The Wicked King
By: Holly Black
Me: I’m not really bothered by anything in books anymore. Nothing surprises me.
Character burns childhood stuffed animals.
Me: That is the epitome of evil!
So the Wicked King was one of my most anticipated of the year. I took notes of my reactions while reading them and overall- I thought the book was fine. I’m excited to see where this goes and I think tails (which I completely forgot Cardan had) are deal breakers for me.
I mean Jason could probably make tails as cool as he made Aquaman but still…
Black knows how to nail the endings.
I thought this with the Cruel Prince as well. Throughout the book is good. It’s fun. It’s decent but nothing really special and then boom! She hits you with intrigue, backstabbing and one hell of a cliffhanger ending that sucks you back in and makes you forget any problems. The real question at the close of this trilogy is can she stick the landing without a cliffhanger.
Just as quick note Taryn is better in this book but she’s still essentially a blank slate who does what male characters want her to do. I will laugh if there’s another .5 novella about her explaining her reasons cause honestly that stuff needs to be dealt with in the main novels or Taryn can go leap of a cliff.
Why can’t/won’t she leave?
Jude is a fascinating character despite Black’s maybe not doing the others justice. I totally felt for her in the first book when she talked about wanting to well revenge herself and prove that she belonged in the world she was raised but treated horribly. You get some notions here that Jude has changed things for the better especially for mortals.
But she skirts being annoying and imperialistic by thinking only she can do it. It’s a true shock for Jude when Cardan has actual thoughts she doesn’t tell him to and might even be a good King for Fae World. But the question of why doesn’t she leave isn’t really answered in this one. I mean even Oak whose younger is doing better in the mortal world. Jude could go back.
It’s a toxic relationship not just with Cardan but the whole bloody world and it makes it really hard to root for her when your thinking, “Oh honey, just let it go…”
I thought after the first book let’s see where this goes and I think Black right now is doing this relationship/enemy-ship/ whatever better than some other writers. We do get a scene that’s neither as graphic yet somehow still hotter than anything in that other fairy world…
I just cannot ship them.
So The Wicked King wrap-up… A lot like the Cruel Prince. I’m in it til the end as I also think it will be really interesting to see how Holly Black manages to wrap this up in a (hopefully) true ending without relying on a cliffhanger.