King's Cage (Red Queen, #3)by Victoria Aveyard Published 07 Feb 2017
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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.
"King's Cage (Red Queen, #3)" Reviews
“Somewhere in the distance, somewhere in my bones, thunder rolls.”
If Red Queen was a game of charade and Glass Sword was a game changer, then King's Cage is a reincarnation of the two, manipulation and war and survival and politics woven into its essence, but on a whole other level. No longer a hide and seek playground, but a chessboard where powerful masterminds control kings and queens and princes and princesses and many, many pawns to fight for the ultimate trophy -- the throne of Norta. Organized chaos that was delicious to watch unfold.
Glass Sword ended with a jaw-dropping twist that meant the focus in this continuation will transfer to the dynamic between Mare and Maven. I stopped comparing Maven and The Darkling a long time ago and rightfully so -- whereas with The Darkling I always felt an inkling of hope for redemption, with Maven there is only the clinical dissecting of his behavior and attitudes that give no room for such innocent naivety. What brought me emotionally to my knees was not the revelation that he really is a pawn through and through, even after his mother's death, but that he is aware of it and he accepts his damned fate, molding to the villain persona by his own accord. He is a four-geared system that runs on hate, anger, fear and twisted love. Maven is a victim and you cannot help but feel pity for him. The what ifs of what he could have become without Elara's interference are a stark reminder that monsters are made, not born.
“The pain makes you stronger. Love makes you weak.”
Maven's obsession with Mare is another side-effect. It's honestly so sad to watch his inability to change and to love normally. His mind is perpetually assaulted by paranoia and loneliness, continuously eating at his ghost of a soul. He astounds through his cunningness and cleverness, many underestimating him. But he is his mother's son, after all, and the legacy leaves behind both scars and advantages. Mare is the one that knows him best and they use each other to survive a royal cage that, paradoxically, suffocates them both.
Mare Barrow goes through her biggest character development yet. Our heroine grows so much, even through trauma. I love that, despite the fact that she has been put through hell, she doesn't let herself get sucked into the void. She still smiles, she still loves, she doesn't lose hope. Her sparks, even though kept away in tangible form, reside inside herself and allow her to live. And I loved the fact that she is portrayed in fear lots of time -- it doesn't make her weak, on the contrary; the fear brings out her deepest survival instincts, giving her a shot of winning the battle against greater opponents that loom over her shoulder. Much like Maven. And goddamn it, she fights, with her mind, with her body. She fights to not become a skeleton trapped in a prison, mentally and physically.
I also adored her demeanor towards Maven, taking advantage of his weakness for her, but always trying to bring him on the right path. Their dialogue is beautiful, mirroring two broken souls, trying to outsmart each other. They find refuge in one another, no matter how twisted and toxic. And Mare, at least, finally gets a clearer picture about this plague of a boy.
“She was his hurricane, and every nudge pulled him deeper into the eye of the storm.”
May I please fangirl about Cal? This romantic, strong, intelligent, caring, naive, hot, intense, good fucKING SILVER PRINCE THAT TAKES THE WRONG DECISION AND CANNOT CUT THE CRAP OF THOSE WHO WANT TO USE HIM AND CANNOT KEEP HIS PROMISES. Sorry. That must have been a bit harsh. But it's the truth. I honestly love him to bits. His love for Mare turns me to a blubbering mess. His hope for Maven is crushing. His friendship with Kilorn warms my heart. But fucking hell he's still Prince Tiberias the Seventh and his identity bites everyone in the ass, especially himself. AND HE'S A GODDAMN STUPID IDIOT. Okay, I'm done ranting.
“It’s not his fault the lightning girl loves him, and he must bear the curse that love brings with it.”
The romance between this sweet yet insufferable young man and our dearest Mare melted my heart. The mutual support, the understanding, the goofiness, the sexiness, the courage to break stereotypes... ALL OF IT is just wonderful. *sigh*
I need to give lots of claps for one character in particular, or rather Aveyard's flawless constructing of it, making me feel something I have never contemplated in the first two books: love for Evangeline Samos. However, don't imagine something along the lines of the sudden angelic rendering of Celeste in The One, for instance. Far from it. Evangeline is still the quintessential bitch. But I adored how she upgraded from a mere queen-wannabe that has only arrogance, ambition and jealousy as main traits to a deeply intriguing, multi-layered and surprising anti-heroine. Again, readers can regard her as another one who was made. Made for being a queen, made for being perfect, made for her family's well being. We have her POV as well, not necessarily as a mechanism to see from a different perspective, but to offer further glimpses into a universe governed by politics, secrets, manipulation and, of course, power. Throughout it all, she remains strong as steel, kickass and terrifying, splendid when she is gradually humanized through the unraveling of her desires and fears in a manner that highlights her internal conflict: freedom and love or duty and submission?
