4 of 5 stars
“Queer retellings” is one of my favorite genres and this book did not disappoint. It follows Princess Lynet and Queen Mina, her stepmother. The story switches narration between these two characters, describing Mina’s backstory and Lynet’s fascination with the new court surgeon Nadia before the timelines come together to follow the action-filled second half.
It took me a little while to get into this book. I read the first half over the course of a few weeks and the second half over the course of a day. That being said, I do love the setup in the first half of the book. It really helped me understand Mina’s actions through the rest of the book.
I also usually dislike books in which the primary conflict is based on a misunderstanding or poor communication, but this book did it so well that I loved it. Bashardoust did a masterful job at crafting everyone’s motivations and actions, so that even when characters did stupid things, I could say, “Yeah, it makes sense that they did that.”
Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone who likes YA retellings, books about mother/daughter relationships, or low-fantasy magical stories.