Princess Winter is admired by the Lunar people for her grace and kindness, and despite the scars that mar her face, her beauty is said to be even more breathtaking than that of her stepmother, Queen Levana.
Winter despises her stepmother, and knows Levana won’t approve of her feelings for her childhood friend—the handsome palace guard, Jacin. But Winter isn’t as weak as Levana believes her to be and she’s been undermining her stepmother’s wishes for years. Together with the cyborg mechanic, Cinder, and her allies, Winter might even have the power to launch a revolution and win a war that’s been raging for far too long.
Can Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and Winter defeat Levana and find their happily ever afters?
Ack. While I was so looking forward to this final instalment, it was unfortunately a case of bigger isn’t always better. I just felt like the story dragged on and on for far too long, which meant that I ended up losing interest. Maybe I should have paced myself, instead of reading it all in two sessions, but it became a repetitive game of hide-and-seek-and-reunite-and-lose-team-members.
That being said, I adored encountering our favourite characters one last time. Cinder, Kai, Scarlet, Wolf, Cress, Thorne, Jacin, Winter – not to forget Iko, of course, who really had some scene-stealing moments of her own. The author’s strengths really lie in the depictions of couples, and friendships, and loyalty. The banter, as usual, was top-notch, and I really had to smile at some of the scenes between the group.
“She shot me in the arm once.”
This confession was said with as much tenderness as if Scarlet had given him a bouquet of wildflowers rather than a bullet wound.
I love the gender dynamics of this series – how Kai is ultimately the damsel in distress that needs to be rescued. I also enjoyed the different depictions of female strength – from Cinder and Scarlet’s physical ass-kicking to Cress’s genius and Winter’s compassion and kindness.
They were filthy. They were bloody. Winter was a well-loved princess who was prettier than a bouquet of roses and crazier than a headless chicken. Fitting in would be a miracle.
I do feel it would be remiss to mention that there’s no particular sensitivity when referring to what could be considered Winter’s mental illness – with the word ‘crazy’ being thrown around an awful lot.
“Don’t leave, and try not to do anything crazy.
Winter winked. “I shall be a vestibule of unhampered sanity.”
Also, without going into spoilers, I really wasn’t feeling Cinder’s plan once they reached Luna either. Waiting around for inspiration to strike in a hostile territory and putting others in danger isn’t such a smart move.
Cinder squinted. “I passed out from stress? That’s it?”
“I believe the princess term is fainted,” said Thorne.
Overall though, I was fairly content with the way things wrapped up. Like I mentioned, the teamwork, friendships and loyalties were what really cemented this series for me.