Daily Archives: November 26, 2019

The Queen of Nothing – Holly Black

I was super excited for publication day for this one. I pre-ordered it on Amazon, and when I woke up and started the day, it wasn’t yet available to download. I was furious! Why hadn’t it been released at midnight! Why did I have to wait!

But thankfully, it actually popped up before I left for work, so I was able to start listening on my way into work. I then raced through the rest of it and finished it in about two days. A deeply satisfying conclusion to the trilogy.

The Queen of Nothing (Folk of the Air #3) – Holly Black

26032912._SY475_He will be destruction of the crown and the ruination of the throne.

Power is much easier to acquire than it is to hold onto. Jude learned this lesson when she released her control over the wicked king, Cardan, in exchange for immeasurable power.

Now as the exiled mortal Queen of Faerie, Jude is powerless and left reeling from Cardan’s betrayal. She bides her time determined to reclaim everything he took from her. Opportunity arrives in the form of her deceptive twin sister, Taryn, whose mortal life is in peril.

Jude must risk venturing back into the treacherous Faerie Court, and confront her lingering feelings for Cardan, if she wishes to save her sister. But Elfhame is not as she left it. War is brewing. As Jude slips deep within enemy lines she becomes ensnared in the conflict’s bloody politics.

And, when a dormant yet powerful curse is unleashed, panic spreads throughout the land, forcing her to choose between her ambition and her humanity…

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author Holly Black, comes the highly anticipated and jaw-dropping finale to The Folk of the Air trilogy.

I thoroughly, thoroughly enjoyed this book. Was it the most hard-hitting examination of societal prejudices through the lens of high fantasy? Nope. Nor was it the most intricately detailed world-building I’ve ever seen (although it certainly had some great world-building in there). It wasn’t the world’s most predictable plot, but nor was it stuffed full of jaw-dropping twists which had been breadcrumbed in, and which you can find with a careful re-examination of the preceding novels in the series. What I’m trying to say is that The Queen of Nothing is not Great Literature. It is, however, a thoroughly Great Book.

The Queen of Nothing picks up an indeterminate length of time after the previous installment, The Wicked King. Jude has been banished to the mortal realms until the Crown pardons her, so her status as High Queen of Faerie means precisely not a lot. But when her twin sister Taryn (who she still is NOT on good terms with, after the whole huge betrayal thing, stealing half the army, etc etc) comes seeking Jude’s help, Jude can’t help but plunge headfirst into the danger of the court of King Cardan. How could she not? She just has to see his eerily beautiful face again, because she love/hates him so much.

I loved this book. There it is. Frankly, I loved this entire series. It’s fun, it’s funny, it’s irreverent, it’s got solid plotting, it’s got an enemies to lovers story to DIE for, and it’s got betrayal heaped on top of betrayal heaped on top of betrayal. The Queen of Nothing is more of the greatness of the first two books, in spades, and then heaped up some more on top. Jude is running around killing people and fighting, despite being a puny, weak human. She’s scheming and plotting even when she doesn’t know she needs to scheme and plot. She’s also being swept up in the machinations of the faerie court in ways she cannot predict, which will turn the rest of her life to chaos. And I thoroughly enjoyed being swept along for the ride.

My major complaint with the previous book was totally resolved with this one (specifically, about the curse. Gotta be careful with those tricksy faerie wordings).

All in all, The Queen of Nothing builds on everything that was good about the previous books, and really doubles down. A thoroughly enjoyable romp through the Faerie lands, I have nothing really but praise for this. Word of warning, though – there’s constant, CONSTANT mentions of Cardan’s tail. It can be jarring, at times. But that’s it.

Five Stars
*****

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