Queen of the Conquered
Author: Kacen Callender Genre: Fantasy Publisher: Orbit Books
**I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review**
- The writing itself. I couldn’t get over how beautifully this was written. It has a lyricalness about it that was captivating and a stark contrast to the often brutal, intense and heart wrenching topics this book depicted.
- The complexity of emotion. This is a very complex book in terms of subject matter and shows a complex character in Sigourney and her position within the kongelig, yet coming from slave origins and being the only Black member of the white kongelig. My heart continually broke under the waves of hated that Sigourney felt and how this was detailed, especially as I could both empathize her position AND see why slaves hated her (fuck the kongelig, though).
- The mystery elements. In the latter half of the book, there were elements of mystery that I really enjoyed and sorta wish I could have seen throughout the entire book!
- Sigourney’s kraft. I thought this was not only an amazing magic system in the kraft, but Sigourney’s kraft, in particular, was really fascinating. And I thought the way Callender wrote about Sigourney’s insight into others by taking over or invading their mind was masterful.
- The ending. I was floored.
Perhaps I’m an idiot, but I absolutely did not pick up any of those pieces that were revealed at the end, which made the ending that much more impactful for me, and made my interest in the sequel increase.
- The pacing. I think the reason that this book took me almost a month to read was that felt, to me, a very slow paced book. I felt akin to Marieke in just wanting Sigourney to do something and, in some ways, I felt some of the information was repetitive, which made it read slow.
I enjoyed this book (and definitely still plan to read the sequel), but I didn’t completely fall in love with it, despite finding much more that I enjoyed in this book than what I didn’t.