By Victoria Aveyard
Series: Red Queen #3
Ebook: 528 pages
Publication Date: February 7, 2017
My Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ( 5 out of 5 Stars )
In this breathless third installment 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.
The Red Queen Series has become, over time, one of my absolute favorite worlds to escape to. Miss Aveyard has managed to create a beautifully horrifying Classist society. The silvers are at the top of the social structure, hell-bent on destroying anyone who possesses red blood. The reds are nothing more than slaves. Laws are written by the elite silvers and are heavily in their favor, of course. I find myself able to draw parallels with the United States in the 19th century; rampant slavery, violence against rebellious slaves, no punishment for death of a slave because, hell, they are property and nothing else. Horrifying.
In this third book, Mare is imprisoned by King Maven. He hasn't gotten any less psycho since his mother died. I had hoped, maybe, with her not molesting his mind, that he would begin to grow and heal. It seems he has gotten even crazier and more obsessed with Mare. There were certain parts that he actually protects her as well, so.. I really don't know what to say about Maven. I feel like Mare would not be able to kill him if it came down to it. She still loves the boy she thought he was, which is completely ridiculous. She consistently mourns the loss of someone who never existed. It irritates me to no end. Maven locks her in his castle, surrounded by silent stone so that she has absolutely no magic. The constant oppression of the stone drains her energy, making it hard to even do normal things. Her health is deteriorating rapidly, with no hope for escape. She knows, no, hopes that the Scarlet Guard will not come for her. It would be a massacre and she cannot risk losing her closest friends to save herself. Without her lightning, she is again a nobody. Just a poor red girl surrounded by silvers who control every aspect of her life. Back where she came from, she feels helpless and lost. I enjoyed her character progression in this book. Her cockiness and selfishness fell away the longer she was without her power.
I must admit, I fell in love with Kilorn even more in King's Cage. He was supportive of Mare, yet not suffocating like the previous books. His self loathing is almost nonexistent. It seems he found his place in this world, and is doing everything he can to help the rebellion with no powers of his own. And Cal. Sigh. I am still completely in love with the idea of him and Mare being together. His shaky allegiance and questionable decisions aside, I want their relationship to work. His every horrible idea was put into place for the sole purpose of getting her back. I find that both noble and idiotic. Maybe more idiotic that anything though, with royal silvers now involved and allied with the Scarlet Guard. If these people can barely trust Cal, how in the hell will they ever trust royals who have zero plans to change anything?!
The Scarlet Guard. I really don't know what to think about their new alliances. Miss Aveyard has been stingy with information about the new countries that have joined the rebellion. My gut tells me not to trust them. Their new location seems to be too perfect, and all the details just fell into place a little too easily for me. The addition of massive amounts of newbloods from other countries was pretty sweet. Mare was able to find others with the power of lightning, and I feel like she learned a lot from them. The alliance with Evangeline and her family is even more shaky. I never trusted her, and her family is even more power hungry. The reader did get to see a different side to her in this book, and I began to understand her character a little better. That understanding though makes me even more worried for the future of her family's role in this world. Betrayal could come from all sides at this point in the story, and I have a feeling the next book will leave us heartbroken and ecstatic in the same breath. That ending of King's Cage, I must admit, made me cry like a little girl. I didn't see it coming, and I absolutely hate that it had to come to that. Until next year, we are left with the brokenness of that final decision, yet still holding onto a thin ray of hope that maybe, just maybe, it will all work out in the end...
“Maven Calore is not his own self. He told me as much. He is a construct, a creation of his mother's additions and subtractions. A mechanical, a machine, soulless and lost. What a horror, to know that someone like this holds our fates in the palm of his quivering hand.”
“Now I'm in a king's cage. But so is he. My chains are Silent Stone. His is the crown.”
“You aren’t alone.” The hope in his eyes cuts deeply. “You have your crown.”
“Those who know what it's like in the dark will do anything to stay in the light.”
| Red Queen | A Torch Against the Night |