Monday, December 07, 2015

Review: The Winner's Crime by Marie Rutkoski

From Goodreads: The engagement of Lady Kestrel to Valoria’s crown prince means one celebration after another. But to Kestrel it means living in a cage of her own making. As the wedding approaches, she aches to tell Arin the truth about her engagement ... if she could only trust him. Yet can she even trust herself? For - unknown to Arin - Kestrel is becoming a skilled practitioner of deceit: an anonymous spy passing information to Herran, and close to uncovering a shocking secret. As Arin enlists dangerous allies in the struggle to keep his country’s freedom, he can’t fight the suspicion that Kestrel knows more than she shows. In the end, it might not be a dagger in the dark that cuts him open, but the truth. And when that happens, Kestrel and Arin learn just how much their crimes will cost them.

My Rating: 4.5 hearts 

Thoughts on the Novel: Although I didn’t love Marie Rutkoski’s The Winner’s Curse, its ending intrigued me enough that I decided I would give the sequel, The Winner’s Crime, a try. I’m glad I finally got around to reading The Winner’s Crime because it was so much better than The Winner’s Curse! 

A huge reason why I liked The Winner’s Crime more was because the romance was in the background and the focus was on court politics instead. I love when fantasy novels focus on court politics! As well, because the romance was in the background, the tension increased when Kestrel and Arin did interact. 

I liked Kestrel better in this novel too because she really learns to look beyond herself, and makes sacrifices for the greater good. It was a lot of fun seeing her try to outmanoeuvre the emperor, and in the process, appear to gain a friend in Prince Verex.

Arin, on the other hand, was annoying initially because he was so angsty and kept chasing Kestrel when she made it clear that she didn’t want anything to do with him. Thankfully, he redeemed himself later on by focusing on the needs of his people. With the way things ended in The Winner’s Crime, I can’t wait to read The Winner’s Kiss! 

The Winner’s Crime was released in March 2015 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 

Comments About the Cover: I still don’t like the angle of the shot that they chose for the model. I love the focus on the dagger though!


  1. I'm a little nervous to read this one Z because I think the fact that Kestrel wants nothing to do with Arin (for reasons) is going to hurt. I'm waiting until the final book is out so I can binge read everything:) So glad this series is getting better as it goes for you!

  2. Oh good, I'm glad this one played so much better for you! I have yet to start the series of course, but I know I wouldn't have been big on the romance aspects in the first.

  3. I don't read much fantasy, so I loved this series when I first began it. I loved the way this installment moved the story along wonderfully. It didn't feel stagnant. I am SO excited for The Winner's Kiss and to see how this story plays out.

  4. The ending of this book killed me!! I need the next one ASAP. I don't read a lot of fantasy. Usually they require a lot of patience and sometimes it gets too complex and there are various sub-plots and so on. But this series is really great. I agree I liked this one better than the first.

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  6. Ermagherd the feels this book gave me! I liked the political aspects and plot developments too. And that ending!! I need The Winner's Kiss ASAP

  7. I'm glad to hear that the series got better with the second book (I'm with you on court politics!!!) because The Winner's Curse is in my TBR pile for December break.


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