“Be the best, the strongest, the smartest, the most deadly and the most cunning. The most worthy. And I was everything.”
As usual, the secondary characters pretty much rocked. Farley is awesome. Julian is awesome. Sara is awesome. Kilorn, we don't see as much, but he is comforting in a familiar way. The whole Samos family is pretty much badass in a disturbing way and I devoured their scenes. The Colonel, a Premier named Davidson, newbloods, Reds and Silvers alike expand the borders of what we previously knew. Old queens, new kings, ruthless princes and princesses and faraway commanders make up the backbone of the Lakelands, Piedmont, Montfort and, of course, Norta, forging the world-building aspect.
The rhythm had some off-beats here and there. Personally, I associated them with Cameron's POV. She was a bit hard to stomach, even though she is definitely the no-bullshit type. Progressively, I learned to like her, but the reason why I cut down on the rating is partly thanks to her as well. The other motive is the fact that Mare's imprisonment to Maven, although seductive and psychologically-embedded, was slow-burning in a frustrating way, grating on my nerves for the lack of action. It was like I was simultaneously wasting away along Mare, unable to speed up the process.
The ending of this book left my heart in shambles, because I saw it coming miles away. Didn't lessen the pain though. It leaves the story at a precarious tipping point, a crossroads of a sort, with certain revelations confirming what I've been dreading: the last book will equate to death. As a dedicated fangirl, I fear for my mental stability after the next installment closes the story.
King's Cage is a great follow-up in a thrilling and exciting series. The story of this novel will have resounding echoes in the last book (ohmygodjustonemorebook). The grand, masterful blend of action and politics and romance had my head spinning, awed, and the characters infuse a unique vibe to an already mesmerizing mix of dystopia and fantasy. I cannot recommend these books enough.
Actual footage of my reaction to this book:
It's about a king in a cage but also a girl in a cage made by a king! OMG! Do you get it? Do you get the symbolism? Are you impressed yet? Are you impressed?
Lady, save it, please. I got halfway through this and I just couldn't do it anymore, so I ended up donating it. For that reason only it was worth £10.99. I hope the person who got this book really enjoyed it and got a lot more out of it than I did because I was spitting tacks the entire time it was in my hands.
The truth is that this series seriously pisses me off. Maybe that's over the top (granted, as a person, I am fundamentally over the top) but I am sick to death of books like this that are nothing but overblown cash-guzzlers. This book has nothing of value to add to the conversation and yet it thinks it does, and it has the gall to try to be "current" and "political" when it's about fucking nothing. I feel the same way about this series as I did about that Bone Season thing and bitch, do not get me started on The Bone Season. That book can see me next bloody Tuesday.
Why does this series rile me up so much? Probably because its so unbelievably redundant, and yet it pats itself on the back for being so clever, all the time. 'Oh, look at me,' this book says. 'I'm so in tune with current events and politics and I stand up for what's right!' But you don't. You don't add anything new and you certainly don't add anything from a perspective that I'm remotely interested in. I was promised "grey" characters, and that's certainly what I got: grey, dull, empty, lifeless cardboard cutouts stumbling around an underdeveloped plot, pulling the wool over my eyes while it serves as pure filler until the last book in this series. This series was never meant to be four books - it was supposed to be a trilogy, and it should definitely have stuck to that, because what we've got here is something like five hundred pages of nothing, while the narrative shamelessly BEGS us to get on board with Mare.
I am never going to like this heroine. Ever. I don't care how hard TPTB push the narrative that misogyny is the only reason why nobody likes her. I hate Mare because she is a shite character with shite inner monologue that I genuinely could not care less about if I tried. I don't care how forcefully the other characters in these books try to construct a personality for her - she doesn't have one. She is a limp, wet piece of lettuce. She is a period stain on the underwear of literature. I cannot stand her, and I am not about to lie down and accept being told how I feel, as if a marketing team knows me better than I know myself. I'm not about to accept some bullshit allegation that the only reason I hate her is because she's a woman. Like?? What?? Don't. Like I said, save it. People hate Mare because she is toxic and moronic and her narration is so laughably self-serious, peppered with these cringey outbursts of "snark" or "sass" that don't come close to being relatable or entertaining.
