Everleigh Blair might be the new gladiator queen of Bellona, but her problems are far from over.
First, Evie has to deal with a court full of arrogant, demanding nobles, all of whom want to get their greedy hands on her crown. As if that wasn’t bad enough, an assassin tries to kill Evie in her own throne room.
Despite the dangers, Evie goes ahead with a scheduled trip to the neighboring kingdom of Andvari in order to secure a desperately needed alliance. But complicating matters is the stubborn Andvarian king, who wants to punish Evie for the deaths of his countrymen during the Seven Spire massacre.
But dark forces are at work inside the Andvarian palace, and Evie soon realizes that no one is safe. Worse, Evie’s immunity to magic starts acting in strange, unexpected ways, which makes her wonder whether she is truly strong enough to be a Winter Queen.
But Evie’s magic, life, and crown aren’t the only things in danger—so is her heart, thanks to Lucas Sullivan, the Andvarian king’s bastard son and Evie’s . . . well, Evie isn’t quite sure what Sullivan is to her.
Only one thing is certain—protecting a prince might be even harder than killing a queen…
Release Date: July 2, 2019
Crown of Shards #2
Review copy provided by publisher
Protect the Prince is the second book in the Crown of Shards series from Jennifer Estep, and picks up right where Kill the Queen left off. Everleigh/Evie Blair is one of the Winter Blairs which makes her a winter queen, and Evie is still trying to figure out what being a Winter Queen really means as the book opens. Evie has such a big heart and truly wants to take care of the people in Bellona, though she really doesn't enjoy the politics that goes along with being Queen.
I really enjoyed getting to spend more time with Evie and all of her friends. I loved that she decided to visit Andvari to try and align their kingdoms for the future. Lucas Sullivan/Sully, who Evie has a complicated relationship with, is in fact the bastard son of the Andvarian king. Evie does in fact continue to have to deal with the Bastards Brigade of Morta trying to kill her along with members of the Andvarian royal line. I loved the intrigue, action, and the romance of this story so very much. I will say I figured out the spy in Andvari pretty early on in the story and wondered how Evie missed so many of the signs, and could only figure it was because she was so biased about another character.
I saw so much growth of Evie's character from the start of this series until the end of this book. She seems much more willing to listen to others and has finally started to understand more about her magic. I also loved the romance that had been building between Evie and Sully from the first time they met. Evie has to make some pretty tough choices in this book to make sure she takes care of her kingdom, and I was so afraid it would destroy everything between Evie and Sully. I feel like her plan totally could have backfired on her had she not had so many of her friends watching her back.
Evie continued to communicate with Maeven, who is Mortan and I feel like she will play a very big role in the third book in this series. There is just too much left unfinished between Evie and Maeven for it not to be important for the next book. Protect the Prince left me wanting more in the best way possible. I can't wait to see where Ms. Estep takes us with the third book in this trilogy.
Rating: 4 Stars (B+)