Protect the Prince (Crown of Shards, #2)
Magic, murder, adventure, and romance combine in this second novel in the exciting Crown of Shards saga from New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jennifer Estep.Everleigh Blair might be the new gladiator queen of Bellona, but her problems are far from over.First, Evie has to deal with a court full of arrogant, demanding nobles, all of whom want to get their greedy hands on her crown. As if that wasn’t bad enough, an assassin tries to kill Evie in her own throne room.Despite the dangers, Evie goes ahead with a scheduled trip to the neighboring kingdom of Andvari in order to secure a desperately needed alliance. But complicating matters is the stubborn Andvarian king, who wants to punish Evie for the deaths of his countrymen during the Seven Spire massacre.But dark forces are at work inside the Andvarian palace, and Evie soon realizes that no one is safe. Worse, Evie’s immunity to magic starts acting in strange, unexpected ways, which makes her wonder whether she is truly strong enough to be a Winter Queen.But Evie’s magic, life, and crown aren’t the only things in danger—so is her heart, thanks to Lucas Sullivan, the Andvarian king’s bastard son and Evie’s . . . well, Evie isn’t quite sure what Sullivan is to her.Only one thing is certain—protecting a prince might be even harder than killing a queen…

Protect the Prince (Crown of Shards, #2) Details

TitleProtect the Prince (Crown of Shards, #2)
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJul 2nd, 2019
PublisherHarper Voyager
ISBN-139780062797650
Rating
GenreFantasy, Magic, Romance

Protect the Prince (Crown of Shards, #2) Review

  • Beth
    January 1, 1970
    First, I have to say, after I finished PROTECT THE PRINCE, I immediately when back and re-read KILL THE QUEEN and then PROTECT THE PRINCE, again! It was that GOOD!Evie has reluctantly claimed the thrown and now her troubles really begin. Her finely tuned art of political machinations will become her life line of survival. But at least she has the friends she made at the gladiator troupe to have her back.Court intrigue, intense action and everything you’d expect from the incredible story telling First, I have to say, after I finished PROTECT THE PRINCE, I immediately when back and re-read KILL THE QUEEN and then PROTECT THE PRINCE, again! It was that GOOD!Evie has reluctantly claimed the thrown and now her troubles really begin. Her finely tuned art of political machinations will become her life line of survival. But at least she has the friends she made at the gladiator troupe to have her back.Court intrigue, intense action and everything you’d expect from the incredible story telling of Jennifer Estep. PROTECT THE PRINCE has Amazing world building, outrageously imaginative and mind blowing action that had me white knuckle reading. A must read for all Epic Fantasy Lovers.I received this ARC copy of Protect the Prince from Harper Voyager - HarperCollins. This is my honest and voluntary review. Protect the Prince is set for publication July 2, 2019.My Rating: 5 starsWritten by: Jennifer EstepSeries: A Crown of Shards Novel Sequence in Series: Book 2Paperback: 448 pagesPublisher: Harper Voyager Publication Date: July 2, 2019ISBN-10: 0062797646ISBN-13: 978-0062797643Genre: Epic Fantasy | RomanceAmazon: https://www.amazon.com/Protect-Prince...Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/prot...Itunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/prot...
    more
  • Madison Warner Fairbanks
    January 1, 1970
    Protect the Prince by Jennifer Estep2nd in the Crown of Shards series. Fantasy series. Best read after the first Kill the Queen.Everleigh, The heroine is fierce and tender hearted. She is going to do what’s best for her kingdom regardless of the cost to herself. She puts herself on the line several times. Even when her own heart s breaking. Intense and action filled. I can’t wait for the next in the series. Gargoyles: living, breathing stone. Like puppies, they like their bellies rubbed. If they Protect the Prince by Jennifer Estep2nd in the Crown of Shards series. Fantasy series. Best read after the first Kill the Queen.Everleigh, The heroine is fierce and tender hearted. She is going to do what’s best for her kingdom regardless of the cost to herself. She puts herself on the line several times. Even when her own heart s breaking. Intense and action filled. I can’t wait for the next in the series. Gargoyles: living, breathing stone. Like puppies, they like their bellies rubbed. If they like you. But their wagging tails can cause quite a bit of wind damage, so look out!I received a copy of this book at a conference. I also purchased a copy to keep and reread.
    more
  • Astrid - The Bookish Sweet Tooth
    January 1, 1970
    TITLE: PROTECT THE PRINCEAUTHOR: Jennifer EstepSERIES: Crown of Shards #2RELEASE DATE: July 2 2019GENRE: FantasyRATING: 4 STARSCLIFFHANGER: YesREAD MY REVIEW ON THE BLOGAfter KILL THE QUEEN I couldn't wait to see how Evie was going to deal with her new status as the Queen of Bellonan. Here are my thoughts:- Evie had a lot of hangups about people judging her. Her inner monologues, repeating how she thought she didn't deserve being queen, that she was a fraud, a pretender, were a little repetit TITLE: PROTECT THE PRINCEAUTHOR: Jennifer EstepSERIES: Crown of Shards #2RELEASE DATE: July 2 2019GENRE: FantasyRATING: 4 STARSCLIFFHANGER: YesREAD MY REVIEW ON THE BLOGAfter KILL THE QUEEN I couldn't wait to see how Evie was going to deal with her new status as the Queen of Bellonan. Here are my thoughts:- Evie had a lot of hangups about people judging her. Her inner monologues, repeating how she thought she didn't deserve being queen, that she was a fraud, a pretender, were a little repetitive and at some point I couldn't help but roll my eyes.- Ultimately she grew into her new role, though, and I was happy to see pushing back and making smart decisions that were for the good of all, even though they often were hard and hurtful to her and the people she loved and sometimes involved lying to them. While I hope that the lies are a thing in the past, I really doubt it. I didn’t think that it was possible, but my heart somehow sped up and stopped, soared and plummeted, swelled with happiness and cracked apart with grief, all at the same time. - I was hoping for the romance to develop in this installment. It did. At a snail pace. I can't say that this made me happy, especially when the interactions between Evie and Lucas were scarce. However, we get a pretty nice development in the end.- Lucas Sullivan was his hot, magnetic self again. We didn't see as much of him as I would have liked but I think it'll all come together great in the next installment.- The backstabbing, assassination attempts and schemes at court keep the tension high and the reader invested to find out who the perpetrator is. I had a theory pretty much from the beginning but even though I guessed correctly I was glued to the pages when the showdown played out. “I’ll say this for you, Evie. So far, your reign has not been a boring one.” - I talked about this with my bestie and, rarely enough, we disagreed a little: Evie got some serious flak and hate at the Andvarian court for the massacre that happened in her kingdom. She was the person who saved people, she didn't participate in it. She even killed the person responsible. The amount of hate she got from the Andvarian people was mind boggling and I was upset for Evie because I thought it was unjustified.- There was an excessive amount of describing rooms and clothes, which made the story drag a little in parts. At some point I thought "gargoyle" was in every sentence because, apparently, they were everywhere.- Which brings me to the next thing that was a little annoying. We know that Evie can smell emotions. When you keep reading about jalapeno rage, peppery anger, lime truthfulness and rotten deception and it's being repeated ad nauseam, it kinda starts to bug you. I think the author could have chosen to just name the emotion Evie smelled.With all the niggles I had I enjoyed this installment. It had so much depth and heart-stopping situations, the plot well thought out. I missed the whole gladiator feel in this one but it does have a good dose of the Game of Thrones schemes. Final verdict: overall a satisfying second book in this series! “You are my kingdom. You always have been, ever since that first morning I found you sleeping in the corner of my house. You’re all I’ve ever wanted, highness, and you’re all that I need, Evie.”“You’re my kingdom too,” I whispered.
