As promised last week, a review of the sequel to Grace and Fury. (Click on that title to read last week's review.
Queen of Ruin by Tracy Banghart
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is the second, and possibly final, book in the Grace and Fury series that I reviewed last week, and this one has an actual ending, thankfully. I think the two books could be combined into one rather than leaving the first one on a cliffhanger with no ending.
While most of the situations in this book were unrealistic, I think that is part of its charm. At the end of book one, Grace (Serena) is attempting to get the other prisoners on Mount Ruin to revolt. They have all learned to fight to provide entertainment and gambling opportunities for the guards, but she believes they can turn on the guards and get control of the island. And when a boat shows up, she hopes they can subdue the guards and commandeer the ship to take them to Azura, rather than return to Viridia, where they will hopefully be free.
Her sister Nomi is on her way to that very prison, Mount Ruin, after witnessing Asa kill his father, the Superior, and attempt to kill both his brother Malachi, the Heir, and even stabbing her. The Heir appears to be dying from his wounds, and he, Nomi, and another Grace who had accidentally seen this happen (Maris) are headed toward the very prison where her sister has been punished. Nomi has a plot to get back at Asa, as unlikely as it is, but she will have to get free from the guards both on the boat and at the prison once she arrives. The stakes have never been higher if they are to change any of the oppression in Viridia.
Again, a sub-theme of the book is female empowerment. I believe this could have a positive affect on younger readers, but due to some descriptions which are slightly suggestive in nature, I think I would recommend it for grades 7 and above. I'm waaayyyy above that age, and I enjoyed it, so it's not just for teenagers.
The author chose to explain some of the underlying symbolism, but not all of it. I think it is better to allow the audience to infer and draw conclusions on their own. The pacing of this book was spot-on. There were very few dull parts and mostly action, adventure, and suspense. Tracy Banghart did a great job. I believe the end of book two could lend itself to another sequel, but even if it doesn't, I'm satisfied with the ending.
View all my reviews