Let me tell you something: I loathe this "spunky, sassy" thing. It is a piece of nonsense. What woman can relate to that. Women, please tell me if any of these heroines that have been labelled "spunky" have been relatable to you. Because to me it sounds like a lot of bullshit. It sounds like a cliche, like a patronizing mockery of women who actually are dryly funny, who stand up for themselves, who are clever with their humour. I am not ever going to buy this "sassy heroine" thing. Do you know what it sounds like? I sounds like the heroine is going to be dry and hilarious and outspoken. Do you know what actually ends up happening? The heroine has an unfunny, grating inner monologue, and when she cracks some lame half-joke that isn't remotely amusing, all of the male characters around her will pat her on the head, sigh, and fawn about how she's "one of the guys".
I'm not keen on Sabaa Tahir's current series, but I do genuinely like Sabaa Tahir, and when she stops writing that Ashes in the Night thing, whatever it's called, I will read more of her books, because she is an author who, despite all of the issues I have with her works, never fell into this trap. She didn't do that bloody "snarky heroine" thing. It has no place in this sort of self-serious book. That's not to say that self-serious books can't have dry, funny heroines, but they have to be written smartly, and smart is the last thing this book is. If this book is smart, then my ass, who can't even do the seven times table, is a fucking mathematical prodigy.
Here's my problem with this series: there has never been a time when it wasn't generic, and that's a given, but with my hand on my heart I can say that the first book had promise. It was fine and even enjoyable in parts. But you only have to look at the ratings for this series, and the dying hype, to see that along the way, something has gone seriously wrong. I don't know if the spark just died, or if marketing pressure forced the author to stretch this series into four books - but what I can tell by reading it is that this is not even close to this author's best work. Since posting this review, I've been heckled and hounded and cursed at, but I will not change my stance on this, as it seems more and more apparent, the more I learn and think about it: this is not a passion project. There is no fire and brimstone in the writing, storytelling, or character arcs. There has been no love and devotion put into it. It is dry, sallow, and clinical. It's depressing, but not for the reasons that it wants to be.
The more that I think about this, and the more desperate stans tell me that I'm stupid and can't read (nice try. Bye, Felicia) the surer I am that something went wrong here. Ratings for series generally go up with each book, as people who didn't like the premise or the writing drop off after the first or second book, thus the people who're going to pick up the last book are generally fans or at least keen on the series; it's very unusual to have peaks and troughs in ratings as this series does. I do wonder what happened, and I wonder why the hype was so pithy upon the release of the last book in a series that must have taken about 5+ years to write in full. So what the hell happened? This book is just such a fucking fail. It's just phoning it in and that's not good enough.
After the second book in this series, I told myself no more; but Glass Sword wasn't bad enough for a DNF. I got through it. But this marks never again. I would rather do that 1000 DEGREE GLOWING KNIFE thing on my own foot than read the fourth book. I would rather rub chillies in my eyes.
I mean, I think we're done here.
"You ask how much of it was me," he whispers. "Some. Enough."
DEAR MARE, STOP PICKING THE WRONG BROTHER.
***Warning, spoilers abound, do not continue with this review unless you have read the book.****
First of all, I CALLED IT. I KNEW that we'd be getting lots of Maven and seeing the boy behind the villain's mask in this one. And PRAISE THE BOOK GODS, I'm so glad Victoria didn't let me down. She gave us all those moments we hoped for, the explanation, the moments of fragility, the tension, everything... She gave me a beautiful, tragic, tormented villain who fell in love with the wrong girl.
....I say wrong because Mare does not deserve this Darkling, this twisted Warner of a king. Her reaction to his kiss, during the vulnerable tenuous moment between the two was what finally convinced me to give up on their love story (whereas in Shatter Me you could pick up on something in Warner & Juliette's kiss, here there's nothing. It's gone, alright, I get the message. Mare feels nothing but disgust, it's a "violation of the worst kind" -she's in control and she'll never pick the villain). While I have never felt the spark between Mare and Cal (yup, even in this book including that scene), she's never going to be Maven's. That's fine, I'll take him. Mare doesn't deserve him, even though Maven is more like her than Cal will ever be.
