“So long as you fight the darkness, you stand in the light.”
Wooooh I have been dying to read this one. The first book was so well written, I couldn’t wait for the second. This is a Sequel in a series of four books (I think?), so this review may spoil things that happened in the first book. I would recommend reading the first book before reading this post.
My Rating: A
Goodreads Synopsis: Elias and Laia are running for their lives. After the events of the Fourth Trial, Martial soldiers hunt the two fugitives as they flee the city of Serra and undertake a perilous journey through the heart of the Empire.
Laia is determined to break into Kauf—the Empire’s most secure and dangerous prison—to save her brother, who is the key to the Scholars’ survival. And Elias is determined to help Laia succeed, even if it means giving up his last chance at freedom.
But dark forces, human and otherworldly, work against Laia and Elias. The pair must fight every step of the way to outsmart their enemies: the bloodthirsty Emperor Marcus, the merciless Commandant, the sadistic Warden of Kauf, and, most heartbreaking of all, Helene—Elias’s former friend and the Empire’s newest Blood Shrike.
Bound to Marcus’s will, Helene faces a torturous mission of her own—one that might destroy her: find the traitor Elias Veturius and the Scholar slave who helped him escape…and kill them both.
My Thoughts: The complexity of these books never fails to amaze me. The world that Tahir has created is so in-depth that I feel as though I could get lost in it completely. Her world-building is just stellar. The characters in this book are equally well-built, each with their own different values and goals. I even feel sympathy for the villains, that’s how well written everyone is. I can’t wait to see where this series goes.
What I Liked: Helene’s battles were definitely my favorite in this one. She gives up everything for an empire that punches her over and over again. She is for sure the definition of honor and duty. It’s honestly so different to see a female character portraying these characteristics. She is the most brutal, but I hope she finds happiness, and peace. I think she should be the Emperor instead, but that’s just me.
What I Disliked: The love square (?) between Elias, Laia,Keenan and Helene bothers me so much. For one, Helene deserves more than that. She had given everything for this boy who doesn’t love her the same way. Second, Laia has like insta-love for everyone, like girl you should be trying to save your brother, not being in love with every male you cross paths with. For those of you that read my posts, you know this is my usual complaint.
Would I recommend it? Yes, read the first one, then read this.
Is this book on your to-read list? Thoughts on the Roman Empire? Which character did you relate to most?