Russia is on the brink of great change. Pasha’s coronation approaches, and Vika is now the Imperial Enchanter, but the role she once coveted may be more difficult—and dangerous—than she ever expected.
Pasha is grappling with his own problems—his legitimacy is in doubt, the girl he loves loathes him, and he believes his best friend is dead. When a challenger to the throne emerges—and with the magic in Russia growing rapidly—Pasha must do whatever it takes to keep his position and protect his kingdom.
For Nikolai, the ending of the Crown’s Game stung deeply. Although he just managed to escape death, Nikolai remains alone, a shadow hidden in a not-quite-real world of his own creation. But when he’s given a second chance at life—tied to a dark price—Nikolai must decide just how far he’s willing to go to return to the world.
With revolution on the rise, dangerous new magic rearing up, and a tsardom up for the taking, Vika, Nikolai, and Pasha must fight—or face the destruction of not only their world but also themselves.
I’m just now realizing that this is my first time reading the summary of the book. I was so intent on just checking it out and devouring it that I didn’t even stop to see what it was about; honestly, it was kind of fun keeping it a surprise!
There is a lot going on in The Crown’s Fate. My beloved Nikolai is struggling with the betrayal at the end of The Crown’s Game and how to get back to reality. He makes some stupid decisions along the way that quickly lead him down a dark path. Pasha is learning what it takes to become tsar while struggling with his own feelings toward Vika and Nikolai. Vika, as always, is stuck in the middle of Pasha and Nikolai, trying to keep them from hurting each other and trying to help them make their- and her own- destiny.
My love for these three characters hasn’t dies since reading The Crown’s Game. Vika, Nikolai, and Pasha each go through so many changes in The Crown’s Fate. They were dealing with a lot more big-picture problems in this book that forced them to make some very tough decisions. I really enjoyed seeing them work through these conflicts and shake things up a bit.
I really like the plot of The Crown’s Fate. We get to see the Russian revolution from a different, more fantastical viewpoint. Our three main characters have an even more complex relationship than they did in The Crown’s Game which definitely brings along some interesting situations and conflicts. However…
I didn’t feel like the stakes were as high as they could have been. I know they were meant to be, but I was never really worried for the characters or how the book would end. In fact, the ending felt pretty anticlimactic and like the characters moved on from the big event very quickly. Really, the pacing felt a bit off throughout the whole book. Certain elements felt slow and repetitive while others zoomed past. Looking back on it, I think the book would have benefitted from some pacing revisions. The imagery also didn’t feel as bold and real as it did in book one, maybe because there was less imaginative enchanting happening.
Despite these flaws, I really did enjoy most of the scenes, the character development, the tone, and the magic elements of the book. I think it was a very solid way to end the duology. The Crown’s Fate focuses a lot more on the political conflicts rather than the magical ones, so that might be why I was a little less in love with it than The Crown’s Game.
I would go into specifics but I don’t want to spoil anything. Just know that by the end of this duology I’m ready to read whatever else the author writes! She is really good at blending history and culture, fantasy, and high-stakes plots together into one cohesive and meaningful story, and I can only see this improving as she continues to write. I would definitely recommend giving The Crown’s Game duology a read!