This is a boy who was crippled from birth by an evil woman so terrible he doesn't know what thoughts are his. I just want him to have a happily ever after. But there is none. This boy is darkness incarnate and I have a feeling he's going to end up doing something noble to save Cal or Mare or his people in the next (final) book (to redeem himself the only way a villain can) and I just can't cope.
The first book is still my favorite, but King's Cage gave me so many beautiful twisted lines. Victoria is a master of powerful prose, and she delivered some exceptional ones --as you might expect, my favorite ones were his.
"Love makes you weak. And she's right. I learned that before I even knew you."
"I'm not a fool, little lightning girl. If you're going to play in my head, I'm going to play in yours. It's what we're good at."
.... I could try to write a review of this entire book, but let's be honest, I read it for Maven and I don't have the heart to write everything up because I'm in mourning for a ship that will never sail.
(yes, I realize Maven does not have blonde hair but this gif fits perfectly)
I AM SO IMPRESSED RIGHT NOW. You can seriously feel the work that went into developing everything here. (And there aren't any major spoilers in this review, but I did drop some book quotes in... so you have been warned).
First things first: I went into this without many expectations because I loved Red Queen but really wasn’t huge on Glass Sword. So maybe give this one a shot even if you didn’t like the second book. I do get the complaints about Glass Sword! Mare’s personality or way of handling her situation got a bit too unrelatable for me in that book (I just didn’t want to sit through that much of a sulky, withdrawn narrator). Plus, it was hard to get a sense of Maven as a villain since he wasn't around much. I summed up the second book with: "the majority of this book felt like it happened offstage or danced around any real character growth, plot development, and romance. It was mostly super depressing."
I was shocked by how much I connected with Mare and the whole story here, though! Everything worked for me. There’s a much stronger sense of unity and solidarity among the characters, too… like there’s HOPE and something to get behind. The plot still felt more like Glass Sword than Red Queen, but the character growth and world were so strong that I loved it.
The story starts with Mare as Maven's prisoner, but gets wonderfully complicated as it delves into their twisted relationship. It's all just SO WELL DONE. Maven's mother literally molded his mind throughout his life to the point where he's no longer sure which parts are his own. She even turned his love for Mare into an obsession. And there's still a small part of Mare that cares about Maven (or is at least empathetic) even though she wants to kill him:
He is a monster still, a monster always. And yet I can't stop myself from listening. Because I could be a monster too. If given the wrong chance. If someone broke me, like he is broken.
Monsters are made. So was Maven. Who knows who he was supposed to be.
The story never excuses Maven's actions, by the way. Victoria Aveyard is very clear that this is not a relationship that will ever be good (or happen). So even though I don’t ship Mare and Maven, I still LOVE how complicated everything is between them.
He stares up at me. "Those who know what it's like in the dark will do anything to stay in the light."
"Don't act like we're the same."
"The same? No." He shakes his head. "But perhaps... we're even?”
Stories with black & white characters or shallow villains get old for me really fast because it's unbelievable. Maven's character completely worked:
"You think I enjoy seeing you like this? he murmurs. "You think I want to keep you a prisoner?" Something hitches in his breath. "It's the only way you'll stay with me.”
Even though I know what he's doing, even though I can feel his grip on me tightening, I can't stop it from pulling me under. It would be too easy to let myself drown. Part of me wants to.
So Mare's dealing with a lot of grief, loneliness, and PTSD, but the way it's carried out in this book is super realistic. She's totally broken and starts to feel gratitude to Maven for the most basic acts of humanity. Watching her grapple with everything was actually one of my favorite parts this time around. She somehow finds the strength to fight again and is a totally relatable character you WANT to support. All of her thoughts and actions make sense and she has so much growth over the course of the story:
It would be easy to stay in the dark, to drown. Slowly, I lower my hands and force myself to look at the sunlight.
And Maven's actually a really smart king and knows he has to win the Reds over to his side. I won't spoil the main plot, but the politics get awesome as we learn more about the history of Red oppression and see different kings take action on their own plans.
The other main POV is Cameron, who's still searching for her brother. She's a great character and her insights balanced the story by sharing what's happening with the Scarlet Guard and showing another side to people like Cal and Mare. Lines like "no wonder [Mare] has personality issues. No one tells the girl the truth about anything" helped me get past how the two girls acted in Glass Sword. And Cameron's observations make it even more clear how Cal refuses to actually take a stand or pick a side. He was another character with painfully realistic flaws... aaaand I suppose I thought the romance was sweet, but I'm not really here for any ship.
