King’s Cage – Victoria Aveyard
Release date: 7 February 2017
Rating: ★★★★★ – 5/10
Book Depository link
King’s Cage (Red Queen #3) blurb:
In this breathless third installment to Victoria Aveyard’s bestselling Red Queen series, allegiances are tested on every side. And when the Lightning Girl’s spark is gone, who will light the way for the rebellion?
Mare Barrow is a prisoner, powerless without her lightning, tormented by her lethal mistakes. She lives at the mercy of a boy she once loved, a boy made of lies and betrayal. Now a king, Maven Calore continues weaving his dead mother’s web in an attempt to maintain control over his country—and his prisoner.
As Mare bears the weight of Silent Stone in the palace, her once-ragtag band of newbloods and Reds continue organizing, training, and expanding. They prepare for war, no longer able to linger in the shadows. And Cal, the exiled prince with his own claim on Mare’s heart, will stop at nothing to bring her back.
When blood turns on blood, and ability on ability, there may be no one left to put out the fire—leaving Norta as Mare knows it to burn all the way down.
My goodness, I need this series to end. While I highly praised books one and two, this book really tried my patience. It is definitely a place holder for the next book, and it felt like all the players were being moved around the chessboard in anticipation of something else.
We pick up after the events of Glass Sword – Mare is a prisoner and is in Maven’s control, Cal is moody and determined to rescue her while (still reluctantly) working with the Scarlet Guard, Maven is seriously crazy (but in the sanest way possible), Evangeline is a bitch, Cameron is sulking, and we find out that Farley is pregnant (picked it – this was my prediction). The Barrow family have mourned the loss of Shade, but Sara Skinner has been healing other family members for them, such as Mare’s father and sister.
Aveyard’s writing style changed somewhat for this book. With the main characters separated by events, it became necessary to write different chapters from different perspectives, so we now have not only Mare’s POV, but also Cameron’s, and later in the story a third (no spoilers). Mare and Cameron are too similar in personality for my liking. They’re both petulant, cranky and angry. Despite the growth that Mare’s character has undergone over the last few books, she’s still got that arrogance about her. She literally throws tantrums in this book. And Cameron is really no better: arguing with the Colonel, picking fights, going behind people’s backs – it’s like experiencing Mare from book one all over again. I actually thought that the differing perspectives would open a new kind of point of view (POV) to experience this story from, but their similarities made me dislike it more. I will say that the third POV is the only redeeming factor of this book. Also female, she brings a whole new perspective to her character and I found her very intriguing – I hope she continues in the next book.
There were still plot twists in this, but with all the dreariness it was described with, they didn’t feel as exciting as the other books did. Also, the events that occurred felt the same as it’s two preceding novels, just in a different setting with different fighters – there was nothing impressively new. It really did feel like the pieces were moving into place for the next book. In fact, as it has been a month since I have read this, I can’t even really recall anything exciting that happened (and I read ACOWAR before this and could tell you everything!). This book felt like filler. It was the Ant-Man of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The insulation in a wall. The lettuce in a sandwich. I really was not very impressed with it at all.
Aveyard is a strong writer though, and her story telling, while boring this time, is still well written. In all of this, I must say that I found one line that I absolutely loved. “We slip in like mice and find ourselves in a room crawling with hungry cats.”
All in all, the childishness of the story telling really got to me with this book. It could be that I’ve read better books around it, but really, I think that in itself speaks volumes. This book was really not that great, but still mildly entertaining (like, REALLY mild).