    more
  • Ian
    January 1, 1970
    Every now and then I get a hankering for KFC. Not often.Maybe once in every two or three months. I know I'm going to regret it but the craving needs to be sated. And I always end up feeling ill and swearing that never again will I put myself through that. Jennifer Estep is a bit like that. I struggle with her writing style. The countless repeated adjectives, the self recriminations her characters all go through, the use of dreams to tell a back story. But I've read 20+ of her books and I keep go Every now and then I get a hankering for KFC. Not often.Maybe once in every two or three months. I know I'm going to regret it but the craving needs to be sated. And I always end up feeling ill and swearing that never again will I put myself through that. Jennifer Estep is a bit like that. I struggle with her writing style. The countless repeated adjectives, the self recriminations her characters all go through, the use of dreams to tell a back story. But I've read 20+ of her books and I keep going back for more so I guess she's doing something right. Protect the Prince is entertaining and infuriating and completely what you expect from Jennifer Estep.
    more
  • Lady Heather
    January 1, 1970
    "Pretty, pretty princes,All in a row.Who will they marry?Where will they go?This girl, that girl,Maid, lady, queen.Who snares the princes' heartsremains to be seen."- Andvarian court song"5- What does it mean to be a Winter Queen- Stars""Summer queens are fine and fair, with pretty ribbons and flowers in their hair.Winter queens are cold and hard, with frosted crowns made of icy shards."-Bellonan fairy-tale rhymeThis was such an amazing read!This book was an incredible story of lies, treachery, "Pretty, pretty princes,All in a row.Who will they marry?Where will they go?This girl, that girl,Maid, lady, queen.Who snares the princes' heartsremains to be seen."- Andvarian court song"5- What does it mean to be a Winter Queen- Stars""Summer queens are fine and fair, with pretty ribbons and flowers in their hair.Winter queens are cold and hard, with frosted crowns made of icy shards."-Bellonan fairy-tale rhymeThis was such an amazing read!This book was an incredible story of lies, treachery, deceit, and hidden agendas.There were so many twists and turns and unexpected circumstances and secrets that were wonderfully executed and beautifully revealed.I loved the development of Evie and Sullivan's complicated characters and how much of their past seemed to affect their present decisions. Loved the tension between Evie and Sullivan and the nice twist at the end.They perfectly complimented one another.Great writing!Great story!Great characters!I look forward to reading more books in this series!
    more
  • Cindy ✩☽ Savage Queen ♔
    January 1, 1970
    “Because life can be a cruel, heartless bitch,” Helene snapped. “Because we should hold on to the happiness we have and not worry about what other people think of it, or especially of us. Because caring about someone occasionally means compromising something about yourself for their benefit and not your own. That’s what real love is.”With equal the amount of fantasy, action, and intrigue plus double the romance, angst, and court politics this book builds on upon its predecessor's success making “Because life can be a cruel, heartless bitch,” Helene snapped. “Because we should hold on to the happiness we have and not worry about what other people think of it, or especially of us. Because caring about someone occasionally means compromising something about yourself for their benefit and not your own. That’s what real love is.”With equal the amount of fantasy, action, and intrigue plus double the romance, angst, and court politics this book builds on upon its predecessor's success making it even more exciting read. The Key CastEvie"There is an old saying, one that we are all quite proud of: Bellonans are very good at playing the long game." Evie is a delightful heroine. She went from wallflower, who kept her head down to survive. To a full fledged queen, who is willing to do anything it takes to protect her kingdom. But not at the expense of herself or her values. SullivanPalomaA true ride or die friend.XeniaGemma This young girl is awesome. Dominic's daughter is one of the few people in Andvari who trust Evie without question. She loyal, smart and observant. DominicJust as Sully described him, he truly is the image of Prince Charming. Like Evie he feels bound by duty, and though they do not know each other well he still treats Evie with nothing but respect. Heinrech The RelationshipsSullivan & EvieAn emotional roller-coaster of feels. Evie & PalomaJust two best friends being awesome. Evie & GemmaThe sweetest friendship. Gemma genuinely adores Evie and the feeling mutual. The young girl is so endearing and honest you can't dislike her. Dominic & Evie"Do you tell all the women you meet in libraries how pretty their eyes are?" "Just the ones who refuse to marry me."As far as forced arranged marriages go these two were a treat. We did not get a lot of them, but the parts we did get I enjoyed. Because their fast friendship was delightful and honest. *Detailed review to come*
    more
  • Mei
    January 1, 1970
    Evie is the Winter Queen. Still she must convince the nobles that she is the Winter Queen and that's not easy at all!She was much more free as a gladiator than she's now! She must put to use all the skill she learned while being the illused noblewoman in the same court. And, while she excel there, IMHO, she's not convinced. She still doubts her self-worth! But she fights with wit and sword! And with her imunity to magic!She will discover some very neat thing about her imunity! LOLI loved the mac Evie is the Winter Queen. Still she must convince the nobles that she is the Winter Queen and that's not easy at all!She was much more free as a gladiator than she's now! She must put to use all the skill she learned while being the illused noblewoman in the same court. And, while she excel there, IMHO, she's not convinced. She still doubts her self-worth! But she fights with wit and sword! And with her imunity to magic!She will discover some very neat thing about her imunity! LOLI loved the machinations and word-fights she had here! She's devious, but sometimes her character makes her slip and she over-reacts. But, immediately she realises what she'd said/done and finds a very clever way out of a tight situation! I loved that too!While in the previous book I loved Sullivan, here I wanted to slap him often. Here he was so involved with his pride that he behaved like a 7 years old: you make me cry so now I'll make you cry! He didn't think what it was like for Evie and why she had to to something that seemed wrong towards him. I appreciated when Helen (his ex) told him in his face his faults!!Still he got it at the end and atoned in a very, very nice way! :-)I'm looking forward to the next book and I'm looking forward to make the acquaintance of the king of Morta! And to see what Maeven's story is, what's her third option and how will she end! :)
    more
  • Emma
    January 1, 1970
    I love the continuation of this story and not only because of the gargoyles! Well worth the wait for the second in series. The story really hits its stride, Evie tries to make a treaty with Sullivan’s people while foiling various assassination attempts. I must say I was surprised by events at the end of this book as I anticipated them at the end of the trilogy. Jennifer Estep writes feel good books and I very much enjoyed it.
