the first two. I think it works really well—the secrets that created mystery in the first two were revealed, and now we get to see Tai-ge’s and Howl’s thoughts about said secrets. It’s fun.

PLEASE don’t judge this book by its typos!! Whoever did the copy editing must have been in the biggest rush and it makes me so sad... mostly punctuation, but still... The story shines through despite the problems with typesetting!

There was only one chapter transition that didn’t really make sense to me, which is an improvement from the first book, which had several disorienting moments. The writing has always been good but it’s really great in this book. Lots of things that were hinted at in the first book have come full circle with plausible explanations, which makes me wonder if Sangster had it all planned from the beginning or had to come up with motivations retroactively. If the former, she’s a genius. If the latter, she’s still a genius who puts in a lot of hard work to make details fit.

And here’s the section I discuss some mildly spoilery thoughts that are mostly meant to remind myself what happened and what I thought about it!

Anyway it was great, more people should read this trilogy, and also, poor Sev’s head. I just know she’s got some brain damage by now from all the times she’s knocked out and kicked around.
Profile Image for Kendra.
389 reviews13 followers
April 23, 2020
“Forgiveness doesn’t mean forgetting. It means letting go so bad things don’t fester inside you. So other people’s bad decisions don’t spoil you. I’m still learning how to do it.”

OKAY this is not the kind of book to be reading with the world the way it is right now.. let me stress that! I HAD to read it because otherwise I feel I would’ve forgotten the plot. But the reality in this book of the wearing of masks and being exposed just kinda freaked me out. We live in a reality right now where we wear masks everyday to keep us safe.

Sev has been put into a deep sleep. June is still infected and confined. Howl is healing up. Taige is planning political things with his mother. All many different people but they all have one thing in common. They want Sev and they will stop at nothing to get to her. But what if someone gets to her first? What if she doesn’t wanna go? What if there too late?

Once Sev is acquired then what? They have to figure out how to wake her. Break her out or kidnap or kill her or whatever they plan to do. And even then if that happens. The world is still dark and twisted. All political leaders are corrupting the soldiers. Everyone is at war with eachother.

Let’s say Sev wakes up and somehow finds the cure after all those hidden messages from her mother. Then what? At what cost will the cure come? Is a cure even possible? Is hope even real?

Gotta say the author did a phenomenal job at ending this series. I actually liked having different chapters with different points of view from different characters. I definitely felt more connected emotionally with them. Just wish the ending could’ve been a little more detailed. But series well done!
Profile Image for Ray Blackham.
1 review
November 14, 2019
"Dead Moon Rising" is the third and last book in this series. The first book, "Last Star Burning', introduced the heroes and villains. The story started simply and, as Sevvy's (and the reader's) understanding develops, rolls toward an ever more intriguing story as more experiences bring more questions. In the second book, "Shatter the Suns", the story widens its scope, and love, deception, anger and rejection strip away all of the hero and villain facades and leads Sevvy tho other characters into a state of fear, misunderstanding, anger, honor, promises to be met or broken, and unpredictability.

