The Crown's Fate
The Crown's Fate

Series: Crown's Game Vol. 2   

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Annotation: Vika struggles with dangers in her new role as the Imperial Enchanter while Pasha faces disputes about his legitimacy and Nikolai considers how far he is willing to go to return to the world.
Catalog Number: #138314
Format: Publisher's Hardcover
All Formats: Search
Publisher: HarperCollins
Copyright Date: 2017
Edition Date: 2017
Pages: 417 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: 0-06-242261-8
ISBN 13: 978-0-06-242261-3
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 2016962059
Dimensions: 24 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
Backstory is always a problem for sequels, and the elaborate 1825 alternative-history Russian setting of this title will be daunting to newcomers. However, fans of The Crown's Game (2016) will be delighted to see how Skye writes her way out of a mostly dead antihero, a love triangle, and two royal brothers vying to become tsar of all the Russias. As in the first title, inventive feats of magic by sparring enchanters are the highlight; Vika's control of the elements and Nikolai's affinity to metal allow for imaginative showdowns of sorcery. Skye weaves in Russian history and culture, such as the Decembrists, Fabergé eggs, the Nutcracker ballet, and Pushkin's "Bronze Horseman," along with plenty of culinary and costume details. There's nonstop action, lots of chapter hooks, comfortably predictable elements of romance, and an empowering message ("Imagine, and it shall be. There are no limits"), all of which, despite some stilted writing, will pull readers right along.
Kirkus Reviews
The 1825 Decembrist rebellion is co-opted for the second half of a lavish, Tolstoy-tinged fantasy duology, the sequel to The Crown's Game (2016).Vika may now be the Russian Imperial Enchanter, but she cannot overcome her resentment against Pasha, the not-yet-crowned tsesarevich, either for forcing the deadly end of the Crown's Game or for his autocratic commands. Meanwhile, Nikolai's sacrifice left him trapped in an enchanted dream, seething with jealousy and despair; unwittingly feeding on dark energy frees him into a shadowy almost-life, plotting bloody vengeance against Pasha, who is his half brother. The operatic plot and outsized passions of the first title skated on the edge of melodrama; this follow- up, however, tips over into trite bathos. Neither the tiresome romantic quadrangle among the all-white characters nor the muddled magical system is improved by prose marred with clunky metaphors and a preference to tell rather than show. Vika's brash willfulness and Pasha's feckless insecurity fit poorly with their serious responsibilities; while both mature somewhat into their duties, they continue to value personal inclination over the common good. Worse, the narrative permits Nikolai to indulge his selfish petulance and bitter envy even to the gruesome suffering and death of (literally) thousands. Readers may well prefer the bittersweet, ambiguous ending of the first volume to this overly pat conclusion. (Fantasy. 12-18)
School Library Journal
Gr 8 UpThough the Crown's Game may have ended in Book 1, there is still much in store for Vika, Nikolai, and Pasha. This title opens with Vika mid-evanescence, as she is performing yet another mundane task for the tsardom since winning the Crown's Game and the role of Russian Imperial Enchantress. Vika wants nothing more than to be reunited with Nikolai, her adversary-turned-friend, but since he sacrificed himself so she could live (and win the game), Nikolai has been trapped in a dream version of the Kazakh steppe. Motivated by revenge, Nikolai manages to escape his prison and return to Saint Petersburg. His plan? Kill Tsesarevich Pasha and take the throne. Vika tries to reconcile the demands of the state (Pasha) with the deeper ancient connection (the magical Bolshebnoie Duplo) binding her to outlaw Nikolai. With so much of Vika's energy devoted to empathizing with and reacting to the actions of Pasha and Nikolai, her boldness, so central to the first installment, is sadly missing. There are a number of underdeveloped side plots: Baba Yaga's chicken-legged house makes an appearance, and the Decembrist revolt plays a role in reuniting the trio, but their rejoicing at the triumph of the monarchy hits a sour note in hindsight. A tavern scene in which gamblers are briefly overheard gloating about sexual assault feels out of place for the series. VERDICT An uneven follow-up; consider only for fans of the first installment.Della Farrell, School Library Journal
Voice of Youth Advocates
Wild magic awakens in The Crown’s Fate, historical fantasy set in an alternate version of Imperial Russia. In this action-filled sequel to The Crown’s Game (HarperCollins, 2016), Vika Andreyeva has survived the magical competition but is torn between allegiances to two half-brothers. As the Imperial Enchantress, Vika must protect the life and power of Pasha, the future tsar, yet she has strong feelings for Nikolai, who lives a shadow existence. Nikolai returns to life when his estranged mother, Aizhana, siphons energy from others to re-animate and corrupt him. Vika imprisons Nikolai inside a giant version of the traditional Russian painted egg; he escapes to wreak more havoc.
Reviewing Agencies: - Find Other Reviewed Titles
ALA Booklist (4/1/17)
Kirkus Reviews
School Library Journal (5/1/17)
Voice of Youth Advocates
Word Count: 95,680
Reading Level: 6.0
Interest Level: 7-12
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 6.0 / points: 15.0 / quiz: 189417 / grade: Upper Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:6.4 / points:23.0 / quiz:Q72581
Lexile: HL820L

The gorgeous and darkly compelling sequel to The Crown’s Game—perfect for fans of Red Queen and Shadow and Bone. A New York Times bestseller!

Magic is growing, shadows are rising, and the throne is at stake…

Russia is on the brink of great change. Pasha’s coronation approaches, and Vika is now the Imperial Enchanter, but the role she once coveted may be more difficult—and dangerous—than she ever expected.

Pasha is grappling with his own problems—his legitimacy is in doubt, the girl he loves loathes him, and he believes his best friend is dead. When a challenger to the throne emerges—and with the magic in Russia growing rapidly—Pasha must do whatever it takes to keep his position and protect his kingdom.

For Nikolai, the ending of the Crown’s Game stung deeply. Although he just managed to escape death, Nikolai remains alone, a shadow hidden in a not-quite-real world of his own creation. But when he’s given a second chance at life—tied to a dark price—Nikolai must decide just how far he’s willing to go to return to the world.

With revolution on the rise, dangerous new magic rearing up, and a tsardom up for the taking, Vika, Nikolai, and Pasha must fight—or face the destruction of not only their world but also themselves.

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