Genre: Fantasy (retelling) Age Range: YA Star Rating: 5 stars Series: yes - last book in trilogy
*SPOILER ALERT: contains SPOILERS for SWEET BLACK WAVES and WILD SAVAGE STARS*
To save the kingdom, Branwen embraced the darkest aspects of her magic. But she may have lost herself––and the two people she loves most.
Tristan and Eseult are missing. As Branwen searches for them, she must hide the truth surrounding their disappearance from both the king and her lover. Above all, she must find the Queen and her Champion first.
New and old enemies circle Branwen, clamoring for power and revenge, and threatening to destroy the fragile peace that she has sacrificed everything to secure.
Synopsis taken from Goodreads. Add to your shelves here or read my review with Kristina Pérez ahead of the book’s release here.
I picked this trilogy finale up in the evening and couldn’t put it down until I’d finished it. It was such an engaging read, pitting characters against one another in their desperate desire for peace/to be right/to define their own lives.
It’s hard to say much about this book without spoilers for it and the trilogy, but I loved that the war between the countries and who was manipulating it behind the scenes remained the focus, and that the retelling of the star-crossed lovers was more a complication and emotional strain on top that was causing all sorts of characters to react and make the situation much worse.
I was crying by the end. As expected, Kristina Pérez absolutely ran my heart through a wrangle with this book. Ruan, Tristan, Esuelt. This book took so many turns I wasn’t expecting, forcing Branwen to make more brutal choices to save her home.
I loved the way that the ending for Tristan and Esuelt was handled. It’s a tale of star-crossed lovers, so naturally it won’t end well. However, as the toxic relationships started to break down and the characters healed, I wasn’t sure how the ending would go. Then I hit the final act and IT WAS AMAZING. Esuelt’s choices in that last act was brilliant, as was the way Tristan and Branwen finished their relationship arc. It was bittersweet and hopeful all at once – perfect for the tone of the story.
Her growth with her relationships was so brilliant. She has five major relationships in the book – Tristan, Eseult, Ruan, Marc, and Andred. With the exception of her relationship with Marc, they’re all so humanly messy and complex. In contrast, Marc and Branwen are a brilliant brother/sister pair, and it was a nice ray of hope among the brokenness. Not to mention brilliant to see a man and a woman able to be really supportive loving friends without any hint of romance.
I’m rather sad that this trilogy has come to an end, definitely a favourite of mine, but it means I can look forwards to something new from Kristina Pérez soon – hopefully.
Read my review with Kristina Pérez ahead of the release of BRIGHT RAVEN SKIES here.
Read my reviews of other books by Kristina Pérez:
Sweet Black Waves (this series):
- SWEET BLACK WAVES (#1)
- WILD SAVAGE STARS (#2)