This third book, "Dead Moon Rising", brings it all together in a well-paced story that proceeds from multiple characters' viewpoints. Who ultimately serves which master starts to clear up as the situation becomes more desperate, but the story still proceeds along a knife edge of unpredictability and suspense up until the end. At the conclusion, the probability waveform collapses and the story resolves, but it could have just as easily gone in any of several ways (most of which are really bad!). The characters also resolve into complex, real, imperfect and interesting people. What, then, is a hero or a villain? Aren't we all really a measure of both? I thought this third volume was wonderfully done.
1 review1 follower
October 2, 2019
I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this whole series. Through the journey, Sangster has taken me through a whole spectrum of emotions. There are times I feel frustrated, angry, happy, or relieved over how the story is going. But through it, I am kept on the edge of my seat waiting to find out what happens next. The author keeps the story moving. The characters are real, with real weaknesses, and real internal battles to become better people. Because of the nature of the story line, the first part of the book jumps back and forth between different character perspectives more frequently than was quite comfortable for me; but as the story progresses it changed naturally to being less jumpy. The flow keeps the story moving. The chapters are not long, which makes for an easy read. The book doesn't end up being some perfectly unrealistic fairy tale; instead, the imperfections and problems within its world allow for suspense and resolution that will result in the reader's increased connection to those within the story. Overall, this is a story that will leave readers satisfied with what it has to offer.
3 reviews7 followers
September 25, 2019
The much-anticipated finale of Last Star Burning did not disappoint! I enjoyed DMR even more than the previous two books in the series and am excited to go back and read all three in a row. DMR changes pace a bit by having 4 narrators rather than just Sev. It was fun to have new perspectives and see the story lines separate and come back together. I loved that DMR really focused on exploring deeper questions of morality, forgiveness, good vs bad, and second chances. The characters were forced to examine their lives and beliefs and who they were and wanted to be. The end lags a bit, but everything is wrapped up nicely so you aren't left hanging. There is enough action in the middle to keep you hooked, and a few twists that surprised me. A fun and clean read, great for teens or adults who want something easy and enjoyable.
Profile Image for Audrey.
64 reviews
January 29, 2020
The character of Sev is the hub of Sangster’s trilogy that immerses readers in “survival thinking.” Most of us will never experience (hopefully) a pandemic-caused breakdown of society, which forces regional, political, and class differences upon people. The background experiences of each character, the roles they are pushed into, and the choices they make under duress, are a fascinating journey into the unraveling of civilized behavior. As we read the thoughts of the central characters during the final book, we wonder what lines each character will, or will not cross, in each person’s forward progress toward his or her desired outcome. We ask ourselves, what would I do? Sevy, arguably the least morally-compromised character, considers taking actions we could not have imagined of her at the start of the series.
Profile Image for Lauren Perotto.
233 reviews1 follower
November 4, 2019
Such a great ending to a really good series! I loved being able to see things from different points of view In this third installment. I also enjoyed learning more about the individuals’ motivations. Lots of action, plenty of mystery, good comedic relief and a touch of romance. While there are some small similarities to other dystopias, it didn’t feel like a retelling or copying of the typical dystopian story. It was unique and original. The story was believable and fun and I appreciated that the ending was satisfactory without being too neat.

Excellent, clean read. Safe and enjoyable for all ages. My 11 year old is jealous that I got to read it before her and that she has to wait for her own copy to come before she can read. Highly recommend!
17 reviews
October 1, 2020
This series is not in my typical genre choice, but the story completely sucked me in. I loved all 3 books in the series and thought that this final book was phenomenal. I loved seeing the world through Tai-ge’s eyes. It helped me understand him better and really come to like him. I enjoyed the more realistic feel to the ending. I loved the recognition that people are not completely good or completely bad, and that it really boils down to everyone wanting to survive and have their loved ones survive too. And I liked how the people recognized that although the war destroyed a lot of things, it also built a lot too.

I would definitely recommend this book/series.
Profile Image for Abigail Mohn.
153 reviews4 followers
September 30, 2022
Last Star Burning: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Shatter the Suns: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️✨
Dead Moon Rising: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

WOW. Why isn’t this trilogy more popular among dystopian and sci-fi fans? It’s chock full of twists and turns, with an incredible cast of characters and an amazing setting. If you’re a fan of The Maze Runner, Matched, or The Hunger Games, check this out immediately. You will not regret it.

Thanks to my sister for recommending this to me! A full review will be coming soon on my channel.
Profile Image for Nadia.
97 reviews
February 5, 2020
Amazing! The ending was perfect. The characters and story have so much depth and meaningfulness. I loved the conclusion. Howl, June and Sev are the perfect make shift family and share the sweetest moments in a world full of war and sickness. I would love a spin off with June looking for her mother with guest appearances of Howl and Sev. I’m not ready for the story to end.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Kris.
112 reviews
March 2, 2022
Ugh, was she paid by the word to write this series? So. Many. Word. Descriptions. Every sentence was just over the top, I lost count at my eye rolls. And so much repetition on feelings and conversations.

I wanted to love this, but it was 250 pages too many.
Profile Image for Rachel.
581 reviews13 followers
January 10, 2020
By far my favorite of the three books in this trilogy.
Profile Image for Elise.
196 reviews
April 11, 2020
A very good ending to a very good series, though at some points the different POV drove me insane. But I suppose that's the point.
Profile Image for Carlie.
70 reviews
July 15, 2020
Pretty sure this one is my favorite of the three. It really tied it all together for me.
Profile Image for Angelica Oler.
6 reviews1 follower
November 12, 2019
Masterfully written!
I received an ARC and was able to read the final of the LSB trilogy. In an effort to avoid inadvertently spoiling anything, all I will say was it’s was fantastic, Sangster did a magnificent of delivering this page turner. This book had all the feelings! Joy, heartache, and tears in all their varieties.
Profile Image for Marc Tan.
66 reviews
December 21, 2022
“Forgiveness doesn’t mean forgetting. It means letting go so bad things don’t fester inside you. So other people’s bad decisions don’t spoil you. I’m still learning how to do it.”
Displaying 1 - 24 of 24 reviews

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