Tag Archives: The Crown’s Game series

Series Spotlight: The Crown’s Game duology by Evelyn Skye

Thursday I’m going to be putting the spotlight on a book series and talking about it. It might be one I’ve read, one I’m reading, or one I haven’t gotten to yet, depending on what I feel like talking about that week. This week’s series is a duology that was magical and dark and had great character dynamics.

the crown's gamethe-crowns-fate

 

The Crown’s Game duology by Evelyn Skye

Review status: 2/2. The Crown’s Game, The Crown’s Fate

All books are released, own in hardcover.

The tone of the two separate books were very different but I still thought they worked. The first book was more of a whimsical dark. The magical battle between Vika and Nikolai was fun, interesting, and I didn’t even mind the love triangle with Pascha. It felt more like they were both fascinated with Vika instead of it being a love triangle. The second book was darker than the first but this time it was more dark magic than whimsical.

Favourite character: Pascha. I think he was a good kid who was thrown into an impossible situation, made some pretty majors mistakes, and got in way over his head. Plus I really like the name Pascha.

Favourite book: The Crown’s Game. I slightly preferred the more whimsical plot of the magical battle of the first book over the brewing war of the second.

Status: Finished.

Author status: Semi auto-buy. Hard to say auto-buy after one duology but there’s definitely potential.

Next up from Evelyn Skye: Circle of Shadows coming out in 2019. It’s ninja inspired!

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Book Review: The Crown’s Fate by Evelyn Skye

the-crowns-fate

The Crown’s Fate

Release date: May 16th 2017

4.5 stars

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.

The Crown’s Game was one of my favourite reads last year and its sequel easily made my most anticipated of this year list. The Crown’s Fate picked up soon where The Crown’s Game left off and threw me right back into the world I’d fallen in love with. This book took all the elements I loved about the first book and added to them. It started off darker than the first and got darker as it went along. The character relationships got more complicated, the battle for the throne felt like it could turn deadly at any moment, and it completely sucked me in.

Vika may have won the game and become the Imperial Enchanter but it was nothing like she expected. Pasha was struggling under the pressure of suddenly becoming tsar and how to protect his kingdom. Nikolai was trying to find his way back to the real world from the shadow world and ended up with a darkness inside him. The new circumstances in each of their lives meant the dynamics between them all had changed and it was really interesting to see how it all played out. The dynamics between these three characters was a huge favourite aspect of the first book so I loved seeing it still so present in the sequel.

As mentioned, this book got a lot darker than the first. There were even more displays of magic, plenty of times I worried about my favourite characters being in danger, a lot more political talk and moves, and plot twists. The pacing was really good, not too fast and revealing new information or twists without getting overwhelming. Between the “needing to know” feeling each chapter gave me and loving the characters so much, I couldn’t put this book down. I wasn’t sure if Evelyn Skye would be able to make me love the sequel more than I did The Crown’s Game, but she did, and I did.

*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Waiting on Wednesday

New WoW

This is a feature started on Breaking the Spine that puts the spotlight on upcoming books.

This week’s pick is:

the-crowns-fate

The Crown’s Fate

Release date: May 16th 2017

Beware, synopsis contains spoilers for the first book.

Goodreads: 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.

Why I’m excited: I loved The Crown’s Game. It was one of my favourite books of 2016 and that ending almost killed me. I need this one now!

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Book Review: The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye

the crown's game

The Crown’s Game

Release date: May 17th 2016

4.5 stars

The Crown’s Game is an ancient dual that showcases magical skill – this time between two teenagers, Vika and Nikolai. Vika, a girl from the small island of Ovchinin, is eager to prove herself and show her skills while Nikolai, an orphan, wants to show he belongs. One will succeed to be the Imperial Enchanter and one will die. Vika and Nikolai never imagined having to compete in such a dual, or that they might have to kill someone in order to become the Enchanter. No one else knows what it’s like to have magic and they find that they’re drawn to each other. Things get complicated when Vika catches the attention of Pasha, Nikolai’s best friend and the heir to the throne. With each round, the stakes get higher and it becomes clear that losing the Crown’s Game is not an option.

This book was high on my list of anticipated releases for 2016 and, going into it, I was worried it wouldn’t live up to expectations since they were quite high. If it lived up to expectations, it might end up being my favourite read of 2016, already. So I’m extremely relieved and happy to say I not only liked it, I loved it.

The book was told in alternating POVs of Vika and Nikolai, which not only worked well with how the crown’s game was set up but also made me care about both of them. They were both good people and had their own reasons for wanting to win. I didn’t want to see either of them die. I got attached to both of them quite quickly and the more I was hoping there would be some way no one would have to die. I liked Vika’s spunky personality and it contrasted nicely with Nikolai’s quiet one. They were both interesting characters, complete opposites, but they worked so well both against each other and together.

Pasha was another interesting character and I was worried, at first, that I might dislike him if he seemed like a third wheel but he was charming and adorable and sucked me right in. I loved his friendship with Nikolai and the fact that he hated being the prince when it meant he was always watched, never free unless he snuck out. I also enjoyed his fascination with Vika. It was written in a way that didn’t make it seem like a love triangle but really, just two friends whose attention had been caught by the same girl and everyone trying to figure out their feelings without hurting anyone.

The Crown’s Game part of the book was so much more than I expected. I loved that it wasn’t just about powerful fighting and attack spells but it really was more of a game. They took turns and the spells weren’t always destructive but showcased their talents. It was still dangerous and either could have died at any time but the fact that it wasn’t an all-out arena-style dual made me enjoy it even more. I couldn’t wait to find out what each of them would do for their next turn, how they would one-up the already impressive series of magical events that was showcased. I also loved how the general public, oblivious to magic, would come up with explanations to what was really behind the magical events – no matter how extreme they could be.

Because it wasn’t a magical fight-to-the-death dual, the pacing was slower than I expected but that just gave me more time to lose myself in the world. It wasn’t slow to read, there was still always something going on, just slower with the action parts than if it had been a bloody dual. I was tense and holding my breath so many times throughout the book even with it being more of a game than a dual so I’m not sure I would have made it through a dual.

I know that this is one book where, once I get the finished copy in hands, all the emotions I felt while reading it will come rushing back and my thoughts will echo what they were when I finished the ARC: I need the next book now!

*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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