Tour Host: Rockstar Book Tours
Source: Rockstar Book Tours/Amber Argyle – I received this book in exchange for an honest review.
Publisher: Starling Publishing
Series:Fairy Queens #2
Publication Date:June 23rd, 2015
Edition: eBook, 280 Pages
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks
Nelay never wanted to be queen.
Poised to become the most powerful priestess in Idara, Nelay doesn’t have time to become a pretty bauble for the king. She’s too busy saving her people from the invading army sweeping across her kingdom.
But in defeat after defeat, Nelay begins to realize a bigger power is at play than that wielded by mere mortals. Only she can stand between the cinders of her once-great nation and the vengeance of a goddess.
Summer Queen picks up two decades after the end of Winter Queen, and several years after Of Fire and Ash; centering around Nelay, a priestess of the Summer Goddess. I would say it is much better to read both Winter Queen and Of Fire and Ash before SQ, but it isn’t what I would call vital to your enjoyment and so it could serve as a standalone. However I feel that the pair of the novels (and novella) make for a wonderfully rich storytelling experience.
Nelay has grown quite a bit since the novella, she’s much more sure of herself and far more dangerous. This woman is a badass. She’s independent, smart, and capable of taking care of herself.Where as a lot of characters need development with their inner strength and facing danger, Nelay is the opposite. She slowly learns softness, what it means to love, and how to be truly selfless. However she stays strong minded, no matter what and for that I love and adore her in way I only reserve for my favorite strong female characters. She learns to love, but her heart doesn’t cloud her thinking…it doesn’t shut down those most vital of instincts that she’s honed over the years…if anything she becomes more deadly as she fights to keep what she deems hers. The whole host of characters alongside her is just as wonder and rich as she is, my favorites being Jezzel and Rycus. The banter that they share is just so perfect. I loved the juxtaposition of the two books in this series and what it offers in depth. In Winter Queen we learn about the clansmen, and they seemed like a pretty good people and the people to their south seemed harsh and unfeeling…but Summer Queen flips the tables and we learn that these characters are nearly the same. We see the differences in their ways of thing, their vibrantly and varied personalities, but at the core of it they are human and in that they share more than they know. But it’s not just on a grand scale we see this, we see this with characters in Nelay’s personal circle as well and I appreciated the complexity. And for those of you who have read Winter Queen, yes we do get to see Ilyenna again.
The actual story is beautiful. much like the cover. It’s a story of strength, and it shows that strength can be many things to the same person. The strength to defy rules, to love, to turn away, to help, to say goodbye, to say yes, to sacrifice willingly, to keep fighting in the face of death, etc. etc. However even with the story being so character focused we still get the beautiful world-building I’ve come to love and expect from Argyle. The desert seems so real I could feel the dry heat, I could easily see the abandoned mines and raided villages, and see the windstorms kick up the sand as they move across the land. Summer Queen has a lot of action as well, and towards the last 25% of the book the adrenaline barely takes a break. The life of those in the summer lands is one of harsh survival and strategic games, you fight against nature and you fight against others in order to make sure you maintain and keep your place.
In short, this book was beautiful and I finished it in one sitting. It’s a great series for those out there who enjoy fantasy but don’t feel up to a incredibly world building heavy book. It’s character driven and quickly paced, while still making time to paint a beautiful picture of the world around them. I can not wait for book three to come out!
About Amber Argyle
Amber Argyle is the number-one bestselling author of the Witch Song Series and the Fairy Queen Series. Her books have been nominated for and won awards in addition to being translated into French and Indonesian. Amber graduated cum laude from Utah State University with a degree in English and physical education, a husband, and a two-year old. Since then, she and her husband have added two more children, which they are actively trying to transform from crazy small people into less crazy larger people.
To learn more about Amber, visit her blog at amberargyle.blogspot.com
3 winners will receive the eBook bundle of The Faerie Queen Series. International
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