Lots of good stuff. Wow, I really liked this book. It is a good book, IDK, but I enjoyed reading it and if that’s worth anything, then that’s what matters.
Customary warning: This is a reminder that these are my personal opinions. My thoughts and feelings are not your thoughts and feelings. I may not always be the target audience for a book; sometimes I am. If I do not like a book, that doesn’t mean you’ll dislike it. If I love a book or simply like a book, you may hate it. Take everything I say with this knowledge. If it sounds interesting to you despite what I’ve said, then go ahead and read it. You’ll only know you like something if you read it yourself.
That being said… Spoilers ahead.
The Raven King by Nora Sakavic
Synopsis From The Book
The Foxes are a fractured mess, but their latest disaster might be the miracle they’ve always needed to come together as a team. The one person standing in their way is Andrew, and the only one who can break through his personal barriers is Neil. Except Andrew doesn’t give up anything for free and Neil is terrible at trusting anyone but himself. The two don’t have much time to come to terms with their situation before outside forces start tearing them apart. Riko is intent on destroying Neil’s fragile new life, and the Foxes have just become collateral damage. Neil’s days are numbered, but he’s learning the hard way to go down fighting for what he believes in, and Neil believes in Andrew even if Andrew won’t believe in himself.
Initial Thoughts Before Reading:
Okay so here we go into book 2 on the same day I read book 1. I am going through this series all too quickly because it pulled me in all the same. A series review is coming, and for that I suppose it can be a good thing but that is where most of my review notes will probably be. Probably.
Initial Thoughts After Reading:
Okay well. Wow. I was not expecting that at the end. Actually I wasn’t expecting this whole book. It is so much drama I can’t even handle what is going on. I love it anyway.
Following the last book, the Foxes have to deal with one of their player’s deaths. They have just enough members to qualify for the sport, but not enough for substitutes. They manage to get it together, coming together as a team after his loss, but not everything is perfect.
As we learn more about all the characters, we are thrown into confrontation between Riko, the enemy who threatens Kevin and Neil, who recognizes Neil. His recognition leaves Kevin understanding who Neil is. Neil snaps back and ultimately ends with it in a fight.
Things seem to be going smoothly when Nicky’s parents call him, Nicky begs Neil to convince Andrew and Aaron to go to the dinner. Neil is able to, so long as Kevin and Neil go for Andrew. It is there that things are going smoothly until Andrew disappears after a conversation with Nicky’s father. Neil reacts, having put pieces together that he has learned the last few months and breaks into a bedroom with Aaron to find Andrew being raped by a person named Drake. Drake had been his foster brother, someone Andrew had wanted to flee from and had wanted to die because. Aaron, Andrew’s twin, kills him.
Aaron is taken to jail, and Andrew is taken to a mental health hospital to help him get off his drugs that he’s addicted to by court order. Aaron is released on bail (and he should get off with self defense. He better). The end of the Fall season party comes and Riko confronts Neil again. It is here that Riko confirms he is the cause of their team mate’s death and setting up what happened to Andrew. Neil throws hands, and Riko tells him that if he wants Andrew safe then Riko will go to him that Christmas break.
Riko does and most of what happens there he doesn’t remember. He was tortured to get into submission for the team but he did not break. When he managed to get himself home, his hair was dyed back to its natural shade and his colored contacts were gone. He had a tattoo on his face mimicing Kevin’s, Riko’s, and another character’s. He was one of them, even if he didn’t sign the contract.
He did it for his new family.
What I Liked:
Characters; We get full development on almost all of the team members from the adults to the kids. Their lives are a worst mess than anything I have seen, and the consequences of that are real. They are real. This means it wasn’t just thrown in there for show. These kids have trauma and that trauma has molded them. Thank. You.
Riko; What a horrible person. I hate him. He needs to die. And his motivations are so well laid out that I understand him. Good.
Finally got more rules on Exy.
How everything progresses, evenly and logically. There are reasons for the way things go.
What I Would Have Liked or Changed:
I have no idea.
Time Taken To Read
No clue. Three hours?
This deserves it.
Notable Quotes: (Based on online version)
“I know it’s not entirely your fault that you are mentally unbalanced and infected with these delusions of grandeur, and I know you’re physically incapable of holding a decent conversation with anyone like every other normal human being can, but I don’t think any of us should have to put up with this much of your bullshit. Pity only gets you so many concessions, and you used yours up about six insults ago. So please, please, just shut the fuck up and leave us alone.” – Neil pg80
“Reap what you sow or burn the field down, the choice is yours. Be smarter next time, would you?” – Andrew pg 173