The Raven King – Nora Sakavic

Release date: 10 July 2013
Goodreads link
Book Depository link (no BD link for this – the only place you can get it is from Amazon)
Rating
4.5 stars

Book 1: The Foxhole Court

The Raven King (All For the Game, #2) blurb:

The Foxes are a fractured mess, but their latest disaster might be the miracle they’ve always needed to come together as a team. The one person standing in their way is Andrew, and the only one who can break through his personal barriers is Neil.

Except Andrew doesn’t give up anything for free and Neil is terrible at trusting anyone but himself. The two don’t have much time to come to terms with their situation before outside forces start tearing them apart. Riko is intent on destroying Neil’s fragile new life, and the Foxes have just become collateral damage.

Neil’s days are numbered, but he’s learning the hard way to go down fighting for what he believes in, and Neil believes in Andrew even if Andrew won’t believe in himself.

It’s funny. Normally when I review books in a series they still feel like distinct books. But at the moment I feel like I’m trying to review a book halfway through. Also, I desperately don’t want to be writing anything because I want to immediately start the next one. These books are ADDICTIVE like nothing I’ve read before.

In my review of The Foxhole Court I said that it was what you would get if you were looking for a contemporary version of Six of Crows, with sport thrown in the mix. Now I’m two books in, I’m not sure that’s entirely true. But it’s also not not true. If the first book is about setting the scene, then this one is definitely about building the relationships within the team, and also figuring out where all the franctures lie. (But Andrew is still Kaz Brekker.)

The Raven King picks up immediately after the events of The Foxhole Court. By immediately, I mean it’s within a week. The team is still reeling from the events that have just transpired, and things seem like a mess. And not even a hot one.

Neil is finally starting to let down his walls – not by much, and not to too many people – but enough. He is also learning about the others, and learning to trust. Again, this isn’t leaps and bounds, but it’s certainly changing him slightly. We learn more about his past, but mostly it’s just details at this stage. He also starts getting a little bit interested in someone (although I’m not sure he’s figured it out yet) and that makes me black, broken heart squeeeee just a smidgen.

We do learn a lot about his teammates’ pasts though. And wow, do some of them have doozies. My heart breaks so much for each of them, but in particular it breaks for Andrew and Kevin. (I mean, I always knew it would, but still!) I couldn’t even comprehend their childhoods – so different, and yet so similar. Broken boys who learned to pick themselves up is one of the most endearing things to me. And even if the only way they learned to deal with it was to turn their emotions off and become a psychopath and drugged by the courts, then I’m kind of ok with that. (Also, Andrew is my baby and I will fight anyone who says otherwise. Except I wouldn’t need to fight them, because Andrew… But you know what I mean.)

Basically what I’m saying is that this series is slowly crushing my soul. I am yet to cry, but I also fear that it won’t be long into The King’s Men before I am shattered. I kind of understand why Sakavic has only written these books. Authors often talk about putting yourself into books to try and write through your demons. That this is a therapeutic way to deal your past. Given the emotional and physical torture these characters either have been through, or are currently going through, I sincerely hope that Sakavic doesn’t need to get anything else off her chest. (Once again, trigger warnings for basically anything you can think of.)

Until next time, happy reading 😊📚

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