    more
  • Carole (Carole's Random Life in Books)
    January 1, 1970
    This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.What a wonderful book! I found myself really being swept away by the story and was completely invested in what would happen to this group of characters. I really enjoyed the first book in the series, Kill the Queen, so I was looking forward to this one and hoping that it would be just as good as the first book. I ended up liking this installment even a bit more than the first. This really was a wonderful reading experience.This is th This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.What a wonderful book! I found myself really being swept away by the story and was completely invested in what would happen to this group of characters. I really enjoyed the first book in the series, Kill the Queen, so I was looking forward to this one and hoping that it would be just as good as the first book. I ended up liking this installment even a bit more than the first. This really was a wonderful reading experience.This is the second book in the Crown of Shards series which really should be read in order. The first book is great so you really don't want to miss it anyway. Trust me on this. This book picks up shortly after the events of the first book. Evie is now Queen but that doesn't mean that she is no longer being tested. The nobles at court are not her biggest fans and seem to enjoy making her life difficult. There is also the little issue of the occasional assassination attempts that she has to deal with. Evie knows that she needs to secure a treaty with the nearby kingdom, Andvari. She travels there along with her group of guards and advisors. Part of her group is Sully, who happens to be the bastard prince of Andvari. She doesn't expect or get a warm welcome. Andvari suffered losses during the Bellona massacre and they hold Evie partially responsible. She must find a way to win the king over to get the treaty she needs.We learn a lot of things in this installment. The flashbacks into Evie's past were really enlightening. We also learn a lot about how things were for Sully growing up as an illegitimate prince and always taking a backseat to his legitimate brothers. Evie discovers a lot about herself and her magic over the course of this installment. It was nice to see a different kingdom and I really liked the gargoyles that played a role in the story.I love these characters! Evie is such a strong character. She is tough and willing to make sacrifices when necessary for her kingdom. She is really smart and I enjoyed watching her assert her authority and make necessary political moves. Sully seems to always be there when Evie needs him but he holds himself back just a bit. It was nice to see all of the key characters play a part in this tale. This was an exciting book! There are plenty of action scenes to keep things hopping and the use of magic in this world always seems to keep things interesting. There were several real surprises in this story which I really appreciated. I really liked that there was a bit of romance in the story and I thought that it was really well done.I would highly recommend this book to others. I thought that this was an exciting story, filled with wonderful characters, that was almost impossible to put down. I wasn't sure if this would be a 4 or 5-star rating but the way this book ended really was fantastic and earned the fifth star. I cannot wait to read more of this amazing series!I received a digital review copy of this book from Harper Voyager via Edelweiss.
    more
  • melissafandomworld
    January 1, 1970
    A really awesome sequel. Not As strong as the first book but still really good. * It has more than enough story line development.* The characters were such a joy to read about again and I loved meeting some new characters as well, like Sullivan’s family for example and other people at court in Andvari.* There’s more than enough action and girl-power present* There’s magic everywhere * There’s a court setting with lots of plotting and scheming going on * There’s romance and heartbreak and a lot o A really awesome sequel. Not As strong as the first book but still really good. * It has more than enough story line development.* The characters were such a joy to read about again and I loved meeting some new characters as well, like Sullivan’s family for example and other people at court in Andvari.* There’s more than enough action and girl-power present* There’s magic everywhere * There’s a court setting with lots of plotting and scheming going on * There’s romance and heartbreak and a lot of other feels that goes hand in hand with it all* And then there’s the truly addictive writing...What a joy reading this series has been so far.March 2020 can’t come soon enough. I need Crush the King like NOW!
    more
  • Christie«SHBBblogger»
    January 1, 1970
    Title: Protect the PrinceSeries: Crown of Shards #2Author: Jennifer EstepRelease date: , 2019Cliffhanger: NoGenre:fantasyIn this second installment of the Crown of Shards series, we take off three months after Evie has defeated her murderess cousin Vasilia. As the only Winter Blair left, she's taken her place on the throne and adjusting to her new life. In the previous book we saw her go through a transformation, becoming more confident in her strength and abilities. Training with the Black Swa Title: Protect the PrinceSeries: Crown of Shards #2Author: Jennifer EstepRelease date: , 2019Cliffhanger: NoGenre:fantasyIn this second installment of the Crown of Shards series, we take off three months after Evie has defeated her murderess cousin Vasilia. As the only Winter Blair left, she's taken her place on the throne and adjusting to her new life. In the previous book we saw her go through a transformation, becoming more confident in her strength and abilities. Training with the Black Swan gladiators helped her to physically and mentally prepare for the confrontation of her lifetime. But now that she's suddenly thrust into leading the entire kingdom, she feels inadequate and unprepared for everyone's expectations. How could she ever be what her people needed when they've only ever held her in disregard or disgust? She was nothing to them then, and things haven't changed much now either. No one expects her to last very long, and self-doubt consumes her. This was something that got repeated a bit much for me in the beginning, if I'm being honest. It felt excessive how many times this came up in her internal dialogue and wasn't necessary. There are also a lot of characters in this series, so keeping everyone straight after the gap between books took a bit of time. But once I refreshed my memory, things were moving along faster. Everleigh is surrounded by a great group of friends who have become her advisors and protectors. Most notably, Lucas Sullivan, bastard Prince of Andvari whom she met during her time with the Black Swans. His brother was murdered during the assassination of her family, and the treaty with his people is in tatters. Not only does she need to repair relations between the two kingdoms, she must prove her worth in court, and stave off the Mortans who are still out for blood. The book is divided up into three parts, each with an assassination attempt on her life. There is a long standing vendetta between Andavarians and Mortans, but they are on a mission now more than ever to finish wiping out the Winter Blair line. Evie