The Crown's Fate

The Crown's Fate

Book - 2017
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Vika struggles with dangers in her new role as the Imperial Enchanter while Pasha faces disputes about his legitimacy and Nikolai considers how far he is willing to go to return to the world.
Publisher: New York, NY : Balzer + Bray, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, [2017]
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9780062422613
Characteristics: 417 pages ; 24 cm
Call Number: Y SKYE, E


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I enjoyed the first book in this duology much more than I did this one, though The Crown's Fate had a few sparkly moments. It just fell flat for me otherwise.

Vika Andreyeva is now royal enchanter after winning the Crown's Game, but life is anything but easy now that she has assumed that title. Pasha's coronation approaches, and Vika finds herself at the mercy of his wishes, as well as his sister, Yuliana's. She can't shake the notion that Nikolai is alive, that he didn't actually perish during the Game - and indeed, he is a shadow of himself, still "alive" in the bench on the summer island. A confluence of events leads to a major conflict of interests when Aizhana convinces her son that he must take Pasha's crown, and the ultimate fate of Russia rests with two princes and the enchanter who has stolen both of their hearts.

Where The Crown's Game was extremely immersive, glittery, and fun, this second book felt stilted and dull. Without the competition to focus on, the events that these characters go through just felt unexciting. Sure, Nikolai seems all dark and badass, embracing his antihero status, but then, stuff just goes so wrong with that ending. It's all wrapped up so easily that it just felt like all of it was for nothing.

Character-wise, I didn't think there was any development here. Pasha, Yuliana, and Vika all stay exactly the same from book one. Nikolai becomes the villain, and his darkness has its moments that made me want to yell YES because I love a good descent into darkness. But of course, it can't last, as any good thing can't, and overall, again: everything just stagnated. There was no development, no change, no nothing for these characters. We are just supposed to remember their journeys from book one and spend 400 pages wrapping them up here I guess.

As I said, in terms of plot, there are not many sparkly moments like there were in the first book. I loved the magic system at play, how Nikolai and Vika played with it and created such interesting things. That basically doesn't happen here. There are a few cool scenes (Vika healing Pasha is one that I remember distinctly) but a lot of others that just felt like I was drudging through to get to a highly unsatisfying, tied-up-with-a-bow, everyone's happy type of ending.

One last note: I don't remember the writing feeling so stilted in book one, but this time, all I could focus on was how stiff and unrealistic the dialogue felt, and how some sentences just didn' I can't put my finger on what exactly made them awkward, whether it was an excessive use of parentheses, dashes, or just strange word choices, but it drew me out of the story.

Overall, The Crown's Game could've easily been an excellent standalone. This one is not really worth your time unless you really loved the world and the characters, and want more of exactly the same without the drama and intrigue of the game itself.

Aug 03, 2019

Much sadder and less fun than the first book

May 30, 2018

Dark, magical, and captivating.

May 20, 2018

Absolutely loved it. 4.5 stars just because the story ended with no chance for sequel. I would recommend this book to everyone, but tell them to read the prequel first. I'm just so sad the series had to end.

Apr 06, 2018

Two bad there are only TWO books....i wish there were,like a billion more books like this.

Mar 26, 2018

I wish the series did not have to end! (tear falls)

kirstd31 Aug 14, 2017

A good story about friendship, love, and magic.

Jul 05, 2017

I really liked how the author set things up in this book. Forever a shipper of Nikolai and Vika, it pained me greatly to read about the conflict between the two. As it just kept building, the irrational part of me that later was satisfied kept hoping for a miracle. Bless this author and her imagination; absolutely phenomenal. Loosely based on a magical spin of Russian history, back in the times of Tsars and Enchanters, The Crown's Fate is a great introduction into the world of Imperial thrones. I would recommend to readers perhaps 13 of over, as the concepts are easy to understand and the plot is rather straightforward.
- @Siri of the Teen Review Board of the Hamilton Public Library

Jun 26, 2017

it was so good, i wish the series didn't have to end

Jun 23, 2017

It's absolutely beautiful. A story of love, friendship and betrayal with magic in Imperial Russia.


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May 20, 2018

blue_dog_31717 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over


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