Ooh I almost forgot -- the ongoing theme of how we’re all partially made by someone else came through even more in Evangeline’s POV. (Speaking of how this book surprised me… how is Evangeline my new favorite character?! Did not expect that). Just seeing WHY she did everything and how she handles the heartbreaking situation she’s in definitely made her more sympathetic. I wouldn’t mind an entire book just about her!
OTHER AWESOME STUFF I LOVED:
- The acknowledgements are not messing around
- A major character turns out to be gay and it’s not her defining story
- Mare’s skin is straight up described as “brown” several times instead of dancing around some kind of “tan/sunkissed” vague description. The on-page PoC rep is clear
- the story deals with PTSD well
- EPIC BATTLE SCENES omg so manyyyyy
- there were still funny parts despite depressing circumstances
- less animosity between female characters
Oh, and all of the YA author shoutouts were hilarious! One line is “Caz, Brecker, with us!” and then there's a part about “Daraeus and Alexandrat are sworn allies to Bracken.”
So yeah, "King's Cage" turned out to be the most brilliant title ever. Everyone’s trapped in some situation or cage by one king or another (even Maven is in one of his own making). The ending was super intense and I loved it all. This series really is one of my favorites now!!
Side note: you could honestly skim Glass Sword or read a summary and still get this book.
3.5 Stars... So politic and sh*t this wrench my gut.
What can I say? This series kept more and more like a dystopian fiction, more than being high fantasy. However, I like this one a bit better that Glass Sword due to politic game, more Maven, and because THIS ONE GAVE ME MANY FEELSSS *angry* *giddy* *angry* *giddy* and then *wrathhhhhh*, not made me all bored like GS!
1. CAl & MARE and Politic attitudes.
I love that the characters are not totally black or white. There are what they are because of how they been raised, their family background, and whatever around them.
Cal & Mare, as much as I'm frustrated of how different attitudes of Cal and Mare are ( and we know they love each other! ) but they just didn't get along well about their politic thoughts. *love* bicker* *love* bicker* *ugh* BUT in other way, it's interesting for me to see how they insist on what they believe. ( Not like some Soup Opera 'Oh I love you, I will give up my revenge and choose to be with you' boo )
Cal is Silver, been born and raise like a Silver. Mare is new blood ( but her heart is Red ) Their issue and scene is just SO WHATTT?!?!????? [spoilers removed] But I don't judge them. I don't think Cal or Mare is right or wrong. They always remind me of two sides ( in my society ) in politic days. Silver aka. Superior one & Red aka. Inferior one that's why I understand them both. *Except if I read this in politic days, I might be RAGEEEE at one of them here because I pick a side* Hahahaha but now no I like them both.
2. More MAVEN and his complicated character
Love this one of how it gave me many pages of Maven ( which is my favorite parts among all ). Gosh how I love his character. This boy is broken, complex, and interesting. We saw how he love Mare, have soft spots for her, BUT He is still wicked and cunning ( Not bad turns good in sudden just because of looovvve ) Whatever, He love her in his poisonous way & Their tension IS the BEST! Goshh His Love. Her Hatred. Just wrench my gut! My Heart bleed and I'm in pain.
So it comes to my complaint... ARE TWO BOYS LOVE HER NOT ENOUGH!!!!????? In Glass Sword, I remember I felt sorry so much for Killoin. and I pray, I PRAY that my favorite boy Maven will not love Mare like Killon does. Then I read King's Cage and what I got? Gosh He love her, love so much. His confession made my heart giddy and hurt cuz I'm afraid to know the end. As much as I'm happy at every scenes between Mare and Maven I read, but it still prickle my heart cuz I know in every breath that in Mare's heart, she hate him. She will never love him as loving his brother.
Stop. Just stop torturing my heart. Stop playing with my feelings. I don't know.. it's like Mare and Maven more get along together in term of their inner personality, but just because she think he is evil so she insists every bit in herself to not feel for him. Damn. It would be very interesting to see them as Silver King & Red Queen together.
That's what all. TALK BOOK WITH ME BELOW PLEASE!
Hello Goodreads, I'm back, already suffering from King's Cage withdrawal syndrome and more heartbroken than I care to admit.
