The final book in the Protector of the Small quartet finds Kel newly knighted and off to her first assignment, a command post nonetheless. The fact that her first assignment makes her a commander makes her more upset than anything else, first because she's nervous the more experienced knights and soldiers, and even the commoners, will not respect her, and second because commanding a refugee camp means she won't be out fighting battles and participating in what she initially sees as the more active and worthwhile part of war.
But Kel is the perfect person for this job, and she soon comes to realize it as well. She's spent her entire career so far championing those who had trouble helping themselves, for whatever reason (hence the title of the quartet), and protecting refugees (and teaching them to fight and protect themselves) is probably the most effective use of her talents Lord Wyldon could have come up with. The book is split into two parts: the establishing of the refugee camp, which Kel calls Haven, and the rescue mission she must launch in order to save those refugees when no one else will.
I really liked this series. Pierce's style is a bit understated for me to ever LOVE love this, but Kel is a wonderful heroine, and if I ever have a daughter, I'm definitely going to be adding this series to her collection. The way Kel is constantly encountering issues of gender, class, and power and then overcoming them is just really satisfying. I also really liked that the series didn't end with us finding out who Kel ends up with, because it doesn't matter. This wasn't a romance, it was Kel's coming of age. My only complaint is I'm fast running out of new Tamora Pierce books to read.