So as I mention in the review above, I find that I'm a victim of second book slump. Often when I read a second book I don't usually enjoy it nearly as much as the first book. But I thought that this book was even better than the first. It was amazing. The characters, the continual world building and the political drama. I found that the drama was the part that I enjoyed the most. The tension between the Emperor and the other countries was clear, but his use of strategy and revenge kept me on my toes. Seeing Dacra for the first time was really interesting and seeing their different culture described was incredible. I'm curious to see where the countries relationships go. I think that the dual perspective really helped build tension overall.
Kestrel: I think that Kestrel really grew as a character.She had a lot more in her way, being right underneath the Emperor's nose. I thought that her attempt to forget Arin is very easy to relate to. Readers who are trying to get over a breakup although this is far more severe. I think that her emotions were portrayed amazingly well. I found that reading her perspective helped to build the story.
Arin: I thought that Arin as a leader was extremely interesting to read about. I thought that his changing mood helped this story grow. I won't lie that most of his choices broke my heart. I thought that his ever changing mind was causing the problems, but Kestrel's need to lie truly didn't help. I won't lie, I yelled when he went to Dacra, even though he was told not too. Ugh, just listen. And now he thinks that she is perfectly safe, but she's going to prison so that's great.
Jess: I think that her "betrayal" cut the deepest. The idea that Kestrel hurt her friends through it all and then still loved Arin is crazy, but the heart wants what it wants. Jess had every right not to see her friend ever again.
Rolan: This is something that hit me deep. The fact that she didn't have the chance to explain or at least try and make amends for what she had done. To little to late.
The Emperor: Villains grow in most stories, but he's a prime villain, one you love to hate. He's pure evil. I think that the way he uses those around him, even his son is amazing. It's horrible but truly brilliant to read. His waiting game he plays with revenge.
Risha: The idea that she got sold to enemies is horrifying, but I can't wait to see what she does with her mastery of weapons.
Verex: He seemed fine, like he was growing on me but I wonder if he will always just be the emperor's puppet. I was very intrigued by his love for Risha and how that came to be.
Tensen: I was sad to see him go, but I wonder how much he really told Arin. I know it wasn't a lot. I thought that he would give Arin her letter at least or explain that she was the spy in the end, but now everything is a huge mess.
The General: To betray your own daughter shows something horrible, like an evil form of loyalty.
Roshar: He is an interesting friend to have. I think that the way he tortured Arin was horrible, but also his job sooo... is it wrong that I kinda love him?
The Queen: I wonder how she will ally with Arin after he left in search for Kestrel. Although it's not looking like Kestrel will be making any appearances any time soon. That kiss was something interesting to read about.
Moments to Remember:
"'Brother, you are mad,' said the queen.
'He loves me,' Roshar protested. The cub was sleeping, huddled against Roshar's leg.
'And when it has grown, and is large enough to eat a man?'
'Then I'll make Arin take care of him.'"
Final Line: "'I gave him nothing.'"
Thanks for reading,