King's Cage was the most powerful, deep and contradictory installment of Red Queen so far. The first half nearly drove me to give it three stars, it was unbearably slow and made me question my decision to continue this series many times. I felt like I was drowning in a swamp, trying to move yet stuck in the same place for so long I lost the concept of time. But in the end it seemed that the countless pages where nothing happened were necessary to understand the characters and set the foundations for the second half, which was undeniably mindblowing, full of epic fight sequences and moments to elate you only to shatter you minutes later.
“We're not a god's chosen, but a god's cursed.”
Mare spends six months imprisoned, tortured, living at the mercy of a wicked boy-king who keeps her in a cage because that is the only way she'll stay with him, who uses her to serve his own ends and each day steals a piece of her and replaces it with hopelessnes and anger, while the Scarlet Guard makes new allies and strives to end his reign of lies. With threats of civil war, rebelling houses claiming power and newbloods who shift the balance between Reds and Silvers, the kingdom of Norta will either be reformed or engulf in flames. For there is only one throne and two Calore sons, divided by betrayal, ambission, and a stubborn lightning girl.
“I am Mare Barrow. Not Mareena, not the lightning girl. Mare.”
Who is Mare Barrow? A self-centered hypocrite. A murderer. A traitor. That's what I would have told you in the beginning of King's Cage. It is no secret that I am not particularly fond of Mare. In fact, a sadictic and rather cruel part of me enjoyed her tortures and her despair, all those moments when she finally felt the weight of her mistakes and rush decisions. Who are you to judge Cal ? I wanted to shout. How can you possibly blame him for not taking a stand after all the horror and injustice he has witnessed when the path you follow is paved with more blood and reverse discriminations in the name of common good? I wanted to peel off my skin every time she claimed she knew Maven so well, Maven of all people, an evil and broken boy who kept up with his atrocities even when his puppeteer was gone, while she never tried to see things from Cal's perspective. I still hate this self-righeous Mare. But thankfully, in King's Cage, she proved that she is more. And she somehow taught me that not a single character in this series is purely evil or purely good, the same way she learned it. I want you to remember this day, folks. The day I admitted that Mare Barrow became a tolerable and relatable heroine. I can't say the same about Maven, though. It is true that he wasn't born a monster, that his madness is the result of his horrible mother, and after his confessions he gained my understandment, but not my sympathy. Some choices were his. The slaughtered babies, the court manipulation, the power games, they were his. What he feels for Mare is not love, just a sick obsession. And I'm looking forward to his downfall.
“Red. Red as blood, red as fire. Red as the anger eating us both alive.”
Tiberias Calore is not the flawless prince I thought he was.
And that revelation was not the result of Victoria Aveyard's efforts to twist his character to make readers love him less, like I believed at first. Don't get me wrong, he's still my favorite character, but I'm afraid I idolised him. The bitter truth is that he is not good at making decisions, like Maven, and Mare and Cameron and everyone else knew from the start. He is noble, and kind, and a great strategist, he loves Mare despite reason in a way that warms you up inside, but he has his weaknesses.
I believe that what Victoria Aveyard tries to say in every sentence and every page is that power is alluring. A siren whose call no one can resist, regardless the colour of their blood, their rank and social status. And once you embrace power, and give in to its seductive touch and whispers of greatness, it taints you. And inevitably you lose something. Your humanity. Your kindness. Your soul. Your ideals. Your loved ones. Some things you can never get back. And I can't help but commend Victoria Aveyard for the way she delivers it. In King's Cage she masterfully delved into her characters' depths, she gave them multiple dimensions and made the reader invested in them, besides the intricate plot with the intrigue, the politics and the battle scenes that were undoubtedly epic. While my loyalties are still the same, I finished it more open-minded. And that's probably the reason the ending hurt me this much. In a way, when I read this series only for the plot was better. My feelings varied from annoyed to angry, and as soon as I finished each book I didn't think about it twice. But this time, it will haunt me. Because it has torn me apart.
“Now I'm in a king's cage. But so is he. My chains are Silent Stone. His is the crown.”
On a brighter note, I cheered for Evangeline (who may or may not have been the biggest and scariest badass), I swooned over shirtless Cal and I experienced a rush of adrenaline each time a fight was described or a new conspiracy was set into motion. If it hadn't been for the first half, King's Cage would deserve all the stars in the sky!
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