Published on: February 7th 2017
Published by: HarperTeen
Series: Red Queen #3
Genre: YA Fantasy
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In this breathless third installment to Victoria Aveyard’s bestselling Red Queen series, allegiances are tested on every side. And when the Lightning Girl’s spark is gone, who will light the way for the rebellion?
Mare Barrow is a prisoner, powerless without her lightning, tormented by her lethal mistakes. She lives at the mercy of a boy she once loved, a boy made of lies and betrayal. Now a king, Maven Calore continues weaving his dead mother’s web in an attempt to maintain control over his country—and his prisoner.
As Mare bears the weight of Silent Stone in the palace, her once-ragtag band of newbloods and Reds continue organizing, training, and expanding. They prepare for war, no longer able to linger in the shadows. And Cal, the exiled prince with his own claim on Mare’s heart, will stop at nothing to bring her back.
When blood turns on blood, and ability on ability, there may be no one left to put out the fire—leaving Norta as Mare knows it to burn all the way down.
So, me being the idiot that I am totally forgot that this series was a 4 book series, so picked up this book thinking that it was the last book in a trilogy and stayed up until 3am to finish it. Then at 3am finished the book and realised it was in fact a 4 book series and spent the next few hours wide awake because I needed to know what happened next!
I came a little late to this series which meant that I was able to read Red Queen and Glass Sword together, therefore no agonising wait between books for me. Until I finished Glass Sword which had possible the most amazing ending which has kept me desperate for the past year. This book was no different and yet again I have been left a desperate puddle in need of the forth and final book in this amazing series!
“Love makes you weak. And she’s right. I learned that before I even knew you.”
One big change in this book is the fact that we now have 3 POV’s. We still have Mare but now we also have Cameron and Evangeline Samos. I have to be honest I was a little disappointed because I would have LOVED to have seen everything from Cal’s POV especially whilst Mare was being held and he couldn’t get to her, I live for broken hearts and deep emotional moments. But by the end of the book I had to agree that Cameron and Evangeline were such great choices and gave us so much more of a rounded view of the war.
“To stand in front of a person who is your whole world and be told you are not enough. You are not the choice. You are a shadow to the person who is your sun.”
Ok, so Mare. We left her in the last book having bargained her own life for those of her friends and Cal and we find her in this one now in the hands of Maven. She goes through a hell of a lot in this book but is still such a strong character and manages to manipulate Maven, just as much as he does her, in order to gain valuable information for the Scarlett Guard. I loved that she never lost her humor and kick ass character personality but that we also got some very vulnerable and emotional moments from her too as she struggled with her new situation and also with the PTSD that follows.
“Those who know what it’s like in the dark will do anything to stay in the light.”
In comparison to the last book Cal seems a lot more sure of himself in this book which I think is down to the fact that he has a purpose: finding and rescuing Mare. He has finally picked a side and I liked seeing his relationships with people develop further as he finally starts to let people in (just a little bit!). He seems a lot more comfortable with being a part of the rebellion now and takes an active part in working with them and advising them against his brother. However he is often torn between knowing what is right and what he must do for his kingdom and when put in the position of having to make tough decisions sometimes really struggles. It makes for an interesting conundrum of whether he will eventually become King and if he is strong enough to make the tough decisions. Next to Maven, Cal is probably the character I am most interested to see develop further in the final book.
“The fallen prince is exhausting. I don’t know how Mare could stand him or his inability to choose a damned side-especially when there’s only one side he can possibly pick.”
For those of you who have been as desperate as me for more development in the romantic relationships in this series (aka. Cal and Mare!) I can happily tell you that you will be rewarded in this book. It’s definitely a case of absence makes the heart grow stronger and I’m not going to say much except we get some REALLY swoony scenes. As is the norm in any dystopian series it’s not the smoothest of romances, but I have big hopes for Cal & Mare in the final book.
“She was his hurricane, and every nudge pulled him deeper into the eye of the storm.“
Maven is such a complex character and although I hate him as a character I love his place in this book. We get to see a lot more of Maven in this book as he reveals parts of himself to Mare that no one else knows about or understands. We get a lot of answers in this book about how Maven ended up the person that he is and I like that Aveyard managed to get me to feel sympathy for this character who I hate so much. Maven’s cleverness really shines in this book and his ability to plan and scheme results in some big wins for Maven, whereas his last shred of humanity and his love for Mare threatens to bring him to his knees. I have some big hopes for how this series will end for Maven and he is possible the character I am most excited to see how his story ends.
“I’m not a fool, little lightning girl. If you’re going to play in my head, I’m going to play in yours. It’s what we’re good at.“
We get even more ‘newborns’ as they are named in this series and some more really cool powers/abilities that turned up. I was a little disappointed in their lack of time in the spotlight in the previous book and so was really happy that we got so much more of them in this book in both battles and some seriously cool training scenes.
The story flows well for the most part although a few off notes a long the way. Mare’s imprisonment, although psychologically terrifying was frustratingly slow at times and the lack of action nearly resulted in some skimming at times. Also, Cameron’s POV took me a little time to get into, I just wanted to see what was happening with Cal and so all her thoughts and worries about her brother was just getting in the way of that for me.
The ending of this book left my heart in shambles, mostly because (as I mentioned below) I thought it was a trilogy and I really wanted to know how things were going to end, but also because Aveyard is a genius at writing heartbreaking cliffhangery type book endings. This is the 3rd time she has done it this series and I only just survived the last one! I seriously fear for my mental stability after I have finished the final book!
“My heart breaks for him; my heart hardens against him.”
A masterful blend of action and politics and romance, I am desperate to get my hands on the final installment in this novel!
Re-Readability: Most definitely!
I would recommend this book to fans of: dystopian, fantasy, characters with powers, rebellions, strong female characters