The time has come for the very last Fear Street Saga book. I don’t even know what to say. Some of the books in this miniseries have killed it, and others deserved to be shot. This book, the sixteenth and final installment wasn’t terrible – in fact it was one of the better ones. It was also one of the most original stories and didn’t muck up any existing Fear Street lore, which is a win. Without further adeui please allow me to present Fear Street’s “The Hand of Power”! 🙂
The dark power of the Fear family consumes all those connected with it. The Fears. Those they love – and hate. The entire town of Shadyside. All are tainted forever by the evil of the family’s curse. No one can escape…
“Fear Street Sagas #16 – The Hand of Power”
Fear Street Scale: 4.5 out of 5 Fears
Margarete Fier doesn’t like using her strange ability to see into the past. Local villagers accuse her of witchcraft because of her visions. Peter Sturdevant has been the only person Margarete can turn to, and soon they fall in love and get engaged. And that’s when Peter asks for Margarete’s help. Peter knows a mysterious source of power is hidden somewhere in his mansion. And he’s desperate to have it. But then Margarete finds the power – along with its legacy of danger, despair and death.
It’s hard to believe that this is the last Fear Street Saga that ever was, and will ever be. Part of me wanted to see the series go out with a bang, but it was never intended to be the last book. (Two more books were slated, one even advertised, but they were never released.) Like the original Fear Street series the Sagas just faded into oblivion without a proper sendoff. On a positive note, this book wasn’t a bad note to end on (again like the final book in the original series). This story was one of the most original Fear Street stories to date without being too hokey or otherwise problematic.
Margarete Fier is a girl with a strange power: She has visions of the past. This may not sound as cool as visions of the future, but think about it. Someone disappears or is found murdered, and she can see what happened to the missing person – who harmed them. There would be no such thing as unsolved mysteries for anyone with this gift. But like most “gifted” people in this series, Margarete views her ability as a curse. In the beginning of the book she is forced to have a vision of her best friend (items belonging to a person trigger visions on contact) who has gone missing days before.
Margarete’s vision leads her and the local villagers to her friend’s final resting place. Even though the villagers know about Margarete’s visions and forced her to use her power to find her friend, once she does they are turn on her, convinced she is the actual killer. The whole thing is messed up, yet entirely predictable. There is a chase – they want to burn her for witchcraft – and she would never have gotten away if it weren’t for the help of a stranger: Peter Sturdevant, the local patroon (meaning he owns all of the land, including the entire village Margarete is from).
Margarete is wary to accept his help, but the desperation of escaping certain death, and a mob with torches, helps her make up her mind. When they arrive at Peter’s house, Margarete freaks because the house he lives in is the same house everyone is scared to approach because they believe it’s haunted. Again the crazy mob makes up her mind for her. There’s a confrontation and Peter defends Margarete rather gallantly, and the real killer (also predictable) is outed and that’s that. Margarete has a horrifying vision of Peter’s grandmother – the most powerful she has ever had. It takes a lot out of Margarete so she stays the night at Peter’s house.
The next day Peter tells Margarete about the mystery of his grandparents and the house they are in (originally built by his grandfather for his grandmother). Peter’s grandfather Niels met his grandmother Alina when he sailed to the island she was a native of. He hoped to colonize it but the two of them fell in love. Nothing else is known except that despite their love, Niels murdered Alina. Margarete’s visions begin to fill in the blanks and I have to say the ghostwriter did a pretty good job avoiding plot holes and making up an intriguing tale (which I cannot share for sake of spoilers, of course).
The rest of the book goes back and forth between Margarete’s visions of Alina and the present day, where she helps Peter find a token of great power that his grandmother hid in the house. Peter was born with a misshapen hand, and he hopes whatever powerful memento left behind will cure him of this ailment. It only takes a few visions for Margarete to realize, however, that the source of great power is also a source of great evil. Using the power comes at a price – the lives of all those you love taken by your own hand…
This book was pretty decent, I’d say in the top half of Fear Street Sagas. It was also one of the most original (and outlandish, but not so much that it didn’t work) stories in the Fear Street universe which is pretty impressive. The book includes dark magic, star-crossed love, conquering nations, war, visions and strange powers, human sacrifice, and a whole new Fier curse involving fire – not bad. Not bad at all!
I wouldn’t recommend this book to a complete Fear Street newbie, but anyone who has read a few books and is still curious… this book should seal their fate! 😉
Is this really the last one? Really? I just can’t believe it. It was a good ride.
Now there are four “The New Fear Street” books, one more miniseries (“Fear Street Seniors”) and one trilogy (“Fear Street Nights”, which came out more than six years after the previous Fear Street book, and was a revamp of sorts) before it’s time to say goodbye to Fear Street for good. Well at least anything connected to the old Fear Street. R.L. Stine brokered a book deal to release six new titles, starting last year. (So far three of the six are out.) Still, I am much closer to the end than I’d like to be. What am I going to do when I have to say a final goodbye to one of my guiltiest reading pleasures? I don’t want to think about it… it’s too scary! 😛