“The Wicked King” by Holly Black

Two Holly Black books in a row, I know. I’m sorry. But lately I have been feeling so disappointed with books and TV that I wanted an author I know is decent. The only problem was it’s been long enough between the two books I’m not 100% what’s happening.

Through reading I did start to remember the events of the first book, so it is easy to pick up the general idea it’s just a few small things that I don’t remember – but nothing super important to the plot.

It picks up 5 months after the first book, with Jude being the secret ruler behind the throne. In the end of the last book she had Cardan (his brothers plotted to overthrow the king and take over and through the sequence of events Jude got Cardan on the throne and agreeing to obey her for a year and a day) on the throne and in her control. The problem is keeping it quiet, keeping a handle on him, and keeping their agreement that her younger Brother, Oak, ends up on the throne after the year is over. One catch – Cardan is starting to enjoy his power. Non-stop parties with no repercussions is very attractive to a teenage boy …even a faerie teenage boy.

On top of standard faerie court things, Orlagh (Queen of the Sea basically) wants to take over the land. If she can’t marry her daughter into it, she will spill blood for it. So Jude has to race to keep Cardan protected (and forget her attraction to him – cause every good YA book has its romance), Oak protected when he is forced to come back to their kingdom (he was safely away in the human world) for Jude’s twin sisters Wedding, keep her adoptive father/her actual parent’s murderer in the dark about her position but to also keep him on her side, and to stop the people that are trying to kill her just because she has Cardan’s ear.

I really like this series, Holly Black is great for grabbing your attention and keeping it. Her books are fun and fast paced, and her main characters are actually decent. Jude isn’t some heroine that the story happens around who always needs to be saved. She is the guiding force of the entire book, everything that happens she has had a hand in, and she can damn well save herself.

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