A Crown of Wishes
- Author: Roshani Chokshi
- Genre: YA Fantasy
- Publication Date: March 28, 2017
- Publisher: Wednesday Books
- Series: The Star-Touched Queen #2
CONTENT WARNING: gore, violence
An ancient mystery. An unlikely union. For one young princess in a state of peril, a dangerous wish could be the only answer …
She is the princess of Bharata — captured by her kingdom’s enemies, a prisoner of war. Now that she faces a future of exile and scorn, Gauri has nothing left to lose. But should she trust Vikram, the notoriously cunning prince of a neighboring land? He promises her freedom in exchange for her battle prowess. Together they can team up and win the Tournament of Wishes, a competition held in a mythical city where the Lord of Wealth promises a wish to the victor. It seems like a foolproof plan — until Gauri and Vikram arrive at the tournament and find that danger takes on new shapes: poisonous courtesans, mischievous story birds, a feast of fears, and twisted fairy revels. New trials will test their devotion, strength, and wits at every turn. But what Guari and Vikram will soon discover is that there’s nothing more dangerous than what they most desire.
I wasn’t sure what to expect from this one, but I was hoping it would be as beautiful and enchanting as The Star-Touched Queen, which I absolutely loved. This one had some similarities, but it didn’t quite hit the high bar that was set after reading the first book in the duology. I’d like to thank Whitney @ BooksWhitMe for buddy reading this with me, and giving me the motivation to read this series.
The writing was just as beautiful and evocative. I adore the way Roshani Chokshi writes, and twists words to create a beautiful picture that practically jumps off the page. It made it easy to visualize the scenery, and I now have new bathtub goals:
“In the bath chamber, stained-glass lanterns floated through the steam, while stone crocodiles opened their jaws and sprayed hot jets of water into the empty bath from the corners of the room.”
I really liked the characters, even though Vikram wasn’t exactly what I was expecting. My impression of him in The Star-Touched Queen was that he was also a warrior, but that wasn’t exactly the case. He uses his brains and wit to get through life and difficult situations, and his charm as well. But in reality, he’s a real cinnamon roll. Plus, he’s a lot more open-minded and has a surprisingly modern view on gender roles, which truly made me love him all the more.
Along with the swap of gender roles that Vikram starts, Gauri is the warrior of the pair, but she’s not just brawn, she’s also smart. However, she’s managed to get through life by stuffing her emotions down, rather than experiencing them. There’s a lot of Maya’s influence on Gauri that comes through in this story:
“Who was this girl who softened beneath a sky full of magic and hoped that the city she’d stepped inside traded on dreams?”
Aasha is a third character that appeared partway through the book, and at first, I couldn’t figure out why she suddenly got a POV. However, I really liked her character as well. She was intriguing and I am always up for reading a character who thinks outside of the box. She ended up playing a big role in the story, and I couldn’t wait to find out what was going to happen for her.
The story was so interesting, but it kind of felt like the tournament was just being made up as it went along. During the entire middle part of the book, I was so confused and lost that I struggled to keep what was happening straight in my mind. The last part of the story really redeemed the book, and led to me giving this a higher rating than I was planning to.
People who have sat around with me while I’m reading, especially when there’s a surprising reveal, a shocking plot twist, or an unexpected event often look up in alarm when I gasp audibly. The gasp factor is directly related to the number of times I audibly gasp during a reading, and there isn’t an upper limit.
Gasp Factor: 10
Categories: Book Review