won't learn until much later why she poses such a threat, but all will be revealed. Heinrich had said that his nobles wanted blood. Well, they weren’t getting mine—or my throne. But I would be more than happy to give them a traitor’s blood.Evie and her entourage make their way to Castle Glitnir, where she will meet with King Heinrich and try to salvage relations that have been so damaged. From the moment she enters the city she's met with distrust and animosity. Even though she was an innocent party to the assassination, emotions are running high. I wasn't entirely sold on the level of hate sent her way, especially since they know she played a part in saving Princess Gemma. But the more I thought about it I could understand prejudice for her family taking hold at a time like that. There's also a lot of two-faced backstabbers in their circles so it makes sense for people to be on their guard with her. I did think that they would have eased up on her completely after she showed everyone a recording of the assassination, but it still took a little more time before fully gaining their trust. Young Princess Gemma was introduced in the previous book, but now we really got to know her in depth. She ended up being a new favorite character for me! Her escape and dangerous journey from Andvari was alluded to, and it only made me want to know more. She stole every scene she was in, and I'm really looking forward to seeing her mature into an adult. There is most definitely a fascinating story waiting to be told with her rare abilities and connection to the Morton boy she communicates with. I really hope she gets a full length book of her own. I also think that Xenia and Paloma have more of a story to tell, which I think we will see in the following book. The implications I saw were certainly intriguing. While Evie is proving herself at Glitnir, she discovers that there is another traitor walking among them. A good portion of the book is meeting the royals and trying to ferret out information that could lead her to who is behind the rage discovered by her "mutt sense." I wondered who would win in the end—or if the currents, people, and agendas that went along with them would suck me under and drown me for good.Her ability to smell deception and other emotions was invaluable to her, as was her secret ability to deflect magic used against her. This is another thing that she isn't fully knowledgable about, and we finally see her learn just how this ties into her being a Winter queen. This has been kept secret and teased from the beginning, so it was great to see her start to understand her identity and importance. I was hoping to see more romance bloom between Sullivan and Evie, and we did see a change in their relationship, but I wish we could have seen more interaction between them. The story was plot driven rather than character driven, so he didn't get a lot of page time in conversation with her. She was forced to drive a wedge between them a couple of times, so that hindered their relationship as well. I couldn't help but feel horrible for poor Sullivan because she pretty brutally used his weakness against him and he was hurt badly in the process. The ending was delightfully, if predictably sweet however. I was really satisfied with how the book leaves off between the two of them. Overall, there was some repetitious internal dialogue and scene setting, but for a second in series, there was a fitting amount of plot progression. Secrets were revealed, and motivations were unearthed, with plenty of magical fights to satisfy the action hungry reader. Evie really stepped up to the plate and proved that she has the wit, strength, and determination to overcome any obstacle put in her path. And believe me, there is a never-ending line of them. Many wish to see her fail, but she is the type of underdog heroine you love to root for. If you loved Kill the Queen, there is just as much to enjoy here, and it's definitely worth the read. I'm looking forward to seeing how this all comes together in Crush the King next year. FOLLOW SMOKIN HOT BOOK BLOG ON:
    more
  • ☕️Kimberly
    January 1, 1970
    Action-packed and romantic Protect the Prince further fleshed out the world as our Queen Everleigh Blair embraced her role and showed the realms what a Winter Queen looks like.Problems begin in Bellona as court politics force Evie to deal with those who question her ability to lead. Assassination attempts, wicked cuts and barbed tongue lashings immediately pulled me in.We then head to Andvarian palace, the birthplace of Lucas Sullivan, the King’s bastard. Evie hopes to form an alliance between t Action-packed and romantic Protect the Prince further fleshed out the world as our Queen Everleigh Blair embraced her role and showed the realms what a Winter Queen looks like.Problems begin in Bellona as court politics force Evie to deal with those who question her ability to lead. Assassination attempts, wicked cuts and barbed tongue lashings immediately pulled me in.We then head to Andvarian palace, the birthplace of Lucas Sullivan, the King’s bastard. Evie hopes to form an alliance between the two kingdoms against Maeve and the Bastards Brigade.We see old characters, learn of Evie’s childhood and of Sullivan’s. Twists, turns, old lovers and more kept me flipping the pages. Estep is a master storyteller, and she spins a tight tapestry.Danger, plots, attacks and more gave way to a maddening pace that was utterly addictive. Strong characters and loyal companions kept me vested and holding my breath.I relished hating the villains and navigating the surprise curve balls thrown our way. Be warned there is romance. But it’s the forbidden kind, with character growth that can be both frustrating and romantic. Evie is such a strong character, and we learned more about her mutt abilities. She is a born leader despite her denials. A strategist who can see the bigger picture and a heroine you will want to root for. Don’t piss her off though because she is a skilled with a sword as she is with her tongue. This review was originally posted at Caffeinated Reviewer
    more
  • Ann (annreads)
    January 1, 1970
    “I was only queen by chance, by accident, but I was queen. It didn’t matter how I had gotten here, only what I did while the crown was on my head. And that would always be protecting Bellona and her people—and fuck Heinrich and anyone else who was stupid enough to doubt me or tried to keep me from doing my duty as queen.”That was actually amazing and such a great sequel! Evie is literally my QUEEN and I cannot get enough of her! Overall, I love where the series is going and I'm super excited for “I was only queen by chance, by accident, but I was queen. It didn’t matter how I had gotten here, only what I did while the crown was on my head. And that would always be protecting Bellona and her people—and fuck Heinrich and anyone else who was stupid enough to doubt me or tried to keep me from doing my duty as queen.”That was actually amazing and such a great sequel! Evie is literally my QUEEN and I cannot get enough of her! Overall, I love where the series is going and I'm super excited for the next book!4.5/5★★★★
    more
  • Geri Reads
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 starsFull review to come!A review copy was furnished by the publisher
  • Adah Udechukwu
    January 1, 1970
    Protect the Prince is a pretty cool novel. I'm sure Book 3 will be nice as well.
