Genre: Fantasy Age Range: YA Star Rating: 3 stars Series: yes - final book in trilogy
*SPOILER ALERT: contains SPOILERS for STOLEN SONGBIRD and HIDDEN HUNTRESS*
Cécile and Tristan have accomplished the impossible, but their greatest challenge remains: defeating the evil they have unleashed upon the world.
As they scramble for a way to protect the people of the Isle and liberate the trolls from their tyrant king, Cécile and Tristan must battle those who’d see them dead. To win, they will risk everything. And everyone.
But it might not be enough. Both Cécile and Tristan have debts, and they will be forced to pay them at a cost far greater than they had ever imagined.
Synopsis taken from Goodreads. Add to your shelves here.
As the ending of HIDDEN HUNTRESS set up, this book is all about the war between human and trolls now they’re free. There are a fair few factions – the humans, with Tristian and Cecile etc on side, the Duke of Angouleme, and the King of the trolls. Having more than one enemy did help, as it upped the stakes and made the story more complex, because they had to balance how they were acting so that they didn’t lose to one side by focusing entirely on the other.
There are also two “immortal fey” rulers involved too, who did feel a bit of a surprise tossed in. They were barely mentioned in the first book and absent from the second, but they play a key role in this one (another set of adversaries). I wish they’d felt a little more set up, rather than suddenly appearing as these all powerful threats who were, in some ways, more of an issue than the troll threats, who had been the problems in the first two books.
The war knocked out the political intrigue I had enjoyed in the second book. I don’t need political intrigue to enjoy a book, but I need something that grabs me and holds me – and intrigue is the surest way to do that. The second is to latch onto the main character, to invest in their struggle. Unfortunately, I’d never really invested or come to like Cecile all that much. She was just a character I had no real emotional opinion on – good or bad. I think it was because there was such a romance heavy element to her throughout, and it felt like it was the core of her within the book was her relationship with Tristian and then her magic joined later.
The ending was a tad disappointing, because I never believed the big emotional “oh no”, because it’s just so out of YA character to have something like that. I would have really respected the book if that happened, but I knew it was all part of a ploy, so the chapters where they were pretending fell very flat to me. However, I did like the more tragic element of the final two chapters, and that they didn’t get an easy way out of that promise.
I have just the prequel left to read now – it’s recommend that it’s read after the first book at least.
Read my reviews of other books by Danielle L. Jensen:
The Malediction Trilogy (this series):
- THE BROKEN ONES (#0)
- STOLEN SONGBIRD (#1)
- HIDDEN HUNTRESS (#2)
- TARNISHED EMPIRE (#0)
- DARK SHORES (#1)
- DARK SKIES (#2)
- GILDED SERPENT (#3)
The Bridge Kingdom:
- THE BRIDGE KINGDOM (#1)
- THE TRAITOR QUEEN (#2)
- THE INADEQUATE HEIR (#3)