Thursday, April 18, 2019

The Shadow Queen by C.J. Redwine ~ Review

Lorelai Diederich, crown princess and fugitive at large, has one mission: kill the wicked queen who took both the Ravenspire throne and the life of her father. To do that, Lorelai needs to use the one weapon she and Queen Irina have in common—magic. She’ll have to be stronger, faster, and more powerful than Irina, the most dangerous sorceress Ravenspire has ever seen.

In the neighboring kingdom of Eldr, when Prince Kol’s father and older brother are killed by an invading army of magic-wielding ogres, the second-born prince is suddenly given the responsibility of saving his kingdom. To do that, Kol needs magic—and the only way to get it is to make a deal with the queen of Ravenspire, promise to become her personal huntsman…and bring her Lorelai’s heart.

But Lorelai is nothing like Kol expected—beautiful, fierce, and unstoppable—and despite dark magic, Lorelai is drawn in by the passionate and troubled king. Fighting to stay one step ahead of the dragon huntsman—who she likes far more than she should—Lorelai does everything in her power to ruin the wicked queen. But Irina isn’t going down without a fight, and her final move may cost the princess the one thing she still has left to lose.

I've been in the re-telling mood so I picked up this book.  It's a good retelling of Snow White.  There is much I enjoyed about it and one thing I didn't.

The story is crafted in a rich fantasy world with magic and dragon shifters.  There are many kingdoms settled near each other, where each has a strength.  But one kingdom has been stolen from it's people to serve the false Queen Irina.  The Princess and Prince fled after their parents are killed before them.  This sets the stage for a nine year battle to regain the kingdom and free the people from the obsessive magic of Irina.  I enjoyed this world and can see that it sets the stage for more tales.

I also enjoyed the characters.  They are strong and well rounded.  I felt for them and cheered for them.  I loved Lorelai.  She struggles with the fear of facing Irina again.  She plans and strategizes to make sure she won't fail.  She's always looking for the safe way through.  But she has to grow into her power and some of her failures are painful.  She is a good person and will make a good Queen.

Other characters also drew me.  I really didn't like Irina, which tells you how well she is written.  I fell hard for Kol.  He truly has the building blocks of leadership in his character.  When he has to hold the country together, he gives more than his all to accomplish it.  I liked him so much.  Lorelai's brother and her protector also captured my heart.  All of the characters kept me reading to find out what would become of them.

I think the flaw in this book is the dramatics.  What I mean by that is the number of times that the same hopeless situation is recounted for the reader.  It stops the action of the story.  It reminds all of the impossible task.  I didn't like this part.  I felt it was appropriate in a few places but the technique was overused.  I began skimming that part to find the story again.  If not for that part, I think this book could have been a solid 5 star read.  

I did love how the relationship developed.  I loved how strong Lorelai is and that she saved so many people.  I love how Kol saved her...though I saw it coming.  I feel like the story is so much richer than a lot of retellings.  

I'm sure I'll continue reading the series at some point.  I do hope later books have less of the restating of the dire situations and more focus on the story itself.


1 comment:

  1. Oh I remember really enjoying the dragon aspect of this one! I never did finish the series though lol. Glad you enjoyed and great review!