First off, the Wardstone Trilogy, in my opinion, should be marketed or sold as a single trilogy--one discounted price for all three, instead of separate prices for the individual books. You know, like almost ever other trilogy books at bookstores today.
Having said that, I just like to say I have spent countless hours reading about the adventures of Hyden and his allies. If just like me you began your acquaintance with them in the first book, you've probably met a lot of characters that are now "dead" by the second and third books that reading this last installment in the Wardstone series can feel sentimental at times. And yes, again this is epic--at more than 400 pages, this is not exactly something you read on a Friday night and finish off by the morning. But then again, the story telling in this and in the other two previous books is quite fast-paced that you don't even notice you're flipping through hundreds of pages.
But like any other tale, the Wardstone has to end--although if I were the author, the Wardstone does not have to end in a third book--consider George RR Martin of the `A Song of Ice and Fire' fame, for example--the guy's currently writing the sixth installment in the grand series, and he's not even finished, yet. And I don't see any reason why it could not be done with the Wardstone series, with all its majestic potential. I say let's have some more!
M. R. Mathias's heightened literary power is most evident in `The Wizard and the Warlord'--he has further sharpened his writing skills, and is using it now in laser-like precision in playing around the narrative of this last book in the grand Wardstone series. If these books can be compared to images, I'd say this last book has the "highest definition" of all three--every moment is richly described, painted, conjured in the reader's imagination so much that you're left gasping for breath at times--and I'm not even talking about the battle scenes, yet!
Overall, `The Wizard and the Warlord' is a majestic, amazing, awe-inspiring, and ultimately emotionally satisfying finish to an epic saga. This book deserves nothing less than five stars.