I always took the Prince Jake there as a show of respect: still acknowledging him as leader, but respecting his personal wish of just being "Jake". (Which isn't possible of course but
1. I find raccoons surprisingly amusing. Mean, capable, and some of the smartest animals you'll find, in my experience. Not a lot of use as a morph, because if you see one, it can't be for long less it's put to rest. In imagining it, I picture something like a less delicate kitten, or a non lazy cat, without the agility. Nothing particularly envy inducing in its form, but a life and mind of inquisition.
2. Finally. Another of those heavy final arc turn of events. For the story its the best indicator so far the end is near, and I've done all my rants about why not before now, so I'm glad its come to, not an abrupt end, but a change in methods that takes us there.
3. Yeah, making the good guy a *** adds depth, but man, having done this so many times, it's hard to remember ever liking these guys. All their sufferage doesn't make it understandable, it makes it less understandable. Half of their fight was to clean up their mess, and yet despite all the things these six have done for them, they still give no help, and would murder the world. Lame. Obviously I'm biased, I said rather different about the Hork-Bajir war, but if 40 years of war makes you no wiser, no more capable, well then *** you Andalites.
4. Yet again, it took time to see how much was leading to this, but that makes it all the sweeter. Bittersweet, but by far the biggest blow dealt either way in a long, long war. Great moment. Cassie was right, lot of innocents at risk, and it's much more bitter when you think about it, but this was an incredible moment in the series, and I can't see how I could object to it.
5. This is surprisingly complicated to me. Of all of them aside from Jake, Rachel seems to be able to order Ax at times without persuading. Early on you could note respect from Ax, but by this point it's near loathing, and I think it's a cross of Ax's character, and the derogation of Rachel's that allows it. I'm sure they care deeper than either lets on, but so much is lost in the indifference from Rachel, the dislike from Ax, that this is the one relationship in the group I would call professional rather than personal.
6. Completely agree, because I've yet to see an act with a mass scale effect that wasn't built on good intentions. Good of course is objective, but believe fully that people are assured that exterminating this group or destroying this concept is in the overall best interest of everyone. Rare for someone who wants to do bad for bad, but that's not the Rachels, that's action without regard consequence, while Cassies are consequence through action. The action can be either, but the arrogance of assuming the result in advance leads to devastation.
7. I think it's ridiculous non of these hyper intelligent aliens figured this out in the last 40 years. Still I refuse, or at least don't want to believe that most Yeerks loathe the pools so much that they'd abandon their race forever. (Also don't know if I like that message to a youth reader. I don't like to draw messages from stories, but I do notice that it could be there.)
8. Their last life line to retain their humanity in a desperate time. Understandable, but at this point, not a top priority. Ethics are so annoying, because while I find it respectable not to attack a helpless foe, allowing him to arm himself is dumb too. But imo, more dumb than respectable.
9. In some respects Ax is the most important character, having skills that all the others lack and can not compensate for. In all but one of his books, he has dealings with his people, and the one thing that has never changed is his ambiguity about the military. He KNOWS all the horrors they permit, but he never gives up that loyalty, not entirely, and that's the thing I dislike about Ax the most. Though he's narratives on humans are never spot on, that's how stories go. Humans are too much to know in 54 books. He's tough, he's funny, he's good for exposition, and all in all Ax is a great feature to Animorphs, group and books.