The Queen Will Betray You by Sarah Henning

*Spoiler free*

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Thank you so much to Tor Teen and Edelweiss for the e-ARC!

To stay together forever, Princess Amarande and her stableboy love, Luca, must part: Amarande to reclaim her kingdom from usurpers, and Luca to raise a rebellion and find his destiny. Arrayed against them are all the players in the game of thrones for control over the continent of The Sand and Sky. Facing unspeakable betrayals, enemies hidden in the shadows, and insurmountable odds, their only hope is the power of true love…

After reading The Princess Will Save You, I was absolutely siked to get into the sequel. I was a bit nervous, because the epilogue of Princess kind of came out of left field, and I was wondering where all the chips would fall. Nevertheless, I was looking forward to seeing Ama, Luca, and the rest of the gang be badass again! Trigger warnings: blood, violence

This was a wonderful, spectacular conclusion to this duology, and just an amazing book all around.

Alright, so you know how in my review of Princess, I was wary of the epilogue and thought it kind of came out of nowhere and I didn’t particularly love it? Yeah, well, that epilogue turned out to be what made Queen be as spectacular as it is. I will gladly admit that Henning took this plot point and executed it grandly.

Speaking of this, this book is built upon political intrigue, which I was not expecting at all! There is political intrigue upon political intrigue. Princess had a fluffy edge to it, but Queen takes a sharper one. There’s more chess pieces of the board, which means there are more moves to make and more blood to be shed. There was so much information being thrown around all the time. I had an alright time of keeping it all straight, and I really enjoyed seeing how these kingdoms, and rulers, where making a claim for power.

I also had an easier time keeping track of all the characters in this book. In the first one, the pirates sort of all blended together for me, but everybody in this book was so distinct! I was able to get a strong grasp on their stories and their emotions. Their stories were just as strong as they were in the first one. I loved seeing them again, and I loved seeing where they went. I was also surprised to see certain characters put front and center, and not exactly hating that fact. Still hate it a little bit, because [redacted] is [redacted].

While this book does take a sharper edge, the core of it is still love. Luca and Ama’s love for each burns so brightly, and I loved that it was so strong. It feels like a fire burning strong, and it envelopes the whole book. Plus, the love they both hold for their people, and their friends is at the forefront as well. They do what they do because they care, and for me, that’s what makes this book so amazing.

Also, I loved The Princes Bride Easter eggs! Now, I haven’t read or watched The Princess Bride (I know, I know), but I definitely caught one of them and I think connected a character to another!

This is such a small thing, but I want to mention it. Ama gets knocked out so often in this book haha. Like, I think at least three times. It’s not that I don’t think that’s not realistic, I’m just worried about her brain! I do not want her to have a serious brain injury!

The ending was a tad abrupt, but I honestly really loved it. I felt like encompassed the entire journey of this duology, and I can definitely get on board with more ambiguous endings!

Overall, this was a spectacular conclusion and book. Full of high stakes adventures, sword fighting, and brightly burning love, it’s an incredible book!

The Queen Will Betray You comes out July 6, 2021! You can add it on Goodreads and pre-order a copy in the meantime!

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