This Cursed Crown (These Feathered Flames, #2)

This Cursed Crown (These Feathered Flames, #2)
Age Range
Release Date
December 06, 2022
Buy This Book
In the explosive sequel to These Feathered Flames, twin sisters Izaveta and Asya find themselves separated once again, but discovering a way back to each other may be their most perilous challenge yet.
Awakening to find herself trapped in a strange tower, Izaveta knows she must find her way back to the Tóurensi palace and claim the throne. But even with an unexpected ally’s help, she worries she might not be able to get news of her survival to her sister and escape this frozen land.
Back at home, Asya enlists Nikov’s help to prove Izaveta is still alive, even as she finds herself forced to navigate the political world she always sought to avoid to save her queendom, her loved ones, and herself.
But as the sisters work independently to reunite, a dangerous force lies in wait, trying to regain power in order to overthrow the monarchy…

Editor review

1 review
satisfying conclusion
Overall rating
Writing Style
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
THIS CURSED CROWN is an intriguing and ultimately satisfying conclusion to the THESE FEATHERED FLAMES duology. Picking up where the first book ended, we first follow Asya who is still reeling from the loss of her sister at her hands. With the Firebird, her wants/thoughts are sometimes in conflict with the role she must play, a fact that becomes clear as she performs the jobs she must to keep the balance. Meanwhile, she is also wondering about what happened to Izaveta and whether there is any chance of rescue.

Later in the story, as stated in the synopsis, we begin to also follow Izaveta, who did not expect to survive the balancing of the Firebird. She is trapped in a tower at the hands of someone she would never have suspected. However, things are even more complicated than they seem and Iza is racing against the clock and untold power to find her way back to the throne and Asya.

What I loved: While there are several themes, sisterhood remains a strong current of the story. Asya and Iza are two sides of the same coin. While they were raised for different roles, their connection and love for each other is a driving factor for both. Other themes of the story are around politics, complicated morality, power and socioeconomic disparity, betrayal, mind games, and