Title: The Exiled Queen
Series: Seven Realms, #2
Author: Cinda Williams Chima
Category: Young Adult
Genre: Fantasy/ Romance/ Adventure
Rating: 5 stars out of 5
Haunted by the loss of his mother and sister, Han Alister journeys south to begin his schooling at Mystwerk House in Oden’s Ford. But leaving the Fells doesn’t mean that danger isn't far behind. Han is hunted every step of the way by the Bayars, a powerful wizarding family set on reclaiming the amulet Han stole from them. And Mystwerk House has dangers of its own. There, Han meets Crow, a mysterious wizard who agrees to tutor Han in the darker parts of sorcery—but the bargain they make is one Han may regret.
Meanwhile, Princess Raisa ana’Marianna runs from a forced marriage in the Fells, accompanied by her friend Amon and his triple of cadets. Now, the safest place for Raisa is Wein House, the military academy at Oden's Ford. If Raisa can pass as a regular student, Wein House will offer both sanctuary and the education Raisa needs to succeed as the next Gray Wolf queenEverything changes when Han and Raisa’s paths cross, in this epic tale of uncertain friendships, cut-throat politics, and the irresistible power of attraction.
Now a days it is very rare, and hard, for me to get lost in a high end fantasy book. I used to adore them when I was younger, not so much now. Sad, I know. So, to find a fantasy book that enthralls me, captures my attention, and leaves me craving more is an amazing thing. The Seven Realms series is just that kind of fantasy I love to get lost in.
The Exiled Queen was just as amazing as the first book in the series, maybe even more so. The development of the story, the world, the characters, and the plot is even more in-depth than the first book. More mysteries come into view, new characters, and even a bit of intense adventure. Don’t forget the hardcore politics, and the sizzling romance. All in all, this is a fantasy book that garbs me by the toes and completely made me remember why I love fantasy!
Han had accepted their offer. Accused of murder, orphaned by his enemies, hunted by the Queen's Guard and the powerful High Wizard, Gavan Bayar, he'd had no choice. The pressure of past tragedies drove him forward- That, and a smoldering desire for revenge.
The book picks up, of course in an amazing way, but not long after the first book ended. I was just as enthralled and completely immersed back into the world created by Cinda as I was by the first book. The characters are all there and I can tell they have grown so much since the last time.
Han, the ex-street lord, now turned wizard, really has a lot on his plate. Now, he is entangled up in the clans, the war he never wanted a part of, the wizards, and a darkness he isn't really prepared for. Han got tested a lot in this one, and he really is an amazing character. Though it still seems bad luck is always knocking on his door. The growth in him is amazing to watch, and it made me really like his character even more than I did in the first book. But he still has a long way to go.
Raisa, like Han, has been tossed into a world she wasn’t really prepared for. Since the last book, Raisa’s whole world has been turned upside down. She is a strong character, and the kind of female character I love. Strong, determined, and a bit stubborn, she never gives up and doesn’t back down. Now, despite the fact that Raisa kind of falls for almost every guy, I couldn’t really not like her character. She even explains that she is a romantic at heart. It made me understand her more. But when she really falls in love, she knows it. She also shows good growth in this book as well.
All the characters are well-developed and well-rounded. Each has a story, and each make a great addition to the book, bringing in more depth to the already largely built world that Cinda has created.
Now, the book isn’t only just romance, but the bit of romance that was thrown in was done well. I enjoyed the meeting and the developed of both Raisa and Han; how they grow together. The development of their feelings is natural and slow.
As I mentioned, the book is not just romance, it a great dose of adventure, gripping suspense, twist and turns, and some mystery. Events that took place in the first book finally become clear; however, even more mysteries do arise. The world in this book is detailed, well-developed, and mixed with intriguing characters, landscapes, alluring magic, captivating action, and enthralling adventure. To me, the book never lagged or felt to be moving too slow.
I refuse to die here, Raisa said to the wolf. I'm just sixteen. I have too much to do. The wolf shook itself, flinging bits of ice into the fire. The flames sputtered and popped, sending sparks skyward. It bared its teeth, growling, followed by three sharp yips. Was it some kind of sign? A pathway to follow? Raisa came up to her knees, leaning forward, hands clenched.
Cinda knows how to tell a story and her writing is magical! She really created another world, very in-depth, but not so confusing I’m totally lost.
The Exiled Queen was even better than the first book. Intense politics, amazing twists and turn, beautiful romance, and an overwhelming adventure. I definitely recommend this book to those who love a good high end fantasy read!