Might seem strange, but this book is actually more sexually graphic than the Succubus series. (Not that this takes away from the story at all - it's a..Show More »ctually pretty decent sex, where Eugenie is an active and eager participant... and it's one of the few I've read that actively use and encourage safer sex. Thank you Ms. Mead. ) So if you don't like plentiful and descriptive sex, I'd skip this book.
I liked the first half of the book better than the second half. And the final scenes were my least favorite of them all... it was like the author wanted to explore some spiritual or philosophical topics and the only way she could add them into the story is to tack on a "voyage" near the end of the book. It wasn't exactly out of place (because Eugenie does talk of the underworld in other parts of the book), but it was so clearly an "add-on" to make a philosophical point that I really just wanted to skip this part.
Otherwise, I like the main character (her unpleasant name not-withstanding) and how she grew throughout the story. I'm not sure I like her choice in relationships, but I suppose that's part of the angst of the story. I will read more in the series because I think the characters are interesting and well-developed, even if I don't like them very much.
The narrator is very good and her voices are distinct and her men sound reasonable. Though I have to say I don't think she had the right voice for what I expected Eugenie to sound like. The violence isn't graphic, there is a lot of detailed sex, and I don't think there was any swearing. The Succubus series by the same author is actually a good choice if you like this kind of story (with a lot less sex) and it's wonderfully narrated.
This is a typical Richelle Mead book. Meaning, it’s fantastic. If you’re not familiar with the author’s writing (Georgina Kincaid or Vampire Academy..Show More » series) then, to put it simply, the writing is dynamic and sexy. The characters’ motivations, loyalties, and appeal to the reader change from chapter-to-chapter but in a way that’s believable and credible to each character. For example, Eugenie in Storm Born hates the fae, kills them liberally, and is disgusted by non-human men and at the end of Storm Born, her feeling about her own heritage can best be described as self-loathing and fear. In Thorn Queen, these feelings shift. Richelle Mead delves into what it means to be human – the good, the bad, and the ugly. She also discovers what it means to rule, to be responsible for others, and how far she's willing to go to protect them. As always, the sex scenes are phenomenal. Between kinky bondage sex with Dorian and the rough, passionate instinct-driven sex with Kiyo, I enjoyed the emotion that came along with it. It causes a good deal of tension and drama. Here we really see Eugenie’s jealousy of Maiwenn, Kiyo’s ex-girlfriend and another fae queen, whose pregnancy has brought Kiyo so much joy and the insecurity this causes to Eugenie who knows she can never risk getting pregnant because of the prophecy.
Jennifer Van Dyck, who also narrates Rachel Vincent’s Shifters series, has a no-nonsense tone, that works well since Eugenie’s character is supposed to be tough, butt-kicking and over-all intimidating. Her voice for Dorian is proper - slightly British, very aristocratic, bored and self-involved – it is just as the man is described. I also enjoyed how the reading generally reflected the tone of what’s happening in the book. Not to give too much away, but there is a scene in this audiobook that concerns abduction, drugging, and sex assault. Jennifer Van Dyck’s voice slowed and becomes detached, which deepens the experience for the listener.
Sorry I used my last credit this month on this one
After taking advantage of one of Audible's "Try The First Book in a Series" options I fell madly in love with the story and the characters in Storm Bo..Show More »rn. When finished, I immediately jumped into the Thorn Queen and again was not disappointed. As for Iron Crowned....WHAT HAPPENED? It was like Eugenie had a frontal lobotomy or something. In the first two books she was intelligent, considerate, caring, and rational. In Iron Crowned she became weak, ineffective, sort-of-sleazy, and unable/unwilling to think about the consequences of her unendingly poor decisions. I quit listening several times only to go back later with hope that maybe she would get her act together. But no such luck.
The minute Eugenie turns on Dorian and picks up so easily with the shallow, self-centered Kiyo again, I thought I was done. I mean talk about a ridiculous about-face. She didn't even bother to take two minutes to try to work things out with the person she supposedly loves. She instead makes up her mind without speaking to him, justifies cheating on him, then acts all self-righteous throughout the rest of the book. That was when I first quit listening. Later I thought surely Ms Read would not leave her heroine incapable of learning from her mistakes, but sorry, no chance of that happening. After that every decision she made was so ridiculous all I could do was shake my head and ask, "Really?"
On top of the Eugenie character meltdown I wondered why Ms Read couldn't at least keep her powers together. One minute she's all powerful and the next she's useless. She's supposed to be Storm King's daughter and the most powerful of all the Gentry yet she's constantly getting her a$$ handed to her. Come on. I understand flawed characters and their appeal, but either she's powerful or she's not.....a little consistency please. The nail in the coffin to this story was her handling of Kiyo when he.....Surprise!.....turns on her then she goes groveling back to Dorian. Uuuhhhgggg - I can no longer muster an ounce of respect.
Since this book has so deflated my excitement about the series I went online to read other reviews about the next book, Shadow Heir, which is the final in the series. I needed some hope that it wasn't more of the same so I could finish the series feeling at least a little positive. Unfortunately for me about half the reviews pretty much portray more of the same decay to the story-line and the characters. From what I've read, the ending in Shadow Heir has left so many readers reeling and upset that I've decided I don't want to go there. I've never dumped a series before, but this time I must. Unless you like to be left angry and frustrated with no answers to the most basic questions, sub-plots that add no substance, and a wishy-washy heroine that sinks to new lows right up to the end, don't waste a credit.
Do to all the negative reviews I read - I was almost dreading this book. But how do you not finish a series?? So now I can say having finished it - ..Show More »that I'm definitely glad I did! Was I thrilled with everything "No" - however, I am never 100% happy with all books, especially with so many complicated issues as this series deals with.
I do not want to comment too directly on the story and ruin it for anyone reading this comment, but I do have to agree with many of the reviews that Kiyo is someone I would truly love to throttle if given half a chance,
As for the open ending - not usually a fan, but I KNOW how I want the characters to end - so for me I can accept it.