The Demon King. As Fjerda’s massive army prepares to invade, Nikolai Lantsov will summon every bit of his ingenuity and charm—and even the monster within—to win this fight. But a dark threat looms that cannot be defeated by a young king’s gift for the impossible.
The Stormwitch. Zoya Nazyalensky has lost too much to war. She saw her mentor die and her worst enemy resurrected, and she refuses to bury another friend. Now duty demands she embrace her powers to become the weapon her country needs. No matter the cost.
The Queen of Mourning. Deep undercover, Nina Zenik risks discovery and death as she wages war on Fjerda from inside its capital. But her desire for revenge may cost her country its chance at freedom and Nina the chance to heal her grieving heart.
King. General. Spy. Together they must find a way to forge a future in the darkness. Or watch a nation fall.
I can’t believe I’m done with my Grishaverse re-read/read. I’m so glad I read all of the books back to back this time before reading this one, as I found I got so much more out of the story and felt so connected to the characters because of this. This book follows characters from both Six of Crows and Shadow and Bone, as it continues from King of Scars. I love these characters so much and I’m so happy that these books follow them all together. I also loved how some of the characters from the other stories appeared in this one as side characters, it was so cool to even see them briefly!
I really enjoyed this book, but sadly it didn’t quite capture me as much as King of Scars, and the Six of Crows duology remains to be my favourite of the Grisha books. I found this one less consistent than the others, mainly due to the points of view. I’ve always found Leigh Barugo does multiple POV so well, but I felt ever so slightly differently in this one. I think this is because it follows a different character that has never appeared in the Grisha books before, and I just didn’t feel connected to that character as much as I wanted to.
Love was the destroyer. It made mourners, widows, left misery in its wake.
I also found this slightly more political and more focused on royalty than I expected or wanted. I have recently realised that I am not often drawn to those kind of stories, and it did ever so slightly put me off this one. I also think this is why Six of Crows is my favourite Grisha duology, as it follows a heist and I find it so much more fun. I also felt the characters were sometimes quite disconnected from one another and had different things going on, which was slightly jarring for me.
I hope this doesn’t make it seem like I didn’t love this story, because I still really did! I loved Zoya and Nina’s chapters in particular, and some of the events made me so emotional because of what these amazing strong women go through throughout the Grisha books. I also enjoyed the way gender identity is explored in this story, which is so often not looked at in fantasy stories!
Grief and love were one and the same. Grief was the shadow love left when it was gone.
Overall, I still really enjoyed this one and some of the characters and events made me so emotional. I also loved the ending and it has made me super excited for where more stories in the Grishaverse could go…
4 out of 5 stars
May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