The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black
Exiled to the mortal world, Jude is lured back to the land of Faerie when her twin, Taryn, begs her in a way she can’t refuse. Locke is dead by Taryn’s hand, and she needs Jude to lie for her during the inquest. Yet when Jude returns to Faerie, she finds herself embroiled in the greatest scheme of schemes…the quest to topple Cardan—and herself—from the throne forever.
Well. Now I want pizza.
That’s it. That’s my total of thoughts. Pizza.
Lol just kidding.
“My sweet nemesis, how glad I am that you returned”
While I didn’t see any spoilers before finishing this book, I did read several reviews (okay, a lot of reviews) that said this was disappointing and a rather lackluster finish after the bombastic endings of The Cruel Prince and The Wicked King.
After finishing this book, I wouldn’t say it was lackluster just more…expected. It was the safe way to end the book. And I am mildly disappointed by that, even if I am happy for the ending.
Mild Spoilers To Follow
The entire book went the same way, with none of the bite and promise of the previous installations. That’s not to say that it was bad—I was entertained throughout the entire thing, but Jude’s relationship with Cardan was…weird.
“We have lived in our armor for so long, you and I. And now I am not sure if either of us knows how to remove it.”
Despite these gorgeous words, it was like the hatred and strife and absolutely unhealthy love-hate of before was just brushed aside for feelings and love and you never really knew if Cardan had changed or not. Or why he had changed. Or why Jude accepted him and forgave him or became willing to move on. There was little struggle, if that makes sense. Or not as much struggle as I was expecting.
Cardan put Jude through literal hell throughout their childhood, and Jude practically had turned Cardan into a puppet. I wanted more of that deep-seated anger to seep out and be resolved instead of just going the way of “I wuv you…whoops I said it.”
As to the rest of the plot—yes, the crown was at stake, but once the ruining of the throne happens, everything else becomes expected. Cardan’s high stakes never felt super high, probably because as he was slithering around making a mess of things, Jude was bouncing around, talking to courtiers, not really doing much beyond chit-chatting and wearing pretty dresses. There was none of the bite of the previous books.
My feelings on this one are torn, because I wanted Black to lead me somewhere dangerous instead of the safe path, and also because I wanted all of my precious little babies to make it out okay. And Grima Mog, who is exactly the kind of bloodthirsty monster I wanted (and I wanted more of Fand, because she seemed cool).
And with that I leave with one last thought: