Reviews, Wyrd & Wonder

Rule of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo (with spoilers!)

The Demon King. As Fjerda’s massive army prepares to invade, Nikolai Lantsov will summon every bit of his ingenuity and charm—and even the monster within—to win this fight. But a dark threat looms that cannot be defeated by a young king’s gift for the impossible.
The Stormwitch. Zoya Nazyalensky has lost too much to war. She saw her mentor die and her worst enemy resurrected, and she refuses to bury another friend. Now duty demands she embrace her powers to become the weapon her country needs. No matter the cost.
The Queen of Mourning. Deep undercover, Nina Zenik risks discovery and death as she wages war on Fjerda from inside its capital. But her desire for revenge may cost her country its chance at freedom and Nina the chance to heal her grieving heart.

King. General. Spy. Together they must find a way to forge a future in the darkness. Or watch a nation fall.


I just finished reading this and my mind is all over the place. I mostly enjoyed it, but it’s so full of everything that I feel like I need to read it again to get my thoughts together.

Who would have thought, back when I was reading the first Grisha trilogy, that I will one day root for Nikolai and Zoya to finally get together? But root I did, I loved all of their scenes – the confessions, the pining, it just does it for me. I didn’t expect Nikolai to give the crown to Zoya – though he still gets to rule when they inevitably get married so he didn’t exactly give up much. Nikolai has been one of my favorites since he first showed up and I’m glad he kept his wit and charm after everything that happened. Zoya certainly wasn’t a favorite when she first showed up, but I liked her character development, though the way her powers developed in this book was a bit shocking.

Nina and Hanne are some of my favorite characters here and I really looked forward to Nina’s chapters. They gave me plenty of scares too, but it was worth it for that final twist. They’re now ruling the country that hates them, I can’t wait to see how that goes.

I saw some spoilers on twitter when the book first came out, so I knew about the Alina, Mal and the Darkling meeting. I was happy to have them all in the same place again, even though I don’t necessarily agree with some of the choices the writer made regarding this scene. I also liked reading about the crows again and I’m very happy about the ending basically telling us that there will be another crows book, but the reason behind it is not very convincing. I just find it difficult to believe that Zoya would care to help the Darkling. I’d expect Alina to care a little bit more, but that’s just my wishful thinking.

This review proves once again that I can’t actually write a proper review if I don’t take notes while reading. So I should really try doing that in the future.

One book, one idea challenge: it’s not easy picking from a fantasy book, it’s full of things that are, for better or worse, not possible in real life. So I’m gonna pick horse riding, as it’s something that pretty much every character here does at some point, and something that I’m curious about. I know there are schools for this in my city but I’m not sure how they’re working during the pandemic so I don’t know how long this is going to take me, but it will happen.

“Tell me it’s more than war and worry that makes you speak those words. Tell me what they would mean if you weren’t a king and I weren’t a soldier.”

“If you would try, if you would be willing to fail, you would learn. It’s good to do things you’re not good at.”

“Names crowded into his thoughts. Staski. Kiril. Kirigan. Anton. Eryk. An avalanche of memories. He’d been all of them, but who should be become now? He’d had plenty of time to consider such things in the isolation of his glass cell, but now that he was free, truly free to choose, he found that only one name suited. The oldest of them: Aleksander. He had no reason to hide his strangeness anymore. Saints were meant to live forever.”

“Why did you go to her?
Because with her he was human again.”

This is the second review I’m posting for Wyrd & Wonder month. Ugh, I’m so behind.

image by Svetlana Alyuk on 123RF.com

2 thoughts on “Rule of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo (with spoilers!)”

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