Spoiler warning: This is the third and concluding volume in this series. It’s going to be absolutely impossible for me to review this book without spoiling plot from the first and second book. Therefore, if you are not caught up, please skip this review and go start at the beginning – with The Winner’s Curse.
Arin is mustering the Herrani into full-on war with the Valoran empire. Leading the Dacran forces that are going to aid them, is the sarcastic and hideously scarred Prince Roshar. Arin is trying not to think about the last time he saw Kestrel and her choice to marry the son of the Valoran emperor. He needs to harden his heart and become the perfect soldier, to avenge his family and the many Herrani who have died since the Valorans conquered them in his childhood.
Of course, Kestrel is not in fact enjoying a luxurious honeymoon, but being transported to a prison camp in the northern wastes of the empire. Betrayed by her own father, she is taken to a labour camp and fed various drug cocktails to ensure prisoner compliance both night and day. She fights to remember the reasons she risked everything, and desperately tries to stay alert enough to get a chance to escape, but soon, the drugs turn her into a mindless slave, just like the other prisoners.
By the time Arin discovers the truth about Kestrel, the war is fully under way, and it would be madness for him to go haring off to rescue her. Nonetheless he ignores the warnings of Roshar and others and risks everything to get Kestrel to safety, only to discover that she doesn’t know who he is, or why she was in the camp to begin with.
Can the Herrani defeat the might of the Valoran empire and be free once more? Will victory mean that they just get annexed by the powerful Dacran empire instead? Will Kestrel regain her memories, both good and bad – of the love she shared with Arin, but also the way her father revealed her spying to the emperor? Will these plucky YA characters get their happy ending? Will Roshar and Arin the tiger get their own spin-off book? All the questions except the last one will, unsurprisingly, be answered over the course of the story.
Full review here.