*Spoiler free, but spoilers for A Curse So Dark And Lonely*
Find the heir, win the crown. The curse is finally broken, but Prince Rhen of Emberfall faces darker troubles still. Rumors circulate that he is not the true heir and that forbidden magic has been unleashed in Emberfall. Although Rhen has Harper by his side, his guardsman Grey is missing, leaving more questions than answers. Win the crown, save the kingdom. Rumored to be the heir, Grey has been on the run since he destroyed Lilith. He has no desire to challenge Rhen–until Karis Luran once again threatens to take Emberfall by force. Her own daughter Lia Mara sees the flaws in her mother’s violent plan, but can she convince Grey to stand against Rhen, even for the good of Emberfall?
I loved A Curse So And Lonely. It was such an incredibly unique Beauty And The Beast retelling. I originally thought it was a standalone and I wasn’t sure what I thought about the fact that there was a sequel. Nevertheless, I loved the world and the characters enough that I was really, really looking forward to this book. I ended being really glad that this is a series. It was truly incredible.
This book was very different than I thought it was going to be. I knew it was going to be Grey’s book in a sense. I knew there was going to be a new main character. I just didn’t expect how far it would move from the first book. One of the reasons I loved the A Curse So Dark And Lonely so much was because of how much I loved Harper. I thought she would take a main focus in this book too. Though, she’s barely apart of this one. This book focuses on a completely different cast of characters. I was a bit disappointed at first, but WOW did these new characters impress me.
There’s a mix of old characters that we get to know better and completely new ones that are completely amazing to get to know. I got to fall in love with this expanded world with new characters. I thought that was pretty cool. I like Kemmerer tried to jam pack this book with as many pure characters as she could. And she wanted to jam pack an incredible amount of pureness into each one. Seriously, Grey and Lia Mara and Tycho are such incredibly good people at their core. Plus their companions, who I don’t think I should name because of spoilers. They make such a great group and it was so awesome to see them bond and come together. They fight when they need to, but they want to focus on compassion. They want to focus on their gentleness and the peace they want.
This book also expands on this world. New aspects are introduced, the political climate become increasingly tense, and we get to see new pieces of this world. It’s kind of like the world matured. It’s weird haha. But I’m really looking forward to seeing how it develops going forward. I think it’s going to be really cool to see if it’s done in such a way.
I wasn’t sure about certain plot points and certain developments as the book progressed. I was upset with how some things seemed to be playing out. It didn’t seem like they fit. BUT THAT PLOT TWIST AT THE END. I guessed it. I guessed the general idea. But it was done in such a way that absolutely blew my mind. In literally the last pages of the book, it slots so much into place. It makes the things I was wary about make sense, break my heart into pieces, and set up the next book so well. I’m kind of in awe at how it played out. It was so well done and so smart.
I loved how the emotional plot moved together with the overarching plot. It was so seamless and I feel like it made it all the better. It was about compassion, it was about gentleness, it was about doing what needs to be done, it’s about doing what you think is right.
Ugh, I just love the characters so much. Lia Mara is fierce. She values compassion when everyone around her does not. She loves strategy and she is underestimated by everyone around her. She knows how to handle herself. Grey has so much depth. He’s so much more than Rhen’s guardsman. He’s gentle, he’s sweet, and he’s so skilled at what he does. He learns so embrace so much in this book and I loved getting a closer look at him.
I loved how magic weaved its way into the story. I loved how it influenced the story and I loved how it influenced the characters.
I can’t wait for things to clash in the third book. Things are going to clash in the third book. I think it’s going to break my heart in so many ways, but I’m really, really looking forward to seeing what happens. How the politics shift or settle, how the characters handle themselves and what’s put in front of them, hopefully all the characters get a chance to take center stage. I can’t wait to learn even more about this world. I really, really love this series.
Thank you for reading!