Title: The Winner's CrimeAuthor: Marie Rutkoski
Published: 12 March 2015 by Bloomsbury Publishing
Source: Bloomsbury via netgalley in return for an honest review
Reviewed: Sapphired Dragon
I absolutely adored the first book in this series The Winner's Curse. I gave it 5 stars. I have to be honest though, this second instalment took me 2 separate goes to finish it. It actually took receiving book 3 for review, to go back and finish it. That being said though. I am so glad I did come back to it as the second half had me absolutely gripped to the pages, greedily devouring each page until the ending... The words exquisite agony come to mind. Needless to say. I am extremely glad to be able to move straight on to book 3 to see how it is all going to unfold.
I first started it shortly after I reviewed book 1 last year. I read it ravenously at first then I think I got distracted by something else and then never quite got back to it. When I picked it up again however last week, i found I could easily sink back into to the story and get caught up in all the intrigue till suddenly i was sitting shell shocked at the last page. What I really love about this series and this instalment is that there are so many different threads running through it and yet every thread is exactly where it needs to be, being expertly woven into the whole to make such a rich, detailed and authentic story.
The world building is incredible. Ms Rutkoski has created a such a vivid world, with such distinct countries and cultures and her writing really captures the brutalness of the Valourians conquests and campaigns and the desperateness of the conquered countries to both obtain their freedom and fight back against the Valourians and their brutal tactics. I think in this books we get to let much more about all of these countries and the people who both live and rule them and i think this really adds to the story and series as a whole.
There is so much intrigue in this story. I was genuinely scared for both Kestrel and Arin for a good portion of this book. And the emperor scares me with his evilness and constant game playing and loyalty tests. He always seems to be several steps ahead of everybody else and that just makes him dangerous. This goes together with my point about the many different threads. there s so much going on beneath the surface in this book and Ms Rutkoski gets the balance between suspense and reveal absolutely perfect
I am so very glad i finished this story and it truly was a gorgeous and thrilling read and if you will just excuse me now, i am off to read book 3 :-)
Even though I loved this book, because of my original false start with this book, I have to pull this otherwise flawless story back to 4 stars!
Sapphired Dragon xx .
About The Book:
The Winner's Crime (The Winner's Trilogy #2) by Marie RutkoskiPublication Date: 12 March, 2015