You have power over your mind - not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength. - Marcus Aurelius
The above is one of the many quotes this book provided and one that I loved and believe carries weight for those who write. Whether author or reviewer.
Let me get the major question out of the way before we delve into this story. If you like Tony and Claire as a couple, then you will like this story. If not, then expect to be disappointed.
Now ... wow! Loved it! For the loose ends that were tied, marvelous! For the many outstanding issues, I shall wait to see where that goes. I am anticipating something else from this series, separate and apart from Tony's POV. I have to believe in this, because if not, then I shall keep on making up my own ending as I feel like this story isn't complete. Someone else is out there and is a threat to the Nichols/Rawlings clan. That much is obvious.
'Conviction', being the conclusion that it is, didn't carry as much of a mind game as the books before. It was still good, but it paled in comparison to the novels before in this series. I blame it on it's purpose. I can truly say that the beginning held me and had me wondering what happened and why we were propelled here.
The middle at times dragged to me and the end was good but not great. Actually, I think that the anticipation could have been more. This series is known for keeping us on the edge of our seats and while I had some of those moments, I expected to faint occasionally like I did with 'Consequences' and 'Truth'. I did not.
I am glad to see the change in both Tony and Claire, but I would have loved to spend some more time with them as this new found couple in Iowa. Claire obviously grew some "balls" and Tony was like Tony 2.0. Same crazy, controlling bastard we love, but with a side for Claire that he has never portrayed before. He is just one contradiction after a next.
The LA gang did a complete 360 on me and that is part of the reason why I would have liked a more conclusive ending for them. I like Harry. I think he is hot and was a victim in this relationship between Tony and Claire. I am shocked and appalled at Amber and hate Liz. She is Claire before prison, without being held. Get some self-respect Liz!
While I don't hate Emily, I believe that she had a very villainous role in this installment. Done with good intentions, but wrong nonetheless. At times I wanted to fight her for Claire. Falling in love with Meredith was another shocker for me. I barely even registered her character from previous novels, but I loved how she sailed us into the future and helped with a wonderful transition.
As smooth as the transition was, I still feel that the ending became a little unrealistic as the crimes and convictions didn't coincide in my book. Catherine could have been a better villain if she was given the time. Sophia and her husband was dealt an awful hand in this installment, and I am not sure why they were made to suffer so much for complete outsiders who had no clue as to what was happening.
I wanted more time to be spent on the Nichols/Rawlings feud, but I loved this story nonetheless. I love how everyone from book 1 to 3 were given their time in the sun and even though we didn't get everyone's finale, I am semi content with the one I got. Meeting Francis and Madeline was also a welcomed. They were a great addition to the clan.
I loved every single one of the quotes that we received before each chapter and made a note of them all. From Mohammed Ali to Stephanie Meyer, anyone could have given their philosophical point of view in this novel. It still held it's meticulous vibe and strong character development. Every corner was covered, and if not for that confusing ending and lack of intensity and angst that kept us on our feet before, I would have deemed this novel perfect.
I fell in and out of love and got answers, that while it didn't shock me, sate me. I still think that 'Truth' is the best in this series so far, but 'Conviction' pulled it's weight and gave us the finale we had been waiting for from we began this series.
The greatest happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved; loved for ourselves, or rather, loved in spite of ourselves. - Victor Hugo