The Dire King ( Jackaby Series #4)

The Dire King ( Jackaby Series #4)

by William Ritter


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The fate of the world is in the hands of detective of the supernatural R. F. Jackaby and his intrepid assistant, Abigail Rook. An evil king is turning ancient tensions into modern strife, using a blend of magic and technology to push the earth and the otherworld into a mortal competition. Jackaby and Abigail are caught in the middle as they continue to solve daily mysteries in New Fiddleham, New England—like who’s created the rend between the worlds, how to close it, and why the undead are appearing around town.

At the same time, the romance between Abigail and the shape-shifting police detective Charlie Cane deepens, and Jackaby’s resistance to his feelings for the ghostly lady of 926 Augur Lane, Jenny Cavanaugh, begins to give way. But before the four can think about their own futures, they will have to defeat an evil that wants to destroy the future altogether.
The epic conclusion to the New York Times bestselling Jackaby series features wry humor and a cast of unforgettable characters facing off against their most dangerous, bone-chilling foe ever.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781616206703
Publisher: Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill
Publication date: 08/22/2017
Series: Jackaby Series , #4
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 587,213
Product dimensions: 5.70(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.30(d)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

William Ritter is an Oregon author and educator. He is the proud father of the two bravest boys in the Wild Wood, and husband to the indomitable Queen of the Deep Dark. The Dire King is the fourth and final book in his acclaimed New York Times bestselling Jackaby series. Visit William Ritter online at and find him on Twitter: @Willothewords.

