To say that I went into the bookstore on the day of and got myself a copy and then was sad when they said they didn’t have the white cover only their exclusive cover, and had to figure out when I’d get the original cover… only to try to find it else were, would be to say exactly what I did the day I got the book.
I have yet to get my FairyLoot shipping notice for the exclusive cover, but… we know its coming. Anyway! Onwards! Please note that by the time that I am posting this, the book has been out for less than a week.
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.
Queen of Nothing by Holly Black
Synopsis From The Book
He will be the destruction of the crown and the ruination of the throne
Power is much easier to acquire than it is to hold onto. Jude learned this lesson when she released her control over the wicked king, Cardan, in exchange for immeasurable power.
Now as the exiled mortal Queen of Faerie, Jude is powerless and left reeling from Cardan’s betrayal. She bides her time determined to reclaim everything he took from her. Opportunity arrives in the form of her deceptive twin sister, Taryn, whose mortal life is in peril.
Jude must risk venturing back into the treacherous Faerie Court, and confront her lingering feelings for Cardan, if she wishes to save her sister. But Elfhame is not as she left it. War is brewing. As Jude slips deep within enemy lines she becomes ensnared in the conflict’s bloody politics.
And, when a dormant yet powerful curse is unleashed, panic spreads throughout the land, forcing her to choose between her ambition and her humanity…
Initial Thoughts Before Reading:
I am HYPED. I don’t know what else to say other than I am so excited my hands are actually shaking. I’m SCREAMING. Okay. 305 pages. I can do this without crying. I can. I can.
I think I can.
I know I can.
Let’s do this.
Initial Thoughts After Reading:
I’M STILL SCREAMING. No tears tho. Only happy screams. Only happy screams, indeed.
Swoon all I like. Cheer all I want. It changes nothing that I will be screaming about this book series until the day I die.
The book opens with times when Cardan was a child and the prophecy about him. He will destroy the crown and bring the throne to ruin. Only by spilling his blood, can the true ruler rise.
We pick up where the last book left, Jude in the human world learning to survive. She has taken on doing odd jobs for Fae, since she has no human identity to fall back on. Vivi and Heather are still fighting over what happened in Farie, and Jude is trying to figure out a way to get back.
She takes a job to make Grima Mog, a Fae from the Court of Teeth, to stop killing so many people. She ends up winning in a fight against her (to much blood) and learns that by the next full moon, Madoc plans to usurp Cardan. Upon arriving back at the apartment, Jude runs into Heather and Taryn. Taryn has killed Locke and she wants Jude to take her place at the tribunal to lie and say that Locke died of other causes.
Jude takes the deal and goes. She tries her best to pretend, but Cardan knows it was her. He brings her to the backroom, where it was revealed that he had only set up the exile so that he could finish the peace treaty. He made it so that she could pardon herself and he wrote her letters. Before they can talk more, Jude is kidnapped by Madoc to save Taryn.
At Madoc’s camp, Jude learns of their plans and of Taryn’s relationship with their adoptive father. She finds The Ghost, who betrayed her before, and learns that he did because Locke knew his real name. Locke had been planning to kill Jude when everyone thought he was only playing. Jude swears to save him, and sends a letter to her sisters to save her.
One night she awakens to The Roach and Cardan there to save her. Vivi and Taryn plus another, are waiting to help. Cardan, apparently, went to the human world furious only to discover where she was. They go to save The Ghost but The Roach is shot. Cardan flees with him to save his life and Jude goes to find The Ghost. She instead finds her father who cuts her down.
Vivi, Taryn, and Grima Mog arrive. Grima Mog fights to defend them as Taryn and Vivi help Jude. Jude’s life is saved by the magic in her as Queen, and by the fairy land. Jude hurries off to the castle to save Cardan’s life, figuring The Ghost was sent after him. Waiting for the assassin, she discovers it was a ploy, and she falls from the rafters where the guards try to get her from breaking her exile.
Cardan claims her as queen.
Cardan helps with Jude’s wounds, and when Jude wakes for real she learns of what all has passed. She works to try to be a queen they expect in the short time they have. Cardan and Jude have sex for the first time. He also tells Jude he loves her.
Madoc arrives with his army, threatening Cardan. Cardan thinks about the words, and about his prophecy and breaks the crown effectively ending the enslavement of the High King over all the people. In turn the crown curses Cardan to become a snake.
Jude struggles to keep control, searching for a way to turn him back but the only way to end the curse is with death. She speaks to the snake trying to bring him back unsuccessfully, but is able to get close. Jude is given the option of a bridle, to bind Cardan to her. She considers it and tries to figure what she wants to do. Jude learns that many of the courts believe Cardan their real king, as he had done what no king before him had and trusted them.
Jude goes to bind Cardan, followed by the army, but instead she cuts off the head of the snake. She screams in anguish and war breaks out, but from the body of the snake Cardan arrives. He demands the respect of High King then and there, and the world falls to their knees for he is their true king.
A party is held, Jude admits she does love Cardan fully. They have their formal coronation and Jude sentences the aggressors with mercy. The book ends with Cardan and Jude getting pizza in the human world.
After the Afterward, there are copies of the letters Cardan sent Jude that she never got because his mother burned them. He asks her to come home to him and tells her his heart belongs to her.
What I Liked:
Jude; My Queen. I love you. I will always love you.
Cardan; I adore him. I love him. I despise him. I need him in my life for ever. Please don’t take him away from me. Please.
Tayrn; I believed in you and that belief was not misplaced. I do need to read her novella. I will do that before I write the series review. I do hope she gets happiness (The Ghost is looking her way.)
Vivi; I loved her and her misguided tries at getting Heather to love her.
Madoc; For a villain he was strong and I understood him completely. For that I am happy.
Other characters; Endearing, beautiful.
General plot; I knew this was going to end happily, but to say I knew exactly where it would go… I did not. This did not catch me so off guard as Wicked King did. However what this plot did well, was that it wrapped everything up beautifully. I will get into so much more in the series review, I feel.
What I Would Have Liked or Changed:
For it to have been longer and to get more with Jude and Cardan. I just want them to be happy. I want to read their dialogue forever.
I do feel as if the pacing was a bit fast, but that could have been from how fast I read (buttttt some things did happen within three days).
Time Taken To Read
“By you, I am forever undone.” – pg 203
“It’s you I love. I spent much of my life guarding my heart. I guarded it so well that I could behave as though I didn’t have one at all. Even now, it is a shabby, worm-eaten, and scabrous thing. But it is yours.” – pg 209
“I haven’t worn anything in days. I don’t see why I ought to start now.” – pg 282
“It was yours before I could admit it, and yours it shall ever remain.” – second to last letter, last line.