by Cinda Williams Chima
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
*THIS BOOK IS PART OF A SERIES. IT WILL CONTAIN SPOILERS! YOU'VE BEEN WARNED!*
Han Alister thought he had already lost everyone he loved. But when he finds his friend Rebecca Morley near death in the Spirit Mountains, Han knows that nothing matters more than saving her. The costs of his efforts are steep, but nothing can prepare him for what he soon discovers: the beautiful, mysterious girl he knew as Rebecca is none other than Raisaana’Marianna, heir to the Queendom of the Fells. Han is hurt and betrayed. He knows he has no future with a blueblood. And, as far as he’s concerned, the princess’s family killed his own mother and sister. But if Han is to fulfill his end of an old bargain, he must do everything in his power to see Raisa crowned queen.
Meanwhile, some people will stop at nothing to prevent Raisa from ascending. With each attempt on her life, she wonders how long it will be before her enemies succeed. Her heart tells her that the thief-turned-wizard Han Alister can be trusted. She wants to believe it—he’s saved her life more than once. But with danger coming at her from every direction, Raisa can only rely on her wits and her iron-hard will to survive—and even that might not be enough.
It’s finally time for Raisa to return home.
Now, add in a few assassination attempts, hot guys trying to keep her safe, one crazy guy with family problems trying to marry/kill her, a bunch of other good looking suitors, and magic with a few deaths added in there, and you’ve got The Exiled Queen.
Sounds good, huh? Well that would be because it was! Oh, how I absolutely love this series!
This series is never straightforward. There are always twists and turns and new mysteries popping up everywhere! You think you figured something out then BAM! Something new happens that totally twists your mind! It’s great! Kudos to Mrs. Chima! Not only is she amazing at making all this twists, she is great at creating a new and imaginative world. Between the map and the authors great descriptions, I feel as if the Seven Realms is real! It’s called talent, something which Chima has quite a bit of!
All of the characters grow so much in this series! Raisa is strong, both physically and mentally. She has to learn to navigate her way through politics while still sticking to her beliefs. Something easier said than done. While her feelings for Han grow, so does her heartache, for she knows that they can never be together (or can they? ;) )
Amon is as incredibly sweet and loyal as ever. While he still loves Raisa, the love has turned more into a loving friendship rather than true love. He is just incredibly honorable and amazing and I really hope that he gets a happy ending. He definitely deserves it.
However, move over Amon because here comes Han! In the first book, I was really rooting for Amon but that was before we really got to know Han. *swoon. I can’t even exactly pinpoint why I like him so much. His swagger? His loyalty? His bad boy but actually a good guy attitude? Simply the fact that he’s described as incredibly good lookin? Whatever it is, I absolutely love him! There’s just so much love and emotion in him! I absolutely love him!
So, between the intricate plot, the beautiful world building, and the amazing characters, why did I give it 4.5 instead of 5 stars? There was just a bit of the plot that bugged me although I’m not quite sure why. The first two books focused a lot on the Bayar’s takeover of the Queendom and I kind of expected to learn at least a bit more about it (I forgot there was another book so this may be the reason. I was expecting it to end). However, within this plot, a new plot was added. But it wasn’t a small one like the different stories of Han and Raisa coming together. This is a completely new turn that focuses on a war coming. So, now in this last book, we’ll have two major plots going on, the war and the Bayar’s. While this will be amazing and I really look forward to it, for some odd reason it bugged me. As I wrote down earlier, I forgot that there was another book so I was expecting to have some closure, but instead I got more questions. While I enjoyed that, I at least wanted one answer. But instead of getting any answers, I just got more questions. And for some reason, in the back of my mind, that bugged me. However, please please please don’t let it turn you off. This series is amazing! I will beg you to read it. That’s how great it is!
Mrs. Chima does not disappoint. This series is absolutely terrific. I’m constantly looking forward to diving into this world over and over again. Between the constant twists and turns, action, political intrigue, and love between these characters, this series is a must read.