Author: Sara B. Larson
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Genre: YA Fantasy Fiction; Romance
Murder, abductions, and forbidden romance abound in this thrilling sequel to Sara B. Larson’s acclaimed YA debut, DEFY.
Alexa remains by the newly crowned King Damian’s side as his guard, ever committed to helping him rebuild Antion and reclaim the hope of Antion’s people, despite continuing to harbor a secret love for him. However, when another threat to Damian and his kingdom emerges, and blame is cast on their newly forged allies from Blevon, Alexa knows things are not what they seem. With the fate of her nation hanging in the balance once again, will Alexa be able to protect her king and uncover the true enemy — before it’s too late?
I should have known not to start a book I’ve been waiting months for at 9 in the evening, as sure enough, I ended up reading through the book til 1:30 in the morning. I could not put it down. Same way I could not let go of the first bookDefy (read my review here) when I read it last year.
Alexa is back. The whole of Antion finally knows the truth, that the best fighter among the former Prince (now KING) Damian’s personal guards is a girl. What they don’t know is that she is still very much in love with the King, as he is with her. But she rejected him for she believes she is not fit to be his Queen, she will never be accepted as his partner and that she is unworthy of his love.
Untrue as these may be, She cannot be swayed. She remains as his most loyal and closest guard and battles herself daily from showing anything that may reveal her real feelings to Damian who is devastated at her rejection.
After a month of peace in Antion, a new danger is brewing. The problem is they don’t know who the real enemy is. Is it Dansii, a country ruled by Damian’s uncle? Or Blevon, the country that helped them defeat the old king and his black sorcerer?
Add to this the mysterious woman from Dansii, Lady Vera, whose beauty alone is a distraction to everyone including the King. Was she sent to attract the King and become his betrothed? Or to destroy him and his Kingdom?
Rylan, Alexa’s closest friend and fellow guard, is still by her side patiently waiting for her to hopefully, give him a chance. But is that even possible when she has already given her whole heart to the man who can never be hers?
Sigh….double sigh……triple sigh…..
Alexa is still sympathetic with fears that are sometimes hard to swallow yet understandable in her world. Still I felt that for a brave person, she had too many ghosts, especially when facing the person she loves the most.
Speaking of which, I love Damian, but I so admire Rylan’s dignity, quiet strength, love and loyalty to Alexa. He is a good man and I dread to think about what may happen to him eventually. What befell him at the end of Ignite choked me with despair. And Jax…. My poor poor boy. He is just a child!
Damian is….. He tries to be strong…. But it is painfully obvious in this book that he gets his strength from one source alone, and without Alexa, he and his kingdom will crumble to bits.
Sara B. Larson is a good writer. She knows how to twist her story in ways that makes me want to hug her and shake her at the same time. It is so frustrating how Alexa keeps what she needs to say, things that are of utmost importance, to herself especially at the end of the book. So intensely maddening.
Strange though that despite all the good points I just mentioned, I still felt slightly detached to this compared to the first book. Could it be lack of sleep? tired eyes? Or wariness of the non-ending end? I don’t know. All I know is that I am still looking forward to reading the third book and finally see if Alexa and Damian will find their forever. My one hope is for Larson NOT to kill off characters I’ve grown to love especially Rylan and Eljin. That’s all.