By: Isabel Ibanez
This book has come the closest to a five star rating I’ve ever given a book. It’s honestly a 4.9.
The word is beautifully fleshed out. It’s vibrant, rich and real. The characters all have a life of their own, their own motivations and needs. It’s a well written story set in a gorgeous backdrop. A story about a girl, the decoy of the rightful princess, goes in the princess’ place to be married off to the man who has usurped the throne. He’s a violent man prone to harsh outbursts that leave people injured or worse. He’s a killer through and through.
As she tries to find the weapon he used that helped him overpower the at-the-time ruling class, she lives in a castle surrounded by her enemies. Until, slowly, she realizes maybe they aren’t as different as she once believed. And she has to come to terms with that and what it means for her mission.
A beautiful story with absolutely fantastic on the page character growth. You can see her question everything, struggle to change and when she finally comes out on the other side she’s a better person for it. And it still costs her greatly.
The ending felt a little rush and that’s why I couldn’t give it five stars but the lush Latin background and influence is something I plan on losing myself in during multiple re-readings. The author sprinkles in Spanish that’s easy to understand to someone who’s a beginner at the language and if it’s completely unknowable Google is always there.
I came away smiling, proud of the main character, and with an expanded Spanish vocabulary.