Click to listen!
Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...
The Dire King (Jackaby #4)

Title: The Dire King (#4 Jackaby)

Author: William Ritter

Published: 7th of August 2018 – Algonquin Young Readers

Format: Paperback – 352 pages

““This world doesn’t need showy champions. It needs people who are good, people who do good, even if nobody will ever know.” – The Dire King

Hello Hello! How are you?

I am so glad that I’m finally posting my review of the final book in the Jackaby series that I buddy-read with Candyce from The Book Dutchesses last year! This series was so great, I loved every minute of it and I can’t wait to tell you all about the final instalment! Keep on reading for all my thoughts, but do be warned, they are surely very gushy!

Disclaimer: This is the fourth book in this series, and because of that, might be a few unavoidable SPOILERS in my review, even though I tried not to add any. However, if you do think you would like the read this series, please check out my review of Jackaby (#1), or if you’ve already started this series, you might like to read Beastly Bones (#2) or Ghostly Echoes (#3) before you come back here!


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.


The Dire King by William Ritter is the fourth and final book in the Jackaby series, which is a young adult mystery historical fiction fantasy series – and also a mouthful aha! Candyce and I read this book in November and the review has been in my drafts for over a month… but I’m so glad I finally found time to post it!

As this is the last book in the series, I’m only going to write a mini-review because I think I would spoil everyone otherwise. If you haven’t read this series but want to, head over to my other reviews of the previous books first which I listed just above!

This book was one that I was worried to start reading because I knew from the build-up in the previous three that it was going to be an almighty plot-twist and I was not ready. Candyce and I have been reading 3 chapters a day of this whole series for a few months and it was such good fun to just read those chapters and discuss them. Had I read them alone I would maybe have devoured them in 2 days, but, I’m also glad I read them with Candyce because Jackaby (the first book) would have been waiting on my shelf for probably years before I got to it, so thank you Candyce!

This book really surprised me, just like the previous 3 did. It was action-packed, it had a lot of twists and turns and I think it’s fair to say that I was on the edge of my seat for the whole book, and I ended up screaming a little bit at the end there. I had no idea where this book and finale were heading and although I need MORE, I think that the ending was so clever and I just want more, PLEASE!

Abigail, Jackaby, Charlie and Jenny are just the best mystery-solving bad-guy-catching team I have read about, I love them all so much and I GOT SO SCARED at the end there (I’m sorry about all the caps but if you have read this book you know why)! Abigail turned into such an independent, strong, resilient and glowing woman during this series, I fell in love with Jackaby a bit more in every book, he is scarily like Sherlock Holmes from Elementary and I was here for it. Charlie is such a sweetheart, so loyal! And Jenny! I have a soft spot for Jenny, she is just a great character and I’m so proud of how she grew in the four books. I don’t know if you can be proud of fictional characters, but I was, so there aha!

I don’t really know how to talk about this book without giving anything away, but what I will say is that you won’t be able to put it down, so many things were happening and it felt like there was a cliff-hanger at the end of each chapter.

I love the writing style, the humour, the subtle details, the setting, the plot, the timeline, I love everything about this book and I still don’t understand why more people don’t talk about this series, like come on!! It’s seriously amazing so you should all read it, it’s so fun and I guarantee you’ll love it. I love the Supernatural, Charmed, Elementary vibes I got from these books and I love so many quotes!

I’m going to stop blathering now because it’s getting embarrassing and I don’t think I can say much else and keep it all secret, but I loved it and I think that this series will be reread time and time again!

“I learned a long time ago that we do not survive because we’re strong—we become stronger the more we survive.” – The Dire King


Overall, this was an amazing finale to such a great series and I loved every minute of it. It had so many twists and turns, I was so surprised at so many things and I just couldn’t get enough of it.

The characters are amazing, they grow so much and the author did such a great job of writing them, they are realistic and believable. The plot really takes a turn in the last two books but as it moves on, you realise just how everything intertwines to come together at the end and it was such an enjoyable book.

The ending had me in a bit of a state because I really didn’t expect this and I sincerely hope that William Ritter will write more books, this time with a focus on Abigail Rook, I will keep my fingers and toes crossed. I think it would be another great series if there was one.

I gave this book 4.5 stars, I loved it but I was just missing that tiny spark. When I end up rereading this series, I might give all the books 5 stars though aha! I would highly recommend this series to all YA, mystery, historical fiction, fantasy, supernatural, paranormal lovers because there is a little bit of everything to suit everyone and it’s amazing.

“I never found a book that did not have at least a little magic in it.” – The Dire King

Thank you for reading this series with me Candyce, it was so much fun, I loved discussing everything!

That’s all for now, I hope you enjoyed this post, see you soon, stay safe,

Ellie xx


Atmosphere – 7

Start – 7.5

Pacing – 7

Ending – 8

Characters – 8

Theme – 8

Style – 8

Total = 53.5

4.5-star rating

This list includes some affiliate links. If you decide to purchase a book from one of my links, I may earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you.

If you would like to purchase this book, you can find it here:  Amazon UK  – Amazon FR – Amazon US –  AbeBooksThe Book DepositoryAudible FRWaterstonesBarnes and NobleAudible UKScrib’dKobo


Leave a Reply