Dead of Alive by Derek Landy is the 14th book in the Skulduggery Pleasant series and the penultimate book. I first read this in April 2021 and so it’s the book that’s had the least time between first read and reread in the Dead Famous Readalong for me. If you’d like you can see my original review from the first read through.
This book still fucks me up. So badly. So so badly.
It is SUCH a penultimate book, despite the fact that a lot of our questions are wrapped up and brought to a close in this book, there are still a million and one questions left on my tongue and I really have no clue how Landy is actually going to answer them all in one last book.
There is character development in this book in leaps and bounds. So many of the newer characters that we’ve been following really come into their own in this book, as well as seeing our longstanding characters develop as they learn and grow in the face of their troubles.
Omen is fucking adorable and I will stand by that till the end of time. He’s such a little bean and I adore reading from his point of view and learning more about him. He deserves so much more! I also loved reading from the perspective of Militsia, she is so good for Valkyrie and it’s lovely to see their relationship.
I also really enjoyed the flashbacks that we got to the time between the two seasons of the series. It adds a lot of context for where Val was mentally during this time and fills in the gaps nicely. I just wish it had been a little more interwoven through the whole second season.
On CAWPILE I rated this: Characters: 8, Atmosphere: 9, Writing: 8, Plot: 7, Intrigue: 8, Logic: 6, Enjoyment: 8, which gives an overall score of 7.71 and a 4* rating.
This is probably a less objective review of Dead or Alive than when I read it the first time. And I know that’s a bit of a ridiculous statement considering I’m usually just adoring the books the first time through. But because we’re so close to the last book I was just vibing with all the ridiculousness through this book!
Highlight here to see trigger warnings: violence, death, gun violence, gore, PTSD, police brutality, murder, outing, homophobia
Next up? Until the End.