Review copy was received from NetGalley. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
The True Queen by Zen Cho
Series: Sorcerer Royal #2
Published by Ace on March 12, 2019
Genres: Fantasy, Historical Fiction
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When sisters Muna and Sakti wake up on the peaceful beach of the island of Janda Baik, they can’t remember anything, except that they are bound as only sisters can be. They have been cursed by an unknown enchanter, and slowly Sakti starts to fade away. The only hope of saving her is to go to distant Britain, where the Sorceress Royal has established an academy to train women in magic.
If Muna is to save her sister, she must learn to navigate high society, and trick the English magicians into believing she is a magical prodigy. As she's drawn into their intrigues, she must uncover the secrets of her past, and journey into a world with more magic than she had ever dreamed.
I loved the first book in the Sorcerer Royal series with its British society, social issues, magic, and a sprinkling of creatures and fae. The True Queen begins not so long after that story, but focuses on Malyasian witches and the fae. The two young women from the island, go to England, and this is the world already known, with some of the characters from the first book.
We mostly see things through Muna’s view and learn the most of her character. She is a kind and likeable person. She spent most of her time alone or with people she hardly knew. Sakti is not present for a long time so we don’t know her well at all. The other primary character is Hennrietta Stapleton, who is Prunella’s longtime friend and instructor at the Academy. I would have enjoyed more of Prunella and Zacharias. There was barely a hint of romance in this story.
The mystery is mostly relocating Sakti, a missing treasure and her history with Muna. There is not much overall about the political issues although the social issues are woven into the story. “Proper” women are still not “supposed” to learn magic. The ambiguities of the fae world and its unusual aspects were not as satisfying to me as the more structured, yet magical outcomes in Sorcerer to the Crown. I hope we will get more with Prunella and Zacharias and the overall world magic political situation.
Giveaway (ends today):
About THE TRUE QUEEN: Ace Trade Paperback | March 12, 2019
Ace/Berkley are giving away advance reading copies to 25 lucky winners. We will be running this giveaway February 25—March 6. Enter to win:
- The Fiery Crown by Jeffe Kennedy @JeffeKennedy @StMartinsPress - May 26, 2020
- Sunday Post – 24 May 2020 @kimbacaffeinate @readingreality @Tynga - May 24, 2020
- Broken Bonds by Kaylea Cross @kayleacross @InkSlingerPR - May 23, 2020
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2019 Releases