Genres: Fantasy, Romance,
Release Date: 03/07/2014
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Winning what you want may cost you everything you love.
a general’s daughter in a vast empire that revels in war and enslaves
those it conquers, seventeen-year-old Kestrel has two choices: she can
join the military or get married. But Kestrel has other intentions. One
day, she is startled to find a kindred spirit in a young slave up for
Arin’s eyes seem to defy everything and everyone.
Following her instinct, Kestrel buys him—with unexpected consequences.
It’s not long before she has to hide her growing love for Arin. But he,
too, has a secret, and Kestrel quickly learns that the price she paid
for a fellow human is much higher than she ever could have imagined.
Set in a richly imagined new world, The Winner’s Curse
by Marie Rutkoski is a story of deadly games where everything is at
stake, and the gamble is whether you will keep your head or lose your
I've been looking for a book that I loved as much as I loved Poison Study and now, I've finally found it. I was worried about reading The Winner's Curse at first, as I've read books before with a lot of hype and been really disappointed (looking at your Throne of Glass), but this book was everything I hoped for and more.
The romance is a strong focus in this book and I completely loved it and waited eagerly for it to happen, Kestrel and Arin are such a perfect couple and the slow burn aspect just drove me crazy with hoping. They're both strong willed characters, stuck in situations they can't change and I think that's the reason they were drawn to each other in the first place. Arin surprised me, often the male love interest thinks about little but the main character but Arin was quite ruthless, much like my beloved Valek from Poison Study. Yes. Mine.
All the relationships in this story made this story so much better. Kestrel and her father have a strange relationship because she has no mother and no real father figure, he's hardly ever there and when he is he's only interested in trying to get her to join in the war effort. She does have a motherly figure however in the form of one of Kestrel's old servants.
One thing that did frustrate me was Arin's obsession with Kestrel's emotions. He seemed to think throughout most of the book that because she lives this privileged life that was ripped away from the Herrani, that she didn't care. In fact I felt that she felt too much but just went the wrong way about it more often than not. I think he picked up by the end of the book that she wasn't who he thought she was.
The ending was so, so painful. In fact the last couple of lines just made me want to wrap myself in a duvet cocoon and sob hysterically until the next book's release. Every so often I think of Arin's last line and sniff a little to myself. I need the sequel so, so badly I can't even. Is it out yet?