Be prepared to be blown off your seats
Series: The Winner’s Trilogy
Author: Marie Rutkoski
Publisher: Bloomsbury Children's Books, UK
My ratings: 5 out of 5 stars
Releases: 3rd July, 2014
Kestrel is the town General’s daughter. Brought up in a life of luxury and comfort, now that she is of age she has two choices. Either join the army (as expected from her father) or get married. While she abhors fighting all she wants to do is play her piano. Completely unacceptable in the society Kestrel lives in. One day in the market she happens upon a slave sale where she somehow manages to buy a slave. A Herani who were the native of the land witch Kestrel’s father fought and conquered.
However, Arin is not what he seems. Slowly as Kestrel and Arin get closer, conspiracies and rebellion will tear them apart or will they get closer in spite of them?
I really enjoyed The Winner’s Curse. It’s been a while since a fantastic cover matches the story within. I fell in love with the world building, the characters, the story and the writing. The plot starts slowly but after a few pages I was hooked. I loved how Arin was so much more than met the eyes and I was waiting for him to reveal his true self.
Kestrel was a heroine who can best be described as restrained. It took me a while to really root for her but I enjoyed her perspective on things. She was intelligent and smart. She understood strategy and planning which was refreshing from the usual parade of stupid YA heroines.
Halfway through the story, the plot takes a drastic turn and we learn more about Arin. I haven’t added him to my swoon worthy guys yet but he is such a layered character, torn between loyalty and love. It was heart breaking as both Kestrel and Arin were such similar souls but warring against each other.
The ending has a cliff hanger of sorts. But don’t be put out by it as it was a satisfying ending yet made me anticipate more.
I picked up this book after a friend described it for fans of the Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo and I can see why as there is the good, evil and grey characters right in their own perspective or are they?
Overall, The Winner’s Curse is an addictive, thrilling, nail biting, sit-on-the-edge-of-your-seat ride which grabs you and does not let you go. It sucker punches you with every chapter but you keep asking for more.
ARC provided by Bloomsbury Children’s Books, UK
Paperback releases on the 3rd of July, 2014