Series: Red Queen #3
Published by HarperCollins on February 7th 2017
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Fantasy, General, Romance, Royalty
Buy on: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks
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.
Even though I didn’t particularly love Glass Sword, I was eagerly anticipating the release of King’s Cage. This series has been a bit of hit or miss but the ending of the second book left me wondering what would happen next, and I couldn’t resist snagging the third novel. King’s Cage picks up a short while after the events of Glass Sword. In the novel, Mare is Maven’s prisoner. Readers get a glimpse at what her life has become as a captured enemy of the state, but we also get to see what’s happening with the resistance. I really enjoyed this, because it showed how life went on without Mare, and that the resistance is bigger than her. I also enjoyed reading how other characters viewed Mare as a person and leader.
In the novel, there are several points of view. Of course, Mare as the main protagonist gets a POV, but we also get to see the events from Cameron’s perspective, as well as Evangeline. All three of these women are vastly different, but also quite similar. As a captive, Mare has become humble and more tolerable as a character. For the first time, I actually didn’t mind reading her POV chapters. Instead of focusing on just herself, Mare was able to empathize with those around her, and see them in a new light. Cameron was my least favorite POV as she reminded me of Mare in the earlier books. I understand where she’s coming from as a character, but I just don’t like her. Surprisingly, the character POV I enjoyed the most was Evangeline’s. She’s been a villain in this series since the beginning, and it was great seeing things from her perspective. I also really enjoyed learning more about the Silver nobles and their machinations to obtain the crown.
“Maven is a talented liar, and I don’t trust a single word he speaks. Even if he was telling the truth. Even if he is a product of his mother’s meddling, a thorned flower forced to grow a certain way. That doesn’t change things. I can’t forget everything he’s done to me and so many others. When I first met him, I was seduced by his pain. He was the boy in shadow, a forgotten son. I saw myself in him. Second always to Gisa, the bright star in my parents’ world. I know now that was by design. He caught me back then, ensnaring me in a prince’s trap. Now I’m in a king’s cage. But so is he. My chains are Silent Stone. His is the crown.”
While I enjoyed the political intrigue, I feel that the romance aspect of the story was a tad annoying. For much of the book Mare and Maven are sharing scenes, and while I loved learning more about Maven, I didn’t really like his relationship with Mare. She’s supposedly in love with Cal, but it often seemed like she went back and forth in her feelings. I found that confusing given her circumstances as a prisoner. As for Cal, I find him a bit of a bore and hate his indecision. I won’t lie and claim not to have enjoyed how his storyline ended up in this novel, I just wish he had more of a personality. This was very disappointing, because I really liked him in Red Queen, and it feels as if his character has been watered down to make Maven seem more interesting. Which he is.
“I thought I knew what heartbreak was. I thought that was what Maven did to me. When he stood and left me kneeling. When he told me everything I ever thought him to be was a lie. But then, I believed I loved him.
I know now, I didn’t know what love was. Or what even the echo of heartbreak felt like.
To stand in front of a person who is your whole world and be told you are not enough. You are not the choice. You are a shadow to the person who is your sun.”
Overall, I really enjoyed this book, and recommend this to fans of the series. However, if you’ve walked away from the series after reading earlier books, then don’t bother. Many of the problems people find with this series still remain, and though this book was far better than Glass Sword, the improvements weren’t enough to move this series on any of my lists (re-read, favorite YA series, etc.) I’m enjoying it enough to read the fourth book, and will like to know how everything resolves itself. I do have a few major complaints about the “diversity” in the book, but that would make this review much longer than I intend. Besides, I’d hate to spoil readers who haven’t gotten around to reading this yet, so if you’re interested comment below and I’ll definitely talk with you about it there.