The Queen of Nothing, Book 3 of The Folk of The Air series
By Holly Black
This one made all the others worth it
I don’t usually review anything but the first in a series, and I rarely review bestsellers, but after finishing The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black, I want to talk about it. Maybe I’m feeling sentimental, and nostalgic-Christmas is coming, a season that brings all the feels out of me-but whatever the reason, this book made me happy.
Book 1 in the series, The Cruel Prince, was alright. I happened to get an audio copy from the library (my experience with this series is all in audio format which I know can change much about the “reading” experience), and though I was not a fan of Jude, and felt the entire storyline petty and absurd, I made it through to the end. I believe I gave it 3 stars.
Obviously, I was curious enough to go on a wait for book 2. I think it was Cardan that kept me in it. His cruelty was such an obvious front, and Jude’s jumbled feelings for him seemed worth seeing through to the end. Also, I like having an audiobook to listen to on standby, so rather than make a decision on something else, I stuck with it. Okay! I got sucked into the teen angst of it. Isn’t that why we read these books? #sorrynotsorry
Book 2 was better. I genuinely could not anticipate what the hell anyone was up to, and the end literally had me asking, “what just happened.” So much so, even through Book 3, I forgot the main rule of fairy-the Fae can’t lie-that I continued to wonder if it was all a con. Part of me was excited about this antiromance stance. If this con really was what it seemed on the outside, this series would not end like I thought (hoped?).
Going into Book 3 (here’s where I get into spoilers), I figured we’d see Cardan and Jude reconcile and get together. It’s the nature of the genre. But read my last paragraph. I was so curious about how that might be possible. There was nothing I could see that would allow the pair to ever trust each other, regardless of their feelings. Maybe this wouldn’t be a happily ever after story. Ironically, this was a book where I hoped for it. Where Throne of Glass sorely disappointed me by not having a more gritty, heart jerking ending, I was rooting for it in The Folk of The Air.
“Will you just let yourself be rescued?” Another reason for my enjoyment of this book. Jude really needs no one to save her. There was a moment, maybe two, that I was actually a little annoyed with how the author took liberties with Jude’s character to make her so unsure and so lost. I’d like to think Jude’s time in Book 2 might have washed that out of her. Sure, she found herself elevated beyond what she might have dreamed, but she kept saying it to herself throughout: I am the High Queen of Fairy. She was angry she couldn’t draw on the title, and when Jude finally could, she didn’t know what to do? At least she would have known how to pretend; she would understand the need to posture.
I digress. I meant to talk about how awesome Jude is. In Book 1, I found Jude a little much, but even getting in way over her head, she rocks it. Staying firm against the pressure to give up some power to Madoc in Book 2 showed a will of steel. I was rooting for her to tell him what was going on. I guess I should never be made a spy, or advisor to any crown, and especially not a High Queen.
I did want to see a bit more development of Jude’s magic, her tie to the land, but there’s only so much paper to print books on, and I guess, at the end of the day, it wasn’t really relevant. Still, when has more magic ever been a bad thing?
The Queen of Nothing definitely made me glad I stuck with the series even when I considered just turning it off for other things. A modern take on the Fae Courts, a little present-day mixed with magical, some teen angst and enemies-to-lovers twisted in with sibling rivalry and grand fights makes the series worth being swallowed up in.
Happy Reading 🙂