The Queen’s Price by Anne Bishop #BookReview #Fantasy #TheQueensPrice

Enter the dark and sensual realms of the Black Jewels in this sweeping story in the New York Times bestselling fantasy saga of three young women who must navigate life within the powerful SaDiablo family—and come to terms with Witch, the Queen who is still the heart and will of that family.

The Queen’s price is to stand against what you know is wrong. To stand and fight, no matter the cost to your court or to yourself. Especially to yourself.

Zoey, a young Queen-in-training at SaDiablo Hall, is wounded…and vulnerable to taunts and criticism. When an opportunity arises to befriend a stranger seeking sanctuary at the Hall, she puts herself and others in danger by ignoring Daemonar Yaslana’s warning to back off.

Meanwhile, the witch Jillian’s family prepares for her Virgin Night, the rite of passage that assures a woman will retain her power and her Jewels. The trouble is Jillian secretly went through the ceremony already. Now she has to explain the omission of that detail to her powerful and lethal family. And the High Lord of Hell’s daughter, Saetien, travels to Scelt to find out about Jaenelle Angelline’s sister—and perhaps to discover truths about herself.

With some guidance from Witch, these three young women will learn when to yield because it is right—and when to take a stand, even if they must pay the Queen’s price.

Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for a free advanced copy of this book to read and review.

What’s it about (in a nutshell):

The Queen’s Price by Anne Bishop is an epic fantasy set in a complex world of jewel-infused magic with a cast of imaginative beings that tell the story of why it’s essential to meet the Queen’s price. The Queen’s price for being a queen and having all that power is always doing what’s right, especially when it’s a hard choice. How can she protect her people if that is not a price she is willing to pay.

My Reading Experience:

I’m not even going to pretend that jumping into a series starting with book twelve is in any way easy, especially with the creative world-building that Bishop is a master. Still, I did just that because I successfully jumped into her other popular series, The Others, at book six. I know that Bishop provides just enough information to enable me to work my way in and understand what is happening around me. 

I love everything about Bishop’s writing. However, I recommend starting this series from either the beginning or possibly from book 10, where the focus changes to the characters explored in this story. If I had more time, I would have read book 1 to get a good basic understanding of the world and its magic system, then skipped on to books 10, 11, and then this one, Book 12. Leaving Books 2-9 for future enjoyment.

But that being said, I enjoyed this story very much and loved the underlying message, which is the importance of doing what’s right, especially when it’s hard. This is one of my favorite messages in coming-of-age stories and one that I have always lived by. The storyline that brings this message home felt very authentic, even in this fantasy world, as the teens are just teens, after all.

Characters:

There are many, many characters in this story. So many that there is a glossary of their names and relationships to each other at the end of the book. They are all very well-developed with a distinct uniqueness that makes them easy to keep straight as I read the story.

My favorite character, though, is easily Saetien. Yes, she can act entitled and thoroughly spoiled, but there is an edge to her and a light in her moral grayness that I found intriguing and wanted to explore more. There would be no persuasion necessary for me to read a book focused solely on Saetien.

Narration & Pacing:

The story is quite long, and the pacing is relatively slow, which was the only drawback for me. The story relies on the strength of the characters, and they are developed enough to carry it. Still, I need more action and adventure for my reading enjoyment. Especially when I am faced with over 500 pages worth of a story.

The narration is in the third-person omniscient style, which is a must considering the broad scope of the story. I found this to be the perfect way to tell it and include enough backstory for crazy readers like me, who aren’t afraid to pick this book up without reading the previous 11 books.

Setting:

Primarily, the book is set in SaDiablo Hall, which has been converted into a training ground for young queens and their courts. The school aspect provides some fun in the story, with the young magic wielders getting into mischief regularly. Anne Bishop always takes special care in her world-building, which is extraordinarily complex and expansive with a unique magic system and many different types of beings to give it a depth of flavor uniquely its own.

Read if you like:

  • Well-developed complex characters
  • Creative and expansive world-building
  • Stories that involve magic

My Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫

Originality10
Writing Quality10
Pace5
Character Development10
‘Couldn’t Put It Down’-ness8
World-Building10
All scores, except the overall rating, are on a scale of 1-10. The overall rating is converted to the standard 5-point system.

13 Replies to “The Queen’s Price by Anne Bishop #BookReview #Fantasy #TheQueensPrice”

  1. I read this one too, and enjoyed it. I also thought it was a bit slow at times. Nice review, Tessa

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s just so long. Long books with long stretches of slow pace are just so difficult to read. But Anne Bishop is wonderful at fantasy. Have you read this whole series?

      Like

    1. You just have to be willing to kind of let go and just keep with the story until all of the pieces fall into place. Which can be very hard, but I often find myself in that situation 🤣

      Like

  2. I’d probably agree about which character would be my favorite. I think morally gray characters are always the most interesting ones. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Tessa.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. If this series starts focusing more on her, I’d definitely continue with it, or if Bishop should take her to her own series – that would make me very happy. She’s just so intriguing.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow! I don’t know if I would read a book in such a long series, it definitely helps when you’ve already read the author before. Great review!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I like to do things like that every once in a while. It takes a different kind of reading strategy and is almost like working out a different reading muscle. It keeps me on my toes!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. The cover is eye-catching. It takes skill to add enough backstory for readers to enter at different points in a series and not be lost. This sounds interesting.

    Like

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