  • Mogsy (MMOGC)
    January 1, 1970
    4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2019/07/15/...Last year’s Kill the Queen was my first book I ever read by Jennifer Estep and it had me hooked! I was pleased to be back into this world with Protect the Prince and was looking forward to seeing where she will take the characters and story next. If you haven’t caught up to this point yet, be aware as this review may contain spoilers for the first book.Last time we saw Everleigh “Evie” Blair, she had just saved the kingdom 4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2019/07/15/...Last year’s Kill the Queen was my first book I ever read by Jennifer Estep and it had me hooked! I was pleased to be back into this world with Protect the Prince and was looking forward to seeing where she will take the characters and story next. If you haven’t caught up to this point yet, be aware as this review may contain spoilers for the first book.Last time we saw Everleigh “Evie” Blair, she had just saved the kingdom from a usurper and now finds herself ruling as Bellona’s new queen. But even though she was never meant for the role, Evie isn’t stupid; she has spent her whole life in the halls of the palace, watching and learning the ways of the royal court even as the other nobles went about their lives ignoring her. Now they want her off the throne, but so far Evie has succeeded in holding her own.But apparently Evie has underestimated how badly her enemies want her gone, even going as far as to send an assassin after her. Still, Evie will not be cowed. Despite the increased threat levels, she decides to go ahead with a scheduled diplomatic visit to the neighboring kingdom of Andvari, with whom she hopes to secure a new alliance. But the Andvarian king, still angry and demanding retribution for what happened during the Seven Spire massacre, is a tough nut to crack.Then there’s the situation with Lucas Sullivan. The sexual tension is thicker than ever between them, but they’re unable to act upon it. In spite of everything, he is still a bastard prince, and now that Evie is queen, she will be expected to marry someone approved by the nobility and produce an heir—and that someone is definitely not Sullivan. Evie is forced to make some tough decisions, going against her true desires. Initially concerned about how much romance would feature in this sequel, I was actually relieved to find that it is well balanced with the rest of the story. What I enjoyed most about Kill the Queen was the its crossover appeal, hitting that sweet spot between romance and epic fantasy, and Protect the Prince continues this trend.And yes, while I missed some of the gladiator action from the first book, I think the courtly intrigues and the developing political conflicts in and around Bellona made up for some of the slower pacing. There’s less intensity in the plot, but there’s still a lot going on—poor Evie can’t seem to stay out of trouble, but it’s not always her fault. Between working on figuring out who wants to kill her and trying not to start a diplomatic incident with Andvari, she’s got her work cut out for her. With all these different threads, Protect the Prince still managed to move at a fast clip and ended up being a highly entertaining read.Then there’s the magic! I wanted more detail about the magic system in the first book (which was somewhat light on the world-building) and I got my wish here. We get a closer look at Evie’s particular powers, and I love how she uses them to her advantage against her enemies and the smug nobility who think they can pull the wool over her eyes.Speaking of Evie, I’m also enjoying her character development. She’s strong, independent, and prefers to solve her own problems even if it means turning down help freely given, or it could get her killed. As a protagonist, she’s very likeable and her charisma helps carry the story. I like that she’s no pushover and can stand up for herself even against pretty much the entire court. She has a long memory and remembers who was kind to her, who was cruel, and what everyone’s strengths and weaknesses are—all very good things to know, now that she’s queen.The series so far is still littered with all kinds of fantasy tropes, but surprisingly, I don’t have a problem with it. The truth is, it gives these books a certain kind of charm, and I love being able to kick back with something light and fun. I also have a feeling Estep is working on the bigger picture, building towards something even better. I look forward to reading the next book.
    more
  • T.L. Branson
    January 1, 1970
    A wonderfully captivating story about a girl’s journey to discover herself, her love, and her purpose.Magic, murder, and romance. That’s the tagline set by the publisher for Book 2 of Jennifer Estep’s Crown of Shards series, Protect the Prince, and it is spot on.I was provided an ARC of Protect the Prince by Harper Voyager through Edelweiss. Protect the Prince is set to publish July 2nd, 2019.This book is even better than Kill the Queen, which I adored. Whereas I gave Kill the Queen 4 stars, I a A wonderfully captivating story about a girl’s journey to discover herself, her love, and her purpose.Magic, murder, and romance. That’s the tagline set by the publisher for Book 2 of Jennifer Estep’s Crown of Shards series, Protect the Prince, and it is spot on.I was provided an ARC of Protect the Prince by Harper Voyager through Edelweiss. Protect the Prince is set to publish July 2nd, 2019.This book is even better than Kill the Queen, which I adored. Whereas I gave Kill the Queen 4 stars, I am giving Protect the Prince a full 5 stars.That doesn’t mean it’s without its issues, but I felt them to be so minor, and that the rest of the story overpowered them enough to get it full marks. More on that in just a little bit.Last time, I had some issues with the first book’s cover. This is an epic fantasy after all: my bread and butter.The last cover looked like a bad urban fantasy and medieval fantasy mashup, but here, it’s much more obviously epic. We’ve got a nice cloak, a bloodied sword, even the bodice and boots have the epic appearance despite the skin tight leather pants.I think it would have been nice to see some elements from the books in the cover, though. One of Everleigh’s iconic accessories is here tearstone crown of shards bracelet, which would have been awesome to see pictured here. Or at least make the sword out of tearstone.I don’t know what tearstone looks like and I tend to skip details in books (sorry, if you’ve ever read my books, you know I avoid long, long passages of pointless details for the sake of pointless details), but I imagine it as a bluish, turquoise sort of look.Perhaps that’s just the designer in me thinking too much. Onward and forward!I said the last book was AWESOME with all caps, and I really don’t know what I can say that beats that. AMAZING, STUPENDOUS, OMGIT’SSOFANTASTIC.Protect the Prince is a wonderfully captivating story about a girl’s journey to discover herself, her love, and her purpose all while…protecting the prince.I read the first book in 3 days, and I read this one in the same amount of time. The speed in which I read a book is evidence of it’s addictiveness. On average it takes me a week to read a book, lately, a month. So 3 days is really great.But let’s be super clear here. The first 40% took me 2 days, and then I read the last 60% in a single day because I just could not put the thing down. COULD. NOT. PUT. IT. DOWN.Yes.Protect the Prince pretty much picks up where Book 1 left off, though about 3 months has passed. Everleigh is settling in nicely to being queen, but it is not without it’s challenges. Many people still want her dead and her own people don’t have any confidence in her.In order to score a diplomatic win and regain some confidence, Everleigh sets off for Andvari, the home of her estranged lover, Lucas Sullivan, to strike an alliance against the dreaded Morta who was responsible for the events of Kill the Queen.The majority of Protect the Prince takes place in the royal palace in Andvari, and the title of the book is appropriate and carries multiple meanings throughout depending on the scene.If Kill the Queen’s crowning achievement was it’s character development, Protect the Prince’s is its plot ingenuity.Let me be perfectly blunt. Kill the Queen wasn’t really a surprising book. At all. I spotted the murder weapon before Everleigh, I figured out the love interest immediately, I even saw that twist a mile away, and I knew who was in charge of that castle where Everleigh danced, even the mysterious evil entity wasn’t all that much of a shocker to me.But Protect the Prince had me on the edge of my seat. I was constantly shocked, surprised, and torn in two over the twists and turns this book sent my way.Okay, so maybe I still figured out the single most important twist before Everleigh, I just couldn’t for the life of me figure out why, and that’s what really got me. That was the big shocker.I love a good surprise.And any book that’s capable of surprising me and delivering not one, not two, but constant twist after twist after deliciously satisfying twist is well worth 5 stars in my books.It wasn’t really that the plot had something that I needed to figure out, but rather that Estep constantly changed what I thought was going to happen by going a completely different direction.Instead of a certain character responding with authority, he apologizes. Instead of Everleigh telling another character the truth, she lies to protect him. Even when I thought all was lost until the next book, something that was mentioned in the earliest pages of the book pops up again and surprises me at the very end.I love it! Love it, love it, LOVE IT.My biggest complaint about this book (I can still have a complaint about a book I unequivocally loved, right? I mean nothing is perfect.) is the language.I don’t really like swearing in the books that I read. I’ll deal with it, but I don’t like it.I don’t usually even bring this up when I write reviews, but seriously this bugs me to no end in both Kill the Queen and Protect the Prince. Estep only uses the f-bomb.That’s it. No other swear words. Just the f-bomb. Over, and over, and over, and over again.Why? I don’t know. I get the distinct impression that Estep’s trying to make the book adult instead of YA and that’s the only thing she can think to do to accomplish it. Most of the time it was just plain pointless and tactless and it bothered me to no end. But it obviously didn’t hurt my rating at all.Go buy this book. Really go do it. Both books are absolutely, 100% awesome and you won’t regret the purchase at all.I can’t wait for book 3, Crush the King which is slated for sometime in 2020.
