Perfect for fans of Shadow and Bone and Red Queen, The Crown’s Game is a thrilling and atmospheric historical fantasy set in Imperial Russia about two teenagers who must compete for the right to become the Imperial Enchanter—or die in the process—from debut author Evelyn Skye.
Vika Andreyeva can summon the snow and turn ash into gold. Nikolai Karimov can see through walls and conjure bridges out of thin air. They are enchanters—the only two in Russia—and with the Ottoman Empire and the Kazakhs threatening, the tsar needs a powerful enchanter by his side.
And so he initiates the Crown’s Game, an ancient duel of magical skill—the greatest test an enchanter will ever know. The victor becomes the Imperial Enchanter and the tsar’s most respected adviser. The defeated is sentenced to death.
Raised on tiny Ovchinin Island her whole life, Vika is eager for the chance to show off her talent in the grand capital of Saint Petersburg. But can she kill another enchanter—even when his magic calls to her like nothing else ever has?
For Nikolai, an orphan, the Crown’s Game is the chance of a lifetime. But his deadly opponent is a force to be reckoned with—beautiful, whip smart, imaginative—and he can’t stop thinking about her.
And when Pasha, Nikolai’s best friend and heir to the throne, also starts to fall for the mysterious enchantress, Nikolai must defeat the girl they both love . . . or be killed himself.
As long-buried secrets emerge, threatening the future of the empire, it becomes dangerously clear . . . the Crown’s Game is not one to lose.
There are times when I read a book and decide to just go with the story, see where it takes me and leave the "reviewing" for after I finish the book. From this perspective, I truly enjoyed reading The Crown's Game!
The story is full of magic, mysticism, romance and I found it to be an enjoyable, relaxing and fun read. I walked away from this story with a whimsical smile and a warm feeling in my heart.
From a reviewer perspective though, there were definitely some sticking points. The characters themselves and their interactions were not as believable as I would have wished for and the story was a bit choppy in it's flow. Some of the sub-plots were not developed enough to flow with the story and really did not impact it well.
In regards to the "life and death Crown's Game", the book's synopsis built the story up as one of intense magic but the story itself did not live up to that. Could it be the synopsis of the book was off and it negatively impacted the reception of this book's true story?
Having shared all the above, I have to say I enjoyed reading The Crown's Game and I am eager to read the second installment of this series when it's released. Check this book out for yourself; I'd love to hear what you think about it!
Thank you to Balzar + Bray as well as Edelweiss for the gift of this book in exchange for an honest review.