Hello everyone! Today I am back and I am doing it with a bang since I am here to share with you this amazing book! We have reached the end of this series, and I am so glad to be here to share it with you all! I was in a pretty long hiatus, and I would go back to it in a couple of week, sadly, but for now I am here and I am really excited so… let’s go!
Thanks to the Editor and to NetGalley. I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Title: Priest Of Crowns
Series: War For The Rose Throne #4
Author: Peter McLean
‘Praise be to Our Lady of Eternal Sorrows, and blessed be the Ascended Martyr.’ Those were the words on lips of the faithful: Blessed be the Ascended Martyr, and woe betide you if you thought otherwise. The word Unbeliever had become a death sentence on the streets in those days.
Gangster, soldier, priest. Governor, knight, and above all, Queen’s Man.
Once, Tomas Piety looked after his men, body and soul, as best he could. Then those who ran his country decided his dark talents would better serve in the corridors of power.
Crushed by the power of the Queen’s Men and with the Skanian menace rising once more on the streets of Ellinburg, Tomas Piety is forced to turn to old friends, old debts and untrustworthy alliances.
Meanwhile in the capital city of Dannsburg, Dieter Vogel is beginning to wonder if the horror he has unleashed in the Martyr’s Disciples might be getting out of control.
With revolution brewing and tragedy and terrorism running rife in the cities, Piety and Vogel must each weigh the cost of a crown.
Talking about this book is not easy, not easy at all. I was here for the first book, with Tomas and the Pious Men, and I was there while their story developed. And now I am here for the end. And I was excited. A lot. And happy, too. But I was also scared. So so scared. And sad. Because, sure, all good things have to end, sooner or later, and I am grateful to have been here to see the end of it, and to be with these amazing characters once more, but it is also sad to have to say goodbye to all of them.
But being with a series from the start, to see it growing and becoming popular, to see it developing and fly, if I can say so, it is always an amazing gift, and for this I am grateful. And you grew really attached to it, too, because you just have to feel for the characters, especially since we have some really amazing characters here. You just have to meet them all!
Sure, Tomas is an amazing MC, and I loved to have him as the narrator of this story. He tells us what happened with his unique voice, and the author did an amazing job with this. There is a lot of things to love in this series, but this one was one of my favorite. The way in wich an auhtor choose to tell us their story is important, and sometime it can make or unmake the whole book. In this case, it makes the experience more engaging and you are drawn into the events and into the story without even noticing it. One moment you open the book and start reading. the next one you are there with Tomas and Bloody Anne, walking the street of Ellinburg, or Dannsurg, with them.
And, as I was saying before, you’ll meet some really intriguing characters. That you do! Tomas is my favorite, he is the MC, he is the narrator, and he is also a whole lot of different things: he is a priest, for one, and he is a gangster. He is also a noble of sort. And he is a Queen’s Man. And more. Also, he suffer from battle shock. And he is not the only one. The PTSD and related problems are up center in this series. We have a lot of veterans of different wars in this series, and they all suffers for the things they have lived through. And this part has a lot of relevance in the story, and I really liked to see it. It is important to speak about mental health, and about the terrific price that war has. And not only because going to war is an expensive matter, but because it is extremely costly in human lifes. And it is not only about the people who die in war, it is about the people who come back from the war. And I think that talking about that, remembering that surviving a war is a complex and heavy thing, is important. It is fundamental. Especially today. So, kudos for this, really!
But I was speaking about the characters. I love that with each and every book in this series we get to know more about these amazing and complex characters. Even the secondary ones are not forgotten, and we get to see them more, and we learn more about them. Every single one of them has a personality, has dreams and levers and habits and whanot. They all are alive, not one of them, primary secondary or tertiary characters, is plain or bidimensional. Every single one of them has characters. And this is an amzing thing. And a feat for the author, I am sure. But I am so glad that he did an amazing job here.
We have Cutter, for example. He is an amazing and complex character. He was one of my favorite, and if you haven’t started this series yet, well… go for it. You need to meet Cutter. He is quite the morally grey character, to be kind. But to be honest, we don’t have black and white here, we have fifty shadows of grey, and even more! So Cutter is in line with everyone else around him. But he is worth meeting!
And then we have Billy and Mina, and these two… oh guys, these two! This is a low fantasy, we don’t really have a lot of fantasy things going on, and the magic system is not really something that we get developed. But this is not bad, at all. I am not complaining, I think that it is perfect for the series as it is, but it is not something really “systematic”. It is there, we have magic, of a sort, but nobody know jack about it. Even the ones who use this magic. It is just there. And I loved this. Sure, I am a big fan of interesting and complex magic system, mind me, but sometimes it is good to see different things, and I firmly believe that in this case we get the right one. And seeing Billy and Mina with their magic, and the cost of it, and the difficulties and all, is intriguing.
And then we have Bloody Anne. She is quite the character. And she is right there, beside Tomas from the start. And their relationship is one of the more beautiful, if I can use beautiful in this case, I have saw in books. And it is so because it felt real, and because at the center of it we have two complex and deep characters, that are humans in all the ways, and we get them all. There is nothing hidden or sweetened between these two, it is a hard friendship for a hard world.
And there are really a lot of other interesting characters, so please, go and read this series. They all are worth meeting.
And now we have the hard part. The ending. This book is the end of this series. And it is a complex and fascinating series, with great characters, a lot of intrigues, a lot of action and fights and betrayals and surprises and unexpected alliances and everything. And it is so hard to talk about the ending. On one hand it is difficult because I can’t do spoilers, and on the other hand… I am a bit thorn. Mind me, I loved the ending. And I think it is just the perfect one for this story. It really fits. It is proper. And it is amazing. And it was sort of unexpected. But even if I really like the end, even if I think it proper and I have no complaints, I was hoping against all hope for something different. And again, on one hand it is not as bad as I was fearing, and for this I am grateful beyond words, really, but on the other hand, I was hoping for a little more of sunshine in there. Even if, as I said, it was a hope against all hopes, because this is a harsh world for sure.
All things considered this was my least favorite of the series (and a book that is the “least favorite” and get a 4 stars out of 5 let you know all you need about this series!), because it was the more repetitive of them, but since I got an ARC it is possible that in the finished edition things are smoothed over on this front too. And it is an amazing book, the perfect finale for a great series, that you have to read if you like harsh worlds and hars characters. You just need to read it!
And you can find my reviews for the previous books here: Priest of Bones, Priest of Lies and Priest of Gallows.
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And what about you? Have you started this series? Or do you wish to?? Let me know!!!