The only reason this isn’t five stars is because of how heavy the romance was. Other than that, I loved this series.
As you well know by now if you follow my reviews, you know that I am not the biggest romance fan. My friend told me to listen to this series though, and she hadn’t let me down thus far so I gave them a shot. I loved them and I would listen to them again.
Kestrel is at a slave-camp. A prison-camp. Whatever you want to call it. She’s in trouble and she is being brainwashed. They drug them there, get them addicted to the things they put in their food and drugs. They work them until they are too tired to pick up the tools to do the camp’s trade. She doesn’t remember who she is or what her purpose is.
Arin is done. Kestrel made a fool out of him. No matter how much his heart hurts, he knows her words ring true. He gave her so many chances to tell him what her game was and she made it clear there was no game and all she wants is power. He has a country to help run. An army to unite. And a people to free.
Marie Rutkoski has made a trilogy of poems. This whole thing is one very melancholy, heart-wrenching, beautiful story about a slave and his master trying to set the world right again. Trying to prove to the world they are equals and that their love is real. Going against kingdom, honor and family to set things straight for the world that they want, no NEED, to live in.
They don’t just scheme against their countries though, the scheme against each other. There is a web of lies coming from both of their own hands that they are not sure they can get away from. They are not sure they can come back to each other.
Kestrel’s father betrayed her for her country.
Arin’s heart betrayed his mind.
There is just so much.. betrayal, scheming and death in this book that you kind of forget that it is 80% romance. When the romance parts show their head, it is pure beauty. Like she sewed these sentences together that you just find yourself falling in love with the words inside their minds for one another more than the character themselves.
There is also strong female friendship too. Sarsine and Kestrel slowly but surely become friends after Kestrel loses her only female friend Jessica. I love books that show how important friendship is, especially between girls. You always need someone who has your back.
I absolutely loved this book. It wasn’t just because someone has a pet tiger either, though that did help bring tears of laughter in my eyes. The prince, Roshar, probably ended up being my favorite part of this book. He was shameless and sarcastic and wonderful and I wish we could have a spin off of his adventures.
In conclusion, the audio book, narrated by Justine Eyre (★ ★ ★ ★ ★) is how I would advise someone who isn’t full-heartedly into romances to read it. You kind of get the feel of everything better and you don’t find yourself wanting to flip through the pages to where the action is. I actually enjoyed some of the romantic thoughts in their head this way.
I’m not going to say anything more about this. I feel like it is a must-be-read to understand. So that means you should just go read the series.