    more
  • Shelley
    January 1, 1970
    *Source* Publisher*Genre* Epic Fantasy*Rating* 4.0*Thoughts*Protect the Prince, by author Jennifer Estep, is the second installment in the authors Crown of Shards series. Gladiator meets Game of Thrones! This book has magic, murder, scheming royals, romance, and a kick-ass heroine fighting to take her rightful place as queen. Protect the Prince picks up where Kill the Queen ended. Featuring returning characters and more murder, magic, and mayhem as Everleigh Blair, Queen of Bellona, struggles wi *Source* Publisher*Genre* Epic Fantasy*Rating* 4.0*Thoughts*Protect the Prince, by author Jennifer Estep, is the second installment in the authors Crown of Shards series. Gladiator meets Game of Thrones! This book has magic, murder, scheming royals, romance, and a kick-ass heroine fighting to take her rightful place as queen. Protect the Prince picks up where Kill the Queen ended. Featuring returning characters and more murder, magic, and mayhem as Everleigh Blair, Queen of Bellona, struggles with ruling a kingdom, securing alliances, and staying alive. *Full Review @ Gizmos Reviews*https://gizmosreviews.blogspot.com/20...
    more
  • ☕️Kimberly
    January 1, 1970
    Excellent. Full RTC
  • Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
    January 1, 1970
    Jennifer Estep has once again blown me away with her ability to create not only a unique world full of magic and wonder and believe-ability but memorable characters that you can't help but love and feel for.A unique epic fantasy that will blow you away, get your heart and blood pumping and your hand eagerly turning the pages because you just can't get enough, fast enough. I loved Kill the Queen and it still remains one of my favorite reads for 2018 but Protect the Prince has by far surpassed tha Jennifer Estep has once again blown me away with her ability to create not only a unique world full of magic and wonder and believe-ability but memorable characters that you can't help but love and feel for.A unique epic fantasy that will blow you away, get your heart and blood pumping and your hand eagerly turning the pages because you just can't get enough, fast enough. I loved Kill the Queen and it still remains one of my favorite reads for 2018 but Protect the Prince has by far surpassed that love and gone straight to one of my most favorite fantasy series of not only 2018 or even of 2019, but of all time. I have loved every page of this story and can't wait for the next book to come out. I haven't been this excited about a fantasy series in I don't know how long. *ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*
    more
  • Christa
    January 1, 1970
    The stories might be grand and romantic, but we both knew that love didn’t always fix things. Sometimes, it just made them worse. Evie has won her crown, but now she has a much harder task - running her kingdom. Sometimes I thought that being queen was like trying to wrangle a pond full of baby ducks that were constantly squawking at, swimming circles around, and trying to drown me, all at the same time. Evie decides to go to Sullivan’s country to make an alliance with the king - Sullivan’ The stories might be grand and romantic, but we both knew that love didn’t always fix things. Sometimes, it just made them worse. Evie has won her crown, but now she has a much harder task - running her kingdom. Sometimes I thought that being queen was like trying to wrangle a pond full of baby ducks that were constantly squawking at, swimming circles around, and trying to drown me, all at the same time. Evie decides to go to Sullivan’s country to make an alliance with the king - Sullivan’s father. She wants them to see the infighting is preventing them from uniting against the true enemy who slaughtered all those people in the first book. I loved Evie and her strength in this book. “Cordelia is dead, Vasilia is dead, and whatever deals they struck with you are dead as well.” I looked from one noble to another. “I am queen now, and I will not be bullied, cowed, or otherwise intimidated or insulted by any of you.” I was interested in seeing what Sullivan’s family was like - he did run from them after all. I was pleasantly surprised at how much I liked his father. Sullivan cleared his throat. “You’ll want me to leave now and never return,” he said in a soft, resigned tone, voicing my thoughts. Everyone looked back and forth between him and the king. Heinrich stared a moment longer, then focused on Sullivan. His face hardened. “You are my son,” he declared in a loud voice. “You will always be my son. I could never love you less. I can only love you more.” My only complaint is it was a little too obvious on who the villain was. I knew it the moment they were introduced. This is a great fantasy series with a wonderful forbidden romance. I love the magic in this world, and I can’t wait for the next book.
    more
  • Amanda
    January 1, 1970
    This series is so good. I feel like it’s really underrated. It really comes together in this book and it’s even better than the first.
  • Melliane
    January 1, 1970
    Mon avis en FrançaisMy English reviewI had really had a great time with the first volume and I was looking forward to discovering what the author would bring to this second one. This was all the more the case as I did not expect the story to go that fast in the first volume.As Queen, Everleigh has to deal with a whole bunch of new problems, and for the moment there are a lot of them! The nobles do not want her, assassination attempts are increasing and Evie has to go to the kingdom of Andvarie t Mon avis en FrançaisMy English reviewI had really had a great time with the first volume and I was looking forward to discovering what the author would bring to this second one. This was all the more the case as I did not expect the story to go that fast in the first volume.As Queen, Everleigh has to deal with a whole bunch of new problems, and for the moment there are a lot of them! The nobles do not want her, assassination attempts are increasing and Evie has to go to the kingdom of Andvarie to try to establish an alliance and save her people. However, this trip holds many surprises for our heroine!I really had a great time with this novel and I was completely carried away by the story. Evie evolves and changes over the course of history, she becomes the queen she must be even if some choices are very difficult. We also see the evolution of her power and what she can do and I found it really fascinating! Besides, I’m curious to see how far all this will go!It was once again a great novel and I found the author’s ideas catchy and the story well paced! I look forward to discovering more once again!
    more
  • Louisa
    January 1, 1970
    Really fantastic book! I did guess one of the really big twists, and I have a suspicion or two about something for Crush the King! So much happens in this book, and it was so awesome! Loved it!
