Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Review - Protect the Prince by Jennifer Estep @Jennifer_Estep @HarperVoyagerUS

Protect the Prince by Jennifer Estep
Series: Crown of Shards #2
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Publication Date: July 2, 2019
Date Read: July 3, 2019
Length: 448 pages
Source: Edelweiss
★★★★★
Magic, murder, adventure, and romance combine in this second novel in the exciting Crown of Shards saga from New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jennifer Estep.

Everleigh Blair might be the new gladiator queen of Bellona, but her problems are far from over.

First, Evie has to deal with a court full of arrogant, demanding nobles, all of whom want to get their greedy hands on her crown. As if that wasn’t bad enough, an assassin tries to kill Evie in her own throne room.

Despite the dangers, Evie goes ahead with a scheduled trip to the neighboring kingdom of Andvari in order to secure a desperately needed alliance. But complicating matters is the stubborn Andvarian king, who wants to punish Evie for the deaths of his countrymen during the Seven Spire massacre.

But dark forces are at work inside the Andvarian palace, and Evie soon realizes that no one is safe. Worse, Evie’s immunity to magic starts acting in strange, unexpected ways, which makes her wonder whether she is truly strong enough to be a Winter Queen.

But Evie’s magic, life, and crown aren’t the only things in danger—so is her heart, thanks to Lucas Sullivan, the Andvarian king’s bastard son and Evie’s . . . well, Evie isn’t quite sure what Sullivan is to her.

Only one thing is certain—protecting a prince might be even harder than killing a queen…
My Review

What a wonderful book!  I found myself really being swept away by the story and was completely invested in what would happen to this group of characters.  I really enjoyed the first book in the series, Kill the Queen, so I was looking forward to this one and hoping that it would be just as good as the first book.  I ended up liking this installment even a bit more than the first.  This really was a wonderful reading experience.

This is the second book in the Crown of Shards series which really should be read in order.  The first book is great so you really don't want to miss it anyway.  Trust me on this.  This book picks up shortly after the events of the first book.  Evie is now Queen but that doesn't mean that she is no longer being tested.  The nobles at court are not her biggest fans and seem to enjoy making her life difficult.  There is also the little issue of the occasional assassination attempts that she has to deal with.

Evie knows that she needs to secure a treaty with the nearby kingdom, Andvari.  She travels there along with her group of guards and advisors.  Part of her group is Sully, who happens to be the bastard prince of Andvari.  She doesn't expect or get a warm welcome.  Andvari suffered losses during the Bellona massacre and they hold Evie partially responsible.  She must find a way to win the king over to get the treaty she needs.

We learn a lot of things in this installment.  The flashbacks into Evie's past were really enlightening.  We also learn a lot about how things were for Sully growing up as an illegitimate prince and always taking a backseat to his legitimate brothers.  Evie discovers a lot about herself and her magic over the course of this installment.  It was nice to see a different kingdom and I really liked the gargoyles that played a role in the story.

I love these characters!  Evie is such a strong character.  She is tough and willing to make sacrifices when necessary for her kingdom.  She is really smart and I enjoyed watching her assert her authority and make necessary political moves.  Sully seems to always be there when Evie needs him but he holds himself back just a bit.  It was nice to see all of the key characters play a part in this tale.

This was an exciting book!  There are plenty of action scenes to keep things hopping and the use of magic in this world always seems to keep things interesting.  There were several real surprises in this story which I really appreciated.  I really liked that there was a bit of romance in the story and I thought that it was really well done.

I would highly recommend this book to others.  I thought that this was an exciting story, filled with wonderful characters, that was almost impossible to put down.  I wasn't sure if this would be a 4 or 5-star rating but the way this book ended really was fantastic and earned the fifth star.  I cannot wait to read more of this amazing series!

I received a digital review copy of this book from Harper Voyager via Edelweiss.

The Series
Book #1 - Kill the Queen - My Review
Book #2 - Protect the Prince - Now Available!
About the Author
Jennifer Estep is a New York Times, USA Today, and international bestselling author who prowls the streets of her imagination in search of her next fantasy idea. In addition to Kill the Queen, Jennifer is also the author of the Elemental Assassin, Mythos Academy, Black Blade, and Bigtime series.

9 comments:

  1. Ia m still very curious whether I would like it or not :)

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  2. I won a copy of the first book, but haven't had a chance to read it yet! I've only heard good things about the series, so I plan on reading it soon. It sounds like the story just keeps getting better!

    Lindsi @ Do You Dog-ear? 💬

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  3. oooo liking it more than the first one. sounds good to me
    sherry @ fundinmental

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  4. Oh this does sound good and a bit different from my usual reading. I love when a series is so good you should read the first books anyway!

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  5. Yes! I have this on my kindle. Glad you like it.

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  6. I'm still curious about the series but I'm not sure it is my kind of thing. Great covers though!

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  7. Yes I really enjoyed this also. As you say, I am invested in the characters and the story and it was such fun to read.

    Anne - Books of My Heart

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  8. I'm so glad that I'm seeing so many people are loving this story. I need to grab the audiobook. Wonderful review.

    Melanie @ Hot Listens & Books of My Heart

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  9. I did enjoy the first book -- it didn't stand out for me except in being kind of cosy in how easy it was to slip into! So now I'm kinda wondering whether to read this. Sounds like a yes!

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