Once upon a time a dragon dared to fall in love with the Queen of Hearts.
Zelena Hermosa wants only one thing, to be free. But for a morphling like her freedom will never be possible. Bought by a witch as a baby, she's been raised in a household that knows no kindness or love. She's a broken, dirty child the day she meets her prickly little dragon boy.
Ragoth Nur, heir to the throne of Drakon, has just stolen a golden apple from Zeus's favored orchard. In order to make sure he doesn't have to face the wrath of the gods (but especially his mom) he runs off to wonderland to enjoy his treat and there bumps into the human girl who will change the course of his life forever.
There's so much more to the Queen of Hearts than the stories. So much more than the vindictive woman who shouts, "Off with her head."
This is the true story of the woman, the legend, and the myth.
©2014 Jovee Winters (P)2016 Jovee Winters
We read to know, we are not alone ~ C.S. Lewis
Stars: Overall: 5 Narration: 4 Story: 5
I adore this series, a nice twist and turn mix of fantasy and fairy tale mixed up just for adults. Jovee Winters has taken her unique view on love, ever after and the struggles to get there, deconstructing the wicked queens to show us their softer underbellies. The Queen of Hearts never really wanted her role, as we meet Zelena, raised without love or kindness, the witch who purchased the infant did so only to use the magic buried within her. And from early days, Zelena has been living a half-life, without love or kindness until she meets Ragoth.
Ragoth is heir to the throne of Drakon, and alternately favored or punished by the gods. After stealing an apple from Zeus’ orchard, he runs off with the treat to wonderland, where he meets a very angry, boastful and dirty Zelena. As children are wont to do, the two reveal their secrets in several successive meetings over the years, and form attachments that are based in friendship and some tender feelings of love. But Ragoth is a temperamental boy, and his reluctance to be steered in productive directions often lead to his changing form into a dragon, all the better to rain fire on that which displeases him. But Zelena is not even remotely cowed by his change, or his anger – in fact the two have a rather prickly relationship that is peppered with boastful dismissals and statements.
Years pass and the two become very different people from what their early connection would indicate. Zelena is cold, calculating and more than self-aggrandizing. Taught by example to become the worst version of herself, when widowed Zelena is barely recognizable as the girl Ragoth once knew. But he’s not had an easy time – since claiming her as a child his lack of another mate and pointless existence without one have made him cynical and untrusting – most of all, he wants to punish Zelena for leaving, for changing, and truly for hurting him.
Can these two find a better version of themselves than the ones that send people running in fear? Winters answers that and many other questions in a story that is engaging, enchanting and full of hope and promise.
Narration for this story is provided by Shiromi Arserio who presented the characters with flair, both as adults and children, with the perfect undertone of hurt, angst, flippancy and daring that was required to capture their personalities as the story moved along. Distinct tones and delivery made distinguishing the characters easy, and the variations in tone revealed moments of reflection, bravado or quiet conversation clearly. Not overworking dialogue, she presented the back and forth with flair, and never missed a beat, keeping the story flowing nicely to the end. A solid performance from this new to me narrator.
I received an audiobook copy of the title from the publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
Yes, I love Jovee Winters dark queen series. The passionate queen gives us a chance to see the red queen (zelena) and the circumstance that make her the feared monarch she is
When Zelena and Ragoth start their romance as innocent children
You get to here the characters talk which adds depth and layers to their personalities
Yes and I did I played it while I cleaned up my house and even though I have read the book no less then five times I loved this version just as much
Zelena destined to become the red queen, for she had a magic inside her that would grant who ever married her great and powerful. This is not a life she wanted raised by a cruel witch who only wants her for money she yearns for real love.
Ragoth, dragon warrior of Olympus has grown bored w his life and ventures out and finds his greatest treasure. Upon meeting Zelena in the forest he knows that she is his and will do anything to have her.
With Zelena promised to another with no way to keep her he must let her go only to find her years later a broken dark women. Will their love fr their childhood be enough to bring her back and will Ragoth ever get his treasure.
Jovee winters does it again with another great installment to her dark queen saga.
For sure this story is amazing and the narrator is perfect for the characters.
no I wouldn't compare this book to another. I haven't heard of a another about the Queen of Hearts.
I was able to see the characters better. to see the small things you miss when reading yourself. the rolling of eyes or sighing. It add more attitude to them.
Not just in one sitting, but again.
I'm in LOVE with all this Wonderland and when I heard about this book being about the Queen of Hearts. I had to read it.
Truly amazing. I love this take on her. Plus she finally gets her happily ever after, because of this book I will now be adding Jovee Winters to my list of favorite authors. PLUS I will be reading the other Dark Queen books, everyone needs their other half and Jovee is giving it too us!!!! Thank you My Dear!!!! Keep writing and we will keep reading.
"A beautiful re-imagining for The Queen of Hearts"
It always fascinates me how this author backs herself into a corner with a plot so twisted around itself you think, how on Earth (or rather Kingdom) are we going to get a happy ending now?
But she does it! I do love her alternative versions of traditional fairytales and this story behind the Queen of Hearts was no different.
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