  • Jen (That's What I'm Talking About)
    January 1, 1970
    Protect the Prince is the second book in the Crown of Shards series, and as such, builds directly upon the events of the first title. The story picks up roughly three months after Evie killed the queen and took over as the ruler of Bellona. Growing up in the castle, Evie knows how to play political games, but she’s not going to bow to the pressures of the noble class. She refuses to be kind to those who were cruel to her in the past, no matter their clout. Against the wishes of most, Evie makes Protect the Prince is the second book in the Crown of Shards series, and as such, builds directly upon the events of the first title. The story picks up roughly three months after Evie killed the queen and took over as the ruler of Bellona. Growing up in the castle, Evie knows how to play political games, but she’s not going to bow to the pressures of the noble class. She refuses to be kind to those who were cruel to her in the past, no matter their clout. Against the wishes of most, Evie makes the trip to Andvari in an effort to smooth the waters after her cousin (the previous queen) killed the Andvarian Prince and several other key citizens. She wants to secure an alliance against their mutual enemy, the Mortans. There she runs into more push back than anticipated, as well as a number of assassination attempts. Overall, I found Protect the Prince exciting and entertaining. The character development, especially the progression of Evie’s comfort levels of being queen and understanding her magic, gives the story heart. Over the course of the story, I came to like Evie more and more. She didn’t come across as young as she did in the first book, but definitely still green and uncertain as a new queen should be. She is extremely talented and intuitive (for the most part), and watching her grow into herself was fun. There is plenty of action and excitement over the course of Protect the Prince. The book is split into three parts: one for each assassination attempt on Evie. With each attempt comes knowledge and experience, making Evie better, stronger. While the book begins slowly, the second half more than makes up for it. There are threads that could have been edited out - my assumption is the author is setting the stage for the third book. I also felt the plot around who is the spy was pretty obvious, and Evie should have been a bit more on her game. While this is a fantasy, there is a romantic thread; however, it took me time to buy into Evie’s feelings for Lucas. During the first book and start of this one, I didn’t “feel” their attraction; rather it was told to me as fact and it didn’t do anything for me. However, as the story progressed, I began to believe in the romance and wanted the couple to find a way to be together. In the end, Protect the Prince is solid sophomore story. I liked it more than the first and look forward to finding out what happens between Evie and her fight with Maeven and the Mortans. My Rating: B+ Liked It A LotReview copy provided by EdelweissOriginally posted at That's What I'm Talking About
    more
  • Anne - Books of My Heart
    January 1, 1970
    This review was originally posted on Books of My Heart Review copy was received from Edelweiss. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. I really enjoyed Kill the Queen last year and was very excited to read more. I've had Protect the Prince for a few months and finally read it. I hoped for a romantic background to the action but it was mostly angst. The gist is assassination attempt, political bs, assassination attempt, political frustration, assassination attem This review was originally posted on Books of My Heart Review copy was received from Edelweiss. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. I really enjoyed Kill the Queen last year and was very excited to read more. I've had Protect the Prince for a few months and finally read it. I hoped for a romantic background to the action but it was mostly angst. The gist is assassination attempt, political bs, assassination attempt, political frustration, assassination attempt, political maneuvering, etc.  I LOVE it.I never got bored; the pacing seemed just right. It's a longer than average book, but it was easy to read. I devoured every bit about the world-building, the characters and their magic. I found the past memories helpful to the political situations.As a new queen, Evie has too much happening to solidify her power and protect her people. The nobles are really a greedy, selfish lot. Wow, that hasn't changed in hundreds of years. Thankfully, there are some good people who occasionally get to power.  Evie is also learning a lot about herself and her abilities.  Some of this comes from her memories of childhood and some from vague hints from her support team.I have to say I expected a little more from the support team rather than Evie having to do so much herself. She has some amazing allies but they have limited effect for most of this story. I hope with the new allies formed in this book she has a bit more help.  She is very capable but it has to be exhausting.  Evie didn't trust hardly anyone enough to help her.Let's hope Evie's long game strategy works.  It's unlikely the assassination attempts will stop. I'm in love with Grimley and want more of him!  Gah,  it will be 2020 before we get Crush the King. I highly recommend this action-packed fantasy with magic and personal growth for the characters. Excerpt: I stared up at the queen’s throne sitting on top of the dais. The chair was crafted of jagged pieces of tearstone that had been dug out of Seven Spire and fitted together centuries ago. The throne gleamed with a soft, muted light, shifting from starry gray to midnight-blue and back again, just like the columns did. The changing colors represented the Summer and Winter lines of the Blair royal family, as well as the everlasting strength of the Bellonan people. I had seen the throne many, many times before, but now that it was mine, I found it far more intimidating, especially since the top featured the same crown-of-shards crest that adorned my tunic, bracelet, sword, and dagger. I had never paid any attention to that symbol before the royal massacre, but now, it was everywhere I went. Sometimes, I thought I would have been far happier if I had never seen it at all. I certainly would have been much safer. Summer queens are fine and fair, with pretty ribbons and flowers in their hair. Winter queens are cold and hard, with frosted crowns made of icy shards. The words to the old Bellonan fairy-tale rhyme echoed in my mind, as though all the queens who had come before were whispering them to me over and over again. I listened to the phantom voices a moment longer, then exhaled, slowly climbed up the dais steps, turned around, and sat down on the throne. That was the signal everyone had been waiting for, and all the lords, ladies, senators, guilders, and others strode forward, stopping a few feet away from the bottom of the dais. They split into their usual cliques and began gossiping, while servants handed out sweet cakes, fresh fruits and cheeses, and glasses of blackberry sangria. I looked up at the second-floor balcony. More nobles milled around there, eating, drinking, talking, and watching me, although they were all poorer and thus far less important than the ones on the first floor. I started to drop my gaze when I noticed a man sitting by himself in the top corner of the balcony. He was wearing a long gray coat over a black tunic, and his dark brown hair gleamed under the lights, although a bit of stubble darkened his strong jaw. His handsome features were as blank as mine were, and I couldn’t tell what he was thinking, although his blue eyes burned into mine with fierce intensity. My nostrils flared. Even though he was as far away from me as possible, I could still pick out his scent—cold, clean vanilla with just a hint of spice—above all the others in the room. I drew in another breath, letting his scent sink deep down into my lungs, and trying to ignore the hot spark of desire it ignited inside me. Lucas Sullivan was the magier enforcer of the Black Swan troupe, a bastard prince of Andvari, and my . . . Well, I didn’t know exactly what he was to me. Much more than a friend, but not a lover, despite my pointed advances on that front. But I cared about him more than I wanted to think about, especially now, when I was facing another battle inside my own palace. So I dropped my gaze from his and studied the nobles again. Even though I had been queen for about three months, ever since I had killed Vasilia, the crown princess and my treacherous cousin, this was my first formal court session. Practically every noble from across the kingdom had journeyed here to discuss business and other matters, and it was important that things went well. I doubted they would, though. The nobles weren’t going to like some of the things I had to say. While the nobles chattered and downed their food and drinks, I discreetly drew in a breath, letting the air roll in over my tongue and tasting all the scents in it. The people’s floral perfumes and spicy colognes. The fruity tang of the sangria. The pungent aroma of the blue cheeses that the servants were slicing on the buffet tables along the walls. I opened my mouth to start the session when one final scent assaulted my senses—hot, jalapeño rage so strong that it made my nose burn with its sudden, sharp intensity. Most people scoffed at my mutt magic, but my enhanced sense of smell was quite useful in one regard—it let me sense people’s emotions, and very often their intentions. Garlic guilt, ashy heartbreak, minty regret. I could tell what someone was feeling—and often what they were plotting—just by tasting the scents that swirled around them. I’d had years to hone my mutt magic, so I knew that jalapeño rage meant only one thing. Someone here wanted to kill me. COYER: Read a book with a weapon the cover. PTS: 1.
