Review: The Crown of Embers by Rae Carson
The Crown of Embers (Fire and Thorns #2)
by: Rae Carson
Publication Date: Sept. 18, 2012
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: Borrowed from e-Library
Page Count: 410 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 4/5 stars
There are so many things I really enjoyed about this book! First of all, I can't say whether or not I liked it better than the first. I think the first book had more action, whereas this book gave us a lot more insight into the inner workings of the kingdom and how Elisa is handling being a young queen. This second book also has more romance than the first one did. My stomach is STILL fluttering!! :)
We ended Girl of Fire and Thorns with the battle against the Inviernos and the death of Elisa's husband Alejandro, King of Joya d'Arena. Elisa did a lot of growing up in the first novel and she continues to grow in this one. She is having to deal with advisors that question her every decision and whose fear that her being a foreign queen will result in a loss of power. Not to mention, the threat of the Inviernos has not been completely quelled.
Elisa is such an incredible protagonist in this second book. She relies on her friends to help guide her, which is not a bad thing, but later realizes that it is her and her alone who can be Queen. And to do so will require some sacrifice on her part. She is still trying to figure out the power of her Godstone and understand what her destiny is. With her unyielding faith, Elisa makes a dangerous journey in search of answers to discover the true meaning behind her Godstone's power.
As I said earlier, this book has alot more romance than the first. In Girl of Fire and Thorns, we see Elisa experience her first taste of love with Humberto, but here we see a great friendship turn into something more. (Which I LOVE!) Hector is Elisa's Captain of the Guard, as well as one of the people she trusts implicitly. She depends on him for his guidance and honesty to help her make important decisions. The tension between these two- WHEW! It's enough to drive us readers crazy! You guys know by now I have to have a good romance in my books and I was flying through the pages because I craved more scenes between Hector and Elisa. They manage to give you hope, break your heart, give you hope again...
Hector is such a noble character and he will not allow himself to be selfish enough to only be allowed to have Elisa every now and again. (Because OF COURSE just loving each other can't be enough. Elisa has the throne to consider and making an advantageous marriage is what really counts)
"Don't you see, Elisa? I love you the way a drowning man loves air. And it would destroy me to have you just a little."
As for the other side characters, I found myself missing Cosmé terribly in this book. She was such a great character. I did enjoy Mara though and I loved their friendship. Elisa needs a girlfriend her own age to talk to about things she just couldn't go to Ximena for.
Speaking of, I cannot stand Ximena. She annoys and irritates me to NO end. Quit interfering with things you old woman! Gah.
I wouldn't call the ending a cliffhanger, but it does leave you ready and waiting for the final book in the trilogy to see how it all ends. I love Elisa's determination and that she will fight for what she wants. You. Go. Girl!
The Bitter Kingdom, the third and final book, is set to be released at the end of August.