I love a good last line.
At first, I wasn't enamored with this novel because it seemed way too obvious who the real hero of the story was. Then I wasn't so sure. Then I was sure again, but it didn't matter because by that point I was far enough into the story to enjoy the character and story development.
Stead owes a great debt to Madeleine L'Engle, and I can see that she's wanted to write, in essence, a tribute to L'Engle since she could remember reading "A Wrinkle in Time" as a young girl. I want to think that this was the only YA or children's sci-fi novel of my generation's time, but that can't be right, right? There have to be others. The only other one I can think of is "The House With a Clock in its Walls," but that's not sci-fi, that's gothic horror aimed at kids (what? yea, but it's fabulous). I think of all the riches kids have today and I'm so jealous.
I digress a bit. I ended up liking this hugely because Stead wraps things up in a nice neat bow - absolutely essential for this kind of story - but leaves you wondering about one little thing. Until the last line.