    more
  • Jessica
    January 1, 1970
    Yes friends, YES! If you're the type of reader who is always wary of the second book in a series, and whether it will be a good follow up, rest assured that Protect The Prince has you covered. After falling madly in love with Evie, Sullivan, and the whole cast of the first book, I was terrified that this second book would fall short of what I hoped for. I desperately wanted more intrigue, more magic, and I was ready for a little more spicy romance. As it turns out, I got all of that and more!As Yes friends, YES! If you're the type of reader who is always wary of the second book in a series, and whether it will be a good follow up, rest assured that Protect The Prince has you covered. After falling madly in love with Evie, Sullivan, and the whole cast of the first book, I was terrified that this second book would fall short of what I hoped for. I desperately wanted more intrigue, more magic, and I was ready for a little more spicy romance. As it turns out, I got all of that and more!As the end of the last book reminds us, someone always wants to kill the queen. So not only does Evie have to navigate her new role as the regent of her country, but she also has to continuously thwart plots to assassinate her. Thank goodness that she's such a badass character! My favorite part of the last story was watching Evie grow from a woman with quiet strength, into someone who could take down a whole army if it would protect those she loved. That's the woman who is presented on these pages, and the one who we see mature even more. Being a queen isn't easy, and Evie learns that the hard way. I loved that Estep didn't let her fall into the role and lose herself but, rather, Evie molds that role to her personality. It was a beautiful thing.Oh, and the intrigue! Most of this book takes place in Andvari, and that is a thing of beauty. If the last installment left you hungry for more of Sullivan and his background, here's your chance to get you fill. I loved learning about him, his place in his home, and his family members. Where the plot could have gone very simply here, as Evie works for treaty with the king, it ended up being a whole vivid tapestry of events. There is poison, there is unrequited love, and there are trysts that will make your eyes wide and your heart beat faster. Since Estep didn't smash romance between Evie and Sullivan into the first book, which I loved, I was actually really ready for some heat between them. It was delivered, my friends. It was delivered, and it was scorchingly hot.It was also so impressive how much world building came about in this book, seemingly without effort. There are no large descriptive paragraphs, or information dumps. Still, magically, the world of Andvari opened up in front of me with all of its lush gardens, ornate rooms, and vast hidden spaces. It got to the point where I was so invested in the nobles, and in castle life in general, that I actually forgot for a moment that poor Evie was still figuring out why she was a "Winter Queen". When that reveal came about it was exciting, and unexpected, and just all kinds of perfect. Everything in this book is so well woven, that it's a joy a read.Look, Kate Daniels has long been my favorite female character but I think that Evie is set to dethrone her if things keep up as they are now. I love her fierceness, her deep love for those around her, and the fact that she's willing to give up everything if it means her people survive. Estep has me hooked. I admit it. Now I'll have to impatiently wait to see what happens next.
    more
  • Sarah
    January 1, 1970
    I liked the first book, but this one actually made me rethink that because the love interest, Sullivan, has no personality and honestly did nothing but give the heroine “intense looks”. And it made me rethink whether the character was developed or memorable from the first book.This whole book felt like a first draft to me. The plot points were good, but how to get there didn’t feel completely thought out. Like the fake engagement, which felt like what the author wanted to happen but just had the I liked the first book, but this one actually made me rethink that because the love interest, Sullivan, has no personality and honestly did nothing but give the heroine “intense looks”. And it made me rethink whether the character was developed or memorable from the first book.This whole book felt like a first draft to me. The plot points were good, but how to get there didn’t feel completely thought out. Like the fake engagement, which felt like what the author wanted to happen but just had the flimsiest excuses from the people in the book to justify it. Including why they had to hide it from Sully, who apparently couldn’t be trusted to act even though everyone else could. And the Evie’s apology, which even though she’d just spent a good chunk of the book justifying why she had to lie to him and hurt him, she suddenly felt bad and said she was so sorry with no revelation or change in reasoning. Which was the same with why she had to hurt him so badly he’d leave her alone with assassins, but 5 minutes later is calling out to him to help with them.And the villain was obvious immediately. You could tell that stirring of the sugar cube was poison without all the heavy handed hints after. But I could have forgiven that predictability if the writing continued to make the book interesting. Instead the dialogue was stilted and it didn’t feel like characters had their one voice. Maeven, her ‘archenemy’ literally said “die, winter queen!” and lines like she was a B movie villain.And I have problems with the whole Morta wanting to kill Winter queens plot line. Why now, why haven’t they killed off Winter queens centuries ago? Why the long wait between when they slaughtered a whole castle to kill Evie’s mom, who obviously was not a winter queen and had other visible magic, and waiting for Evie to grow up to kill any other Blairs? The Mortans have no real motivation or depth, and they’re identified by monogrammed jewellery because no body else could possibly have that.And speaking of predictable, why did Sully wait to the end of the book to climb the cliff instead of when Evie told him that story in the first place? What changed his mind? Because honestly, that tradition that allows someone like a blacksmith to marry a queen was another plot device and opening a mile wide.
    more
  • Tara (Spinatale Reviews)
    January 1, 1970
    I totally binged the first book in the series (Kill the Queen) and this one last weekend. And I absolutely loved both of them.This high fantasy series is a great mix of memorable characters, political intrigue, and great world-building. Plus there are gladiators! I loved how Protect the Prince really stepped up everything, from the stakes to the level of intrigue. And the romance, while not a main part of the plot, was totally swoon-worthy. Just be prepared for a slow burn.The plot was totally a I totally binged the first book in the series (Kill the Queen) and this one last weekend. And I absolutely loved both of them.This high fantasy series is a great mix of memorable characters, political intrigue, and great world-building. Plus there are gladiators! I loved how Protect the Prince really stepped up everything, from the stakes to the level of intrigue. And the romance, while not a main part of the plot, was totally swoon-worthy. Just be prepared for a slow burn.The plot was totally addictive, I didn’t even notice how long these books are. I definitely have a new favorite series, I’m already counting down the days until Crush the King comes out! Although this is an adult fantasy series, there’s also a lot of YA cross-over appeal*Disclaimer: I received this book for free from the publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
    more
  • Debrac2014
    January 1, 1970
    3.5 stars! Good story but the beginning was so slow! The pace picked up once Everleigh arrived at Andvari. Good ending!
Write a review