He will be the destruction of the crown and the ruination of the throne.
Power is much easier to acquire than it is to hold onto. Jude learned this lesson when she released her control over the wicked king, Cardan, in exchange for immeasurable power.
Now as the exiled mortal Queen of Faerie, Jude is powerless and left reeling from Cardan’s betrayal. She bides her time determined to reclaim everything he took from her. Opportunity arrives in the form of her deceptive twin sister, Taryn, whose mortal life is in peril.
Jude must risk venturing back into the treacherous Faerie Court, and confront her lingering feelings for Cardan, if she wishes to save her sister. But Elfhame is not as she left it. War is brewing. As Jude slips deep within enemy lines she becomes ensnared in the conflict’s bloody politics.
And, when a dormant yet powerful curse is unleashed, panic spreads throughout the land, forcing her to choose between her ambition and her humanity…
Queen of Nothing picks up a few months after The Wicked King and everything just feels so much more intense in this novel, as it’s the last instalment in the trilogy. All the tension and intrigue of the previous two books has come to a head leaving some characters at complete odds and others forming alliances. As we read at the end of The Wicked King, Jude faced a heartbreaking betrayal at the hands of Cardan, as he exiled her to the mortal world. She resigns herself to this fate, until her twin sister, Taryn comes in desperate need of help. Jude is thrust back into the world of faerie and the stage is set for encounters and battles that will change the fate of Elfhame forever…
It’s so hard to talk about this book without spoiling anything but I’m going to do my best to try. I loved where Holly Black took the characters and us as readers in this book, from the relationship dynamics to the politics and power struggles, it was all so good and so satisfying to see everything come full circle. I enjoyed that we got to revisit and finalise (in a way) so many key relationships such as Jude and Cardan of course, Jude and her sisters, Taryn and Vivi as well as Jude and Madoc.
The latter relationship between Jude and Madoc is definitely the most complex as Madoc was her parents murderer, her captor then eventual father figure which is a wholly unique dynamic, to put it lightly. Their interactions have so many layers and they’re two of the most crafty and cunning characters for sure, and their dynamic reminds me of the one between Cersei and Tywin to an extent.
One of the major draws of the novel is finding out what happens between Jude and Cardan after the big betrayal and let me just say; it was not disappointing! The romance and growth between the two was enjoyable to read and I just couldn’t get enough. I liked that we saw them really open themselves up and realise that loving someone and wanting to be loved in return isn’t a weakness. I loved that they were finally on the same page and we got to see them being the badass duo we always knew they could be. There’s one scene in particular where I was like dying because it was so frickin good and a long time coming, all that tension had to end up somewhere!
While the pacing was quite fast in this novel and some elements did feel rushed – it’s worth noting that this novel only has 308 pages so perhaps this is why. I do wish it had been a bit longer, just so there was more room for everything.
Overall, Queen of Nothing was the perfect ending for this trilogy, I’m just so sad it’s over! I’m so glad that the fan community for these novels is so great because it keeps the magic and characters alive, despite the books being completed. If you haven’t read this trilogy yet, consider this a sign for you to pick it up, I hope you really enjoy it if you do.
Until next time,