In less than a year, Kelsea Glynn has grown from an awkward teenager into a powerful monarch and a visionary leader.
And as she has come into her own as the Queen of the Tearling, she has transformed her realm. But in her quest to end corruption and restore justice, she has made many enemies – chief among them the evil and feared Red Queen, who ordered the armies of Mortmesne to march against the Tear and crush them.
To protect her people from such a devastating invasion, Kelsea did the unthinkable – naming the Mace, the trusted head of her personal guards, Regent in her place, she surrendered herself and her magical sapphires to her enemy. But the Mace will not rest until he and his men rescue their sovereign from her prison in Mortmesne.
So, the endgame has begun and the fate of Queen Kelsea – and the Tearling itself – will be revealed…
The flashbacks in this last installment worked a lot better for me than in the second book. I was so interested in Kate an Jonathan, and discovering how we came to the state of the Tearling in Kelsea’s time. The Fetch and Row finally come full circle and we can see how they impacted the present, as well as how they are working for/against Kelsea in respect to their past actions. To be honest I was a little disappointed in the ending between Pen and Kelsea, but again, it made sense for the resolution of the story, and the paths for each character.
In a way the ending of this felt easy, but the way Johansen played out her resolution was done well enough that Kelsea still struggles and still has a lot she must deal with for her future and for the future of the Tearling. I also really enjoyed the way we see Kelsea interact with the Red Queen, and how I found myself almost sympathizing for her, even though she’s been a villain from the beginning. It was a great contrast between Kelsea and who she could have become through the Queen of Spades, and how they were both influenced by the Orphan.
Overall, this was a very satisfying ending to a good series, which I will probably revisit in the future.