The Last by Katherine ApplegateThe Last is book #1 in the Endling Series by Katherine Applegate. It is the story of Byx, the baby of her pack, and a member of the nearly extinct dairne species. Dairnes are dog-like creatures that have magical abilities and are able to glide when they spread their arms and expand their wings.Byx returns home to find that her family has been hunted and killed, leaving her to be possibly the only one left of her kind. She is the Endling. Byx sets out quickly to avoid being hunted herself and to find somewhere safe to stay. Along the way, Byx meets up with new creatures of human and animal form and, for reasons of their own, join Byx in her quest to safety and to find other dairnes. This motley crew begins their journey as strangers, but as time goes on they become a kind of family, looking out for each other. They discover a secret plot in their kingdom of Nedarra that threatens every creature in their world. Will they be able to take on those that plot against them and save their kingdom?The characters are magical, the setting is mystical and the story is adventurous. It is an exciting read with a good message about society and the need to respect each other. I can’t wait for the next installment in the series!