Book Review: The Crown of Embers by Rae Carson

the girl of fire and thorns 2

This book was a pleasant surprise. I didn’t expect to like this as much as I did. After the ending of The Girl of Fire and Thorns, Elisa is a Queen trying to rule. But she is only seventeen and her age and her place of birth undermine her authority. The Lords of her Quorum try to outmaneuver her at every step, trying to prove her incompetence, coaxing her to consider appointing a regent or marry for an alliance. On the other side, there are multiple assassination attempts on her in her own capital, and the question remains if the enemies are outside or within. Amidst all this, there is also the pull towards fulfilling her destiny as God’s Chosen One. Will she be the Queen she wants to be? Will she survive? Who should she trust?

The character development of Elisa is amazing in this book. Most of the first half, lots of things are happening around her and she is young and vulnerable and not in control. The intrigue and betrayals and politics of the court stifle her confidence but she starts asserting herself once she is out of the capital. She makes plans, decides what she wants to do, proving to herself that she can be the Queen she is meant to be. Her growth is remarkable and the ending was awesome.

Hector – I didn’t see this coming. He was Elisa’s good friend in the first book but it grows into so much more. They trust each other, want to keep each other safe and respect each other immensely. I can’t speak much more without spoilers but their romance and their conversations are just intense, angsty and so full of love, it’s adorable.

I also loved Mara’s character. She and Elisa develop a great friendship and I want to appreciate how both of them discuss their personal lives and are so confident about their bodies and sexuality. I really really adore female friendships and this bond is special. Storm was a surprise. I was skeptical about him for the most part but I might just have started to like him towards the end. I hated Ximena in this book. I couldn’t believe that she refused to see Elisa as anything other than the God’s vessel here to fulfill her destiny. She really got what was coming to her.

The ending is both terrifying and exhilarating at once and I am very excited to see Elisa kick some ass in the next book and finally achieve what she deserves.

Rating: ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

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