Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Crimson Crown by Cinda Williams Chima

This is the FOURTH and final book in the Seven Realms series. Click each title to read my reviews of The Demon King, The Exiled Queen, and The Gray Wolf Throne.
A thousand years ago, two young lovers were betrayed—Alger Waterlow to his death, and Hanalea, Queen of the Fells, to a life without love.

Now, once again, the Queendom of the Fells seems likely to shatter apart. For young queen Raisa ana’Marianna, maintaining peace even within her own castle walls is nearly impossible; tension between wizards and Clan has reached a fevered pitch. With surrounding kingdoms seeking to prey on the Fells’ inner turmoil, Raisa’s best hope is to unite her people against a common enemy. But that enemy might be the person with whom she's falling in love.

Through a complicated web of lies and unholy alliances, former streetlord Han Alister has become a member of the Wizard Council of the Fells. Navigating the cut-throat world of blue blood politics has never been more dangerous, and Han seems to inspire hostility among Clan and wizards alike. His only ally is the queen, and despite the perils involved, Han finds it impossible to ignore his feelings for Raisa. Before long, Han finds himself in possession of a secret believed to be lost to history, a discovery powerful enough to unite the people of the Fells. But will the secret die with him before he can use it?

A simple, devastating truth concealed by a thousand-year-old lie at last comes to light in this stunning conclusion to the Seven Realms series.
I can't believe it's actually over.
It's heartbreaking, really. 
I feel like I've devoted so much time to this series-- I even preordered this, the final book, back in April and waited (and waited and waited....) until October 23rd for it to be released. Pathetic, I know.
I don't think I can say it enough-- I absolutely love this series. And I know it's super lame but I really am heartbroken that it's over. I thought this was such a wondrefully written conclusion, even though at times it felt a little less....climactic.... than I was expecting. After my review of The Demon King, I've totally eaten my words. Ever since then I've been trying to make up for it.
I was impressed with how much Raisa had grown between the last book and now. She was more gutsy and fierce and brave now as Queen of the Fells than she ever was as princess. She's someone I'd want to hang out with... but never get on her bad side! The same goes for Han. He has always been a little rough around the edges (in an endearing way) but in this book, I really felt like he came into his own and embraced his bloodline. Again, he's someone I'd want to get to know, but not if I was on his hit list.
There were so many secrets that were brought to light in this conclusion that at times I felt like my head was spinning. Throughout the entire story, it was difficult to tell who was actually fighting for good and who was secretly wreaking havoc and leaving destruction in their path. Many times, someone good was causing trouble and someone bad was trying to redeem himself or herself--even if it was only momentarily.
This book was full of betrayal and heartache and adventure and love. Everything I expected from Cinda Williams Chima and more. If you haven't read this series yet, I very highly recommend it. This is honestly my favorite series I've ever read. Don't get stuck in the first book and give up. It is slow at first but by the end of the book, you'll be dying to continue the story in the next 3 books. I promise!
Happy Reading!

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