King’s Cage (& Cruel Crown) by Victoria Aveyard // Book Review

Hello! How are you feeling? I hope you are well. Today I am bringing you my thoughts and feelings about King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard, as well as the prequel, Cruel Crown. This discussion may contain spoilers for Red Queen and Glass Sword, but none for King’s Cage. As always, this is my personal opinion, please don’t be offended if you disagree with me.

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Author: 
Victoria Aveyard

Number in series: Red Queen #3

Publisher: Orion Books (2017)

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance, Dystopian

Rating:
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Goodreads synopsis:
In this breathless third instalment to Victoria Aveyard’s bestselling Red Queen series, allegiances are tested on every side. And when the Lightning Girl’s spark is gone, who will light the way for the rebellion?
Mare Barrow is a prisoner, powerless without her lightning, tormented by her lethal mistakes. She lives at the mercy of a boy she once loved, a boy made of lies and betrayal. Now a king, Maven Calore continues weaving his dead mother’s web in an attempt to maintain control over his country—and his prisoner.
As Mare bears the weight of Silent Stone in the palace, her once-ragtag band of newbloods and Reds continue organizing, training and expanding. They prepare for war, no longer able to linger in the shadows. And Cal, the exiled prince with his own claim on Mare’s heart, will stop at nothing to bring her back.
When blood turns on blood, and ability on ability, there may be no one left to put out the fire—leaving Norta as Mare knows it to burn all the way down.

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God, I’m so torn about King’s Cage and the whole Red Queen series, honestly. It’s good, it’s mediocre, it’s not groundbreaking but it’s not completely horrible either. The amount of hype that surrounds this series though, is way over the top.

I feel like the main things people hate about this series, doesn’t bother me. For example, the writing – it can be a little dramatic but it’s okay; Mare – I don’t find her all that infuriating, she makes some really dumb decisions but I don’t mind her. I was trying to explain the story to my sister and I said that it’s like if The Hunger Games was set in the middle ages just with advanced technology.

King’s Cage dragged on a lot. There are about an extra 100 pages that didn’t need to be there, they were just so unnecessary. There are new perspectives from Evangeline and Cameron introduced, but unfortunately, I really didn’t care for Cameron’s perspective. Evangeline’s was interesting though. If I had gone into this book thinking it was the last one (as it was meant to be), I could have been rather disappointed.

Although, the ending was kinda disappointing anyway. What is with Mare and thinking that if anyone choosing something over her she thinks they are betraying her? The betrayal to revenge trope and plotline is getting so old now. So, if that really annoys you or if Mare really annoys you, the ending will infuriate you (as well as Mare, probably).

Now, I can’t stand Cal. Please don’t hate me, he’s just so whiny and acts like a spoilt little brat. The whole time Mare was under Maven’s captivity, he just sulked around, I can understand why but it wasn’t good. I really don’t like Mare and Cal together. Maven, on the other hand, I love him! I have never really been the one to like a villain (except for Star Wars) but I just really like Maven. I get that he’s evil and has an obsession with Mare, but I really like the idea of Mare and Maven together.

I also really like Farley, and my heart just breaks for her because of Shade. I like Kilorn too, I just wish he was more present in the story. If Mare can’t be with Maven, can she be with Kilorn? Or even Cameron. I would love to see more girl/girl relationships.

Now, King’s Cage started to impress me as it began to include some mental illness representation. Mare begins to struggle with a form of Depression, Anxiety attacks and PTSD which was so good to see represented in a fantasy/dystopian novel! But, just as it was getting more prominent, it vanished and Mare was suddenly cured. Which was highly frustrating and equally disappointing.

That’s really all I can think to talk about. I will be continuing the series, there’s only one book left in the series, I’ve come this far, why stop now? I recommend only if you are really committed to the series and the characters, if you didn’t enjoy Red Queen or Glass Sword, don’t bother.

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Author: 
Victoria Aveyard

Number in series: Red Queen 0.1-0.2

Publisher: Orion Books (2017)

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance, Dystopian

Rating:
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Goodreads synopsis:
Two women on either side of the Silver and Red divide tell the stories no one else knows.
Discover the truth of Norta’s bloody past in these two revealing prequels to #1 NEW YORK TIMES bestseller RED QUEEN.

Queen Song
Queen Coriane, first wife of King Tiberias, keeps a secret diary—how else can she ensure that no one at the palace will use her thoughts against her? Coriane recounts her heady courtship with the crown prince, the birth of a new prince, Cal, and the potentially deadly challenges that lie ahead for her in royal life.
Steel Scars
Captain Farley was raised to be strong, but being tasked with planting the seeds of rebellion in Norta is a tougher job than expected. As she travels the land recruiting black market traders, smugglers, and extremists for her first attempt at an attack on the capital, she stumbles upon a connection that may prove to be the key to the entire operation—Mare Barrow.6cbca6d9

This is just a quick discussion of the prequel of the Red Queen series, Cruel Crown by Victoria Aveyard.

Cruel Crown was fairly mediocre. The first short story, Queen Song, follows Cal’s mother as she gets married and learns the ways of the crown. It was rather boring and was just a stretched out version of the story we already knew, with some romance added. Coriane’s voice was so irritating to me, she was just too whimsical and honestly sounded like Professor Trelawny was pounding in my head.

Steel Scars follows Farley, which I loved. I was really excited to get to this short story and to learn more about the mysterious and rock-hard Captain Farley. I was surprised and pleased with what was delivered. Steel Scars has a sort of Illuminae layout with occasional emails and files passed between Farley and the rest of the Scarlet Guard, which is what was surprised me.

We also get a glimpse of how the relationship between Farley and Shade developed and grew which just broke my heart into a million pieces. I also really liked how Steel Scars leads right up until the beginning and part of the way into Red Queen but from Farley’s point of view.

Overall, Cruel Crown is great if you’re really into the Red Queen series just to get some extra background information but if you’re only half-hearted about the series, probably don’t bother.

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Thanks for reading if you made it this far! Let me know what you thought of King’s Cage, I would love to know! end card.jpeg

 

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4 thoughts on “King’s Cage (& Cruel Crown) by Victoria Aveyard // Book Review

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