Friends, I feel like I’ve been waiting FOREVER for Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore. I had all these expectations built up in my mind. Partly because I love Fire and Graceling so much, I expected that same all consuming love for Bitterblue. While Bitterblue was a good read, it’s not exactly up to par with the standards set by Graceling and Fire.
After Leck’s reign of terror, it seems as though Monsea is waking up from a long spell. Bitterblue, the queen, has so much on her plate – from figuring out the secrets of what Leck did to making reparations and oh, yeah SERVING ON A REBELLIOUS COUNCIL with Katsa and Po. In order to better understand her people, Bitterblue sneaks out to storehouses at night where she comes across Teddy and Saf — striking a friendship with the two. Y’all Kristin Cashore’s book is definitely more politically oriented as opposed to the previous two action oriented books.
Honestly, I felt like the characterization in Bitterblue was all over the place. Bitterblue, herself, was drawn quite well, with strength and vulnerability. I thought it was fascinating to read about her unraveling of a painful past. And I was invested in her relationships. Her advisors, on the other hand, who play a pretty large role basically annoy me, because we read SO MUCH about them and there’s a lot of build up to finding out the bad things they did, that eventually I sort of lost interest and just wanted the book to get to the point already. I did really like the characters of Teddy and Saf, who I mentioned earlier, but felt like we didn’t get very much of either.
What I did LOVE about Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore was the culmination of the previous two books and seeing how Fire and the Dells connected with Katsa, Po, Bitterblue and the Seven Kingdoms. I may have fist pumped a little to see my old favorites come back. And honestly, the connections, to me, never really felt awkward or out of place. I thought Cashore did a fine job bridging the three books.
However, what prevented me from loving Bitterblue with the fire of a thousand suns was the romance. And I am PROBS missing the point, I get that, since these books aren’t about the romance mainly. BUT there’s all this tension, all this build up, this INVESTMENT – and for what? You guys there is definitely not a huge pay out. I felt lead on at the end of Bitterblue, lead to believe the romance would culminate into something more. And I am being purposefully vague, but it was a huge let down.
Straight up, it sucks not to fall head over heels in love with a hugely anticipated book and to just be in LIKE with it. Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore is not the stellar conclusion I wanted, unfortunately. The politics and the characterization of Queen Bitterblue are fabulous, but overall, I found the book wanting.
Disclosure: Received for review.
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