book review

The Bitter Kingdom by Rae Carson

GoodreadsThe champion must not waver.
The champion must not fear.
The gate of darkness closes.

Elisa is a fugitive.

Her enemies have stolen the man she loves, and they await her at the gate of darkness. Her country is on the brink of civil war, with her own soldiers ordered to kill her on sight.

Her Royal Majesty, Queen Lucero-Elisa né Riqueza de Vega, bearer of the Godstone, will lead her three loyal companions deep into the enemy’s kingdom, a land of ice and snow and brutal magic, to rescue Hector and win back her throne. Her power grows with every step, and the shocking secrets she will uncover on this, her final journey, could change the course of history.

But that is not all. She has a larger destiny. She must become the champion the world has been waiting for.

Even of those who hate her most.


The Bitter Kingdom was a solid conclusion to this trilogy. Everything was wrapped up neatly and I’m satisfied.

This is broken up into four parts, and there are alternating points of view with Hector. The first half of the book kind of dragged, the second half was nonstop action. I almost felt like too much happened.

The main character Elisa’s character development is seriously outstanding. I can’t get over it. She’s turned into quite the confident, strong, and compassionate young lady, and a great ruler.

My issues with the book (aside from the slow pace at times)? Elisa’s Godstone’s purpose was so anticlimactic and totally random, and I didn’t feel the chemistry with Hector and Elisa like I did in the previous book.

My favourite part was in the cave/mining tunnels. Caves are so cool, but kind of scary with cave-ins, flooding, tight spaces, creepy monsters, etc.

Why doesn’t this trilogy not have more hype!? There’s adventure, romance, friendship, A+ worldbuilding, and character development.

I’d really like to see a spinoff or novella with Storm. Now onto the prequel novellas.


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