A Cruel and Fated Light

A Cruel and Fated Light
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Release Date
May 24, 2022
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After thwarting the man behind the gruesome ironborn murders—and breaking several fae laws to do so—all Arlo wants is a quiet summer. As the deity of luck’s Hollow Star, capable of bringing about endless possibilities, this shouldn’t be too much to ask, right?

But someone is still trying to summon the mythical Seven Deadly Sins. All signs point to immortal meddling, and if this is the gods’ attempt at returning to the Mortal Realm, it’s Arlo they’re going to use to do it.

When Queen Riadne offers to host Arlo at the Seelie Summer palace, she jumps at the chance. She’ll get to see more of Vehan and Aurelian and perhaps even work out her complicated feelings for the gorgeous ex-Fury, Nausicaä. But no one trusts the infamous Queen of Light, even as Arlo wonders if she’s just been greatly misunderstood.

With the Summer Solstice quickly approaching, everyone expects Riadne to finally challenge the High King for his crown. And as Arlo struggles to get control of her powers and take charge of her destiny, she’ll soon be faced with a choice that won’t only change the fate of the Mortal Realm forever but could condemn it to a cruelty the likes of which the Courts have never known.

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A Cruel and Fated Light - Book Review
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Let's talk about this book. For Book 1, I loved the plot but wasn't a big fan of the characters. The way I like to do my reviews is talk about how I felt about the story then talk about the characters. However, this book was a little different for me. Because in the 640 pages that was this book, nothing happened until the last 50 pages. In the first book, I felt like so much happened. In this one, there are like 3 action scenes? Maybe... and all of them were so short and I felt like didn't really provide much of a purpose. But 640 pages, with nothing. Yet I enjoyed this book so much more than the first one? The ending was predictable. And especially the epilogue - I had that figured out in book 1. However, I flew through this book and did not struggle with it as much as I did the first one.

So why? Because the characters were so, so, so, much better in this book. I really liked getting Celadon's point of view. It didn't happen a lot, which I am glad for. He had the perfect amount of time. Riadne's point of view was also given, but honestly - I felt like we didn't need it. There really was no reason to explain why she is the way she is. It was perfectly understandable with all the other stories. I enjoyed Vehan so much more this time around. And same with Aurelan. Maybe because they weren't as whiny and pining as the first book? They were still pining for each other, but that wasn't their main focus as a character anymore. Arlo was way more confident in this book and I really enjoyed reading more about her coming into her powers. But Arlo definitely makes naive choices, however, she is meant to be naive. And Nausicaa. I flipping LOVE Nausicaa. If this whole book was from her point of view, I would have been happy. She is my favorite.

Overall, A Cruel and Fated Light by Ashley Shuttleworth was so much better than the first book, in my opinion. Which I find conflicts with my review a little bit because I feel like nothing happened in this book. There really wasn't any progress made in the main story, until the very end. But the characters were so much more enjoyable that I found myself enjoying this book more. So if you liked the first book, or even semi-liked the first book, don't expect much in terms of progressing the story but expect to really get behind these characters. Because book 3 is where it's all going to go down.
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