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The Dire King ( Jackaby Series #4) 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Awesome conclusion to an amazing series!
ruthsic More than 1 year ago
The Dire King delivered in more ways than one, as the finale of this amazing series and tying up the expectations and developments into this conclusion. The book starts off with Jackaby and Abigail preparing for The Dire Council, who have been revealed to be supernatural in origin, to invade and take over the human realm. However, before they can even have a proper plan in place, they are caught up in the town’s mayor’s rising hysteria over the existence of supernatural creatures. From the earlier book, we already knew Jackaby doesn’t tolerate discrimination against people, so he opens up his house for the influx of supernatural refugees. Their investigation into the Dire Council’s plans takes them back and forth between Anwynn and the human realm, as well as delve into the history of how the realms came to be separate. Without going into too many spoiler-y details, all I am going to say is that things that were hinted in earlier books were definitely played out in this one. There was always a mentor-student relationship between Jackaby and Abigail, and we see it so well in this one: they are a superb team, whose bond is tight, and their paths are now inextricably linked. There are appearances, once again, of many secondary characters as well as resolutions for both romances (you know which is the other one if you have been paying attention) and there’s plenty of action and development blended in. We also see Charlie’s backstory, get more background on the fae, and the roles some supernatural characters have been playing for a while. What stopped me from giving that final star was the fact that, at some point well into the first half, it does feel directionless. There are too many characters, too much plot happening and it is all very confusing for a while. Again, towards the ending, there were twists upon twists, and normally that is a good thing, but here you had to second guess every motive and it was getting exhausting to keep up with that pace. The endings, however, deliver some gut punches (which were foreshadowed) and still also resolved very well, turning some things around. In short, an explosive finale.
bluegreen91 More than 1 year ago
A very satisfying conclusion to this captivating series. Plenty of action, conflict, and resolution to hold my interest. Some great twists that I never saw coming. I'm sorry this is the end of the Jackaby series, but I'll be reading them all again to revisit Abigail, Jackaby, Jenny, and Charlie!
ReadingBifrost More than 1 year ago
“You are a good man. I’ve never known you to pick an unnecessary fight just because you knew you could win it, just as I’ve never seen you back down from a necessary one that you knew you could not. You never ask for glory, you don’t want people to chant your name-for goodness’ sake, none of us even knows your real name. We don’t need you to be good enough, sir. We just need you to keep being good.” The Dire King is the fourth and final installment of the Jackaby series and I found myself taking my time reading through it, not wanting it to come to an end. The battle between the Seelie and the Unseeliee, The Dire King and the earth, has come. Jackaby, our lovable and snarky detective, shows a more venerable side of himself during this book. The fate of two worlds rests on his shoulders and he carries the weight with apprehension and mild confidence. Since the first book I’ve seen the struggle Jackaby has gone through being the Seer and The Dire King allows barriers to fall and we get our first good glimpse of what Jackaby is like behind the bravado and banter. Abigail Rook. Ms Rook is my favorite kind of female lead. She’s strong and smart and has grown so, so much since the first book; both learning from and teaching Jackaby throughout her time in New Fiddleham. She’s also mild enough that she doesn’t completely take over the story and downplay the other characters. With the oncoming war looming, The Dire King welcomes back a handful of favorite secondary characters: Charlie (of course), Mr. Hudson, and Lydia, along with new secondary characters that quickly get under your skin (in good and bad ways). Through the series Jackaby’s motley crew has had a fare share of fights, but none as gruesome or as large scale as this full out war. Creatures pop up on both sides of the fight and add a colorful, kind of steampunk fairytale meets Tolkien-ish feel to the story. The plot is not as light and airy as the previous books, and defiantly takes a darker turn toward the quarter of the book, but the characters and charm of the world created by Ritter are never lost in the mayhem. I hate that this is the final book, but it had a well placed ending that let readers know even though the books are ending, the story isn’t. I always like that in a conclusion instead of a long, drawn out piece. I hope Ritter has more for us up his sleeves for the future, just as amazing and magical as Jackaby.
NovelKnight More than 1 year ago
The end is here. No, really, the end of the world is just around the corner and Jackaby has a house full of supernatural creatures while Abigail attempts to create order amidst the chaos. Much like how these novels seem to go. All the players are here as well as a few new ones in the conclusion of the Jackaby series. Though I can’t say the third book, Ghostly Echoes, was a particular favorite, I thoroughly enjoyed The Dire King which follows events from the previous book and brings everything full circle. This is definitely a series you want to read from start to finish and you’ll have no problem doing so because they’re such light, quick reads. The Dire King was likely the darkest of the four, forcing the characters to face the potential end of days with the threat looming overhead. Jackaby is. . . well, he’s Jackaby. It’s hard to explain such an eccentric Sherlock-esque character in full without simply reading the books. Where in the previous installments his character has always been a source of humor, this book allowed for little of that. It’s one thing after another with little time for the comedy I’ve come to know from this series. That was a bit disappointing but Ritter made up for it with plenty of action building to the final epic battle because what supernatural series is complete without a battle scene to end things. And then there was the plot twist. THE PLOT TWIST. I was so busy keeping track of Jackaby and Abigail that I completely missed the clues for the twist and then WHAM it hit me over the head. Speaking of Abigail. . . Okay, so I’ve been shipping the crap out of her and Charlie now since Beastly Bones and that’s all well and good but Ritter decided that he needed to stomp on that ship a bit. You know, pull the heartstrings (more like rip them out). I spent the whole book wondering if they would be end game and I can’t tell y’all the results of that hope but let’s just say I had a mini heart attack. Was this the best ending to a series I ever read? No. Was it a lot of fun to read? Absolutely. That’s the thing about the Jackaby books. I wouldn’t call them my favorites but they’re light and fun with a good combination of mystery, humor, and the supernatural, to appeal to just about anyone. This ending felt. . . good. I feel like the series has been wrapped up well but with an opening for a future continuation should it ever come up. And I would totally read a spin-off or continuation, mind you. Definitely need a bit more from the very ending. A great ending to a good series. If you haven’t, check out the first book, Jackaby, and get it on your TBR!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm sorry the journey is over.
YAandWine More than 1 year ago
THE DIRE KING is the conclusion to this Sherlockian series where the sidekick is an absolute hero and being paranormal isn't so very strange. As with all the books in the JACKABY series, I was absolutely enchanted by THE DIRE KING. The world building always draws me in, and Ritter's brilliant combination of the Victorian setting and supernatural elements is always so much fun and an absolute joy to read. The plot of this book is full of twists and turns, and it's a bit darker than the other books in the series have been thus far, which I really enjoyed. There are a lot of fantastic action scenes all building up to the epic battle at the end, which is full of paranormal creatures as well as characters from previous books in the series. I typically find Jackaby's character to be funny and entertaining, and he did fall a bit flat for me in this final installment in the series, which is probably due to the dire situation the characters find themselves facing. I would have liked to have seen just a bit more of his classic eccentrism and quirkiness though. Abigail Rook, as ever, is a phenomenal heroine. I love that Ritter has taken a character that is really the sidekick in the series, and put her in a position to show her strength and that she is a total hero in her own right. She's smart, brave, and definitely the kind of character I love reading about. I'm posting this review a little teary eyed, because I'm sad that the series is over. I think an annual October re-read may be in my future. If you haven't read these books yet, definitely do. They are an absolute delight.
book_junkee More than 1 year ago
I have enjoyed this entire series and I was more than excited to get my greedy hands on an early copy of this book. As always, Jackaby and the gang are delightful. There's all sorts of banter and magic and baby swoons. Of course there is an epic battle because it's the last book and everything has reached it peak... ...I refuse to spoil things, but know that I was screaming at a couple of things that happened. Things I definitely wasn't expecting. Some were amazing, some were heartbreaking. It's one heck of a way to end a series. **Huge thanks to Algonquin Young Readers for providing the arc free of charge**