The Shadow Queen by CJ Redwine

23299513Lorelai Diederich, crown princess and fugitive at large, has one mission: kill the wicked queen who took both the Ravenspire throne and the life of her father. To do that, Lorelai needs to use the one weapon she and Queen Irina have in common—magic. She’ll have to be stronger, faster, and more powerful than Irina, the most dangerous sorceress Ravenspire has ever seen.

In the neighboring kingdom of Eldr, when Prince Kol’s father and older brother are killed by an invading army of magic-wielding ogres, the second-born prince is suddenly given the responsibility of saving his kingdom. To do that, Kol needs magic—and the only way to get it is to make a deal with the queen of Ravenspire, promise to become her personal huntsman…and bring her Lorelai’s heart. – Goodreads

I really enjoyed this book. I wasn’t IN LOVE with it, but it was a fun, quick read that was very refreshing after being in a reading slump for so long. It definitely made me realize how much I miss the Fantasy genre, that’s for sure.

I have one tiny gripe with the book, and it’s a personal problem…so I’ll get it out of the way and get on to the positive aspects of the book, which are far more numerous. I hated the names. Hated them. They felt made up and forced — Ravenspire, Lorelai Diederich, effing’ Kolvanismir Arsenyevnek…I could not stand the names. Again, tiny gripe.

I loved the characters, names aside. Lorelai was strong and confident and embodied many characteristics that I appreciate in a strong female MC. I also really liked Kol — rather than treating Lorelai like a damsel in distress, they were a team. Irina was a fabulous villain, especially because the POV would occasionally switch to her. The only character who lacked significant development was Leo, Lorelai’s brother…I’m hoping more is coming on him in future installments, because he fell flat for me.

The worldbuilding was great, especially between Ravenspire and Eldr. I could clearly picture the two, the magic system, etc.

There is some romance, but it’s not the primary focus on the story. It’s a little instalove-y, but not enough to turn me off.

In all, this is a great retelling of Snow White — if you enjoy magic, retellings, light romance and strong female leads, check this one out. I rated it a 4/5 on Goodreads.

L

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