This book...I don't want to say it was filler, because it definitely wasn't, but it very much felt like set-up for the final book in the trilogy. It advanced the overall storyline, but you could definitely see the pieces being put into place for the next book.
It also felt a bit like "Nora Roberts writes a YA book*," since the chosen one who is supposed to lead the charge to defeat evil starts the book as a 13 year old. Kids, who were babies or toddlers in the first book are also now teenagers. These will be the characters that will be the focus of the final book.
Fallon, or The One, begins the book--as I said--just turning 13, and as such leaves her family to be trained by Mallick for two years. And while I enjoyed seeing her train and become stronger, both as a warrior and a witch, I also missed getting to spend more time with Lana and Simon, two characters I adored from the first book. They do get more page time when Fallon returns home after her training, so that pleased me.
I was also thrilled when we were able to revisit New Hope, and check in on the characters there.
While I didn't enjoy it quite as much as the first one, it was still a fantastic book, and I can't wait to see how it all ends.
*Which is definitely not a bad thing.