Emilina Flores, powerless princess of Ruina, has lost everything she holds dear. Her parents were both murdered, her baby sister Olivia kidnapped, and her country torn apart by war. Her lack of Ruined power has lead her enemies to believe she is not a threat, but they couldn’t be more wrong.
Determined to rescue her sister, Em has devised a plan to infiltrate the enemy castle by taking the place of Prince Casimir’s intended bride. She plans to discover where her sister Olivia is being held, and help to ensure an attack against the kingdom of Lera, but if she is discovered, it will mean her execution. Once her plan is put into motion, Em finds herself married to Prince Casimir of Lera, the next in line to the Lera throne, and the son of the man who murdered her mother. The marriage between Prince Casimir and Princess Mary had been arranged by the king of Lera, to ensure that the orphaned princess’s lands became his own. Once Em takes her place and marries Prince Casimir, she finds that he is not anything like his father and over time she grows to care for her husband. What will he do when he discovers that she is not who she says she is and will Prince Casimir help her find her sister and save her people or will she find herself another victim of his vicious father?
Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer.
Em Flores is a well-constructed character, driven by her anger and her love for her sister. She has suffered at the hands of others and has transformed her pain into pure hatred and a desire for revenge.
Her unchecked need for revenge has made her numb to the actions of herself and others in their mission. However, the realization that Prince Casimir is not the evil young man that she had envisioned, opens her mind to the horrors committed on both sides of the war and allow her to truly see who she has become.
The story line is fast paced, combining riveting action, compelling arguments, heartbreaking confessions, and touching, clean, romance.
The passion, hurt, and anger are realistic and come through to the reader, helping them to connect to the characters and their situations. The circumstances and some of the more minor characters come across as two dimensional, however, their involvement with the main characters is limited to a few points of interest and are not completely unrealistic, despite their lack of depth.
The main characters, and the secondary characters, exhibit depth and strength, and growth of character throughout the story. All of the main and secondary characters exhibit growth and have multiple faucets, both good and bad, to their personality.
This was a wonderful read, which I enjoyed and I hope to read the second installment before too much time has elapsed.
I would recommend this book to fans of “The Throne of Glass” by Sarah J. Maas and “The Orphan Queen” by Jodi Meadows.
I borrowed a copy of this book from my local library and have permission from the publishers to use the cover artwork image featured above.
Adult, Young Adult, and Teen Reviews.
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