Review Sunday: The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen

Goodreads Blurb:
Her throne awaits . . . if she can live long enough to take it.

It was on her nineteenth birthday that the soldiers came for Kelsea Glynn. They’d come to escort her back to the place of her birth – and to ensure she survives long enough to be able to take possession of what is rightfully hers.

But like many nineteen-year-olds, Kelsea is unruly, has high principles and believes she knows better than her elders. Unlike many nineteen-year-olds, she is about to inherit a kingdom that is on its knees – corrupt, debauched and dangerous.

Kelsea will either become the most fearsome ruler the kingdom has ever known . . . or be dead within the week.

Combining thrilling adventure and action, dark magic, mystery and romance, The Queen of the Tearling is the debut of a born storyteller blessed with a startling imagination.”

This book, like The Queen of Someday, I chose to read purely because it starts with a Q.  I know my priorities are a little skewed but work with me!

I really liked the premise of this story.  It involves shady politics, ruling a kingdom that’s fallen to ruin and discovering things that have been left in the past.  I’ve read books similar but never with this kind of setting.

The problem I had with this book is that there’s just so much.  If you’ve read the Lord of the Rings books or even the His Fair Assassin series then you know what I’m talking about.  There’s just so much information that they give you and sometimes you just can’t remember it all and then you don’t know what’s more important and what you should pay more attention to so you just try to squeeze it all in but don’t absorb that much at all.  Yeah.  Also, the background of ‘The Crossing’ was a bit vague and I wish there was more background on that because it’s mentioned so much but you don’t know anything about it really even though it seems like the characters know a bit more than you.  Those two things together threw me off and I ended up skimming a whole lot and skipping to the good parts.

With that being said, I did enjoy reading from all the different perspectives and I feel that they were switched between at just the right times so it wasn’t abrupt or confusing.  It also has a fair bit of mystery that I enjoyed.  Just figuring out what exactly the significance of the necklace is along with Kelsea and watching her grow.  I really can’t wait to read the sequel because it ended without much conflict going on (besides a few connected incidents).  I can see why the author is saving the war until later in the series.

There were a few modern references that did help me place the time frame and it was so awesome to see them in there.  Also, I actually did enjoy the lack of romance in this book (not complete lack from significantly less than other fantasy books).

The Final Verdict:
An enjoyable book although I found myself skimming quite a few times.  The different perspectives were greatly appreciated and spot on and the mystery of the necklace and the empire is intriguing to read about.  I also really loved the modern references!
3.5 stars

“Even a book can be dangerous in the wrong hands, and when that happens, you blame the hands, but you also read the book.” 

“…Javel saw evil in those bright blue eyes, not malevolence but something much worse: an evil born of lack of self-awareness, an evil that didn’t know it was evil and therefore could justify anything.” 

“The future was only disasters of the past, waiting to happen anew.” 

“Those who cease to worry about their souls often find them difficult to reclaim later”

“They had found the seven volumes of Rowling with no help at all, but there was no squabbling.” 

“Weakness, all the more dangerous for being combined with a sense of entitlement” 

0 thoughts on “Review Sunday: The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen”

  1. I loved this book! I agree about the lack of details about The Crossing. I'm hoping we get more details about that in the next book. I'm really curious about what actually happened. At first I wasn't sure if this was an alternate history or a \”futuristic\” book. Obviously the references to JK Rowling and electronic books make it seem like something serious happens in our future to cause society to collapse. So much to learn!Vicarious Caytastrophe


  2. Yeah me too. I was kind of confused at first when they kept talking about The Crossing and if it's set in our world or another world or what. Right?! It seems a bit unlikely that it's a totally different world… maybe an undiscovered continent or just North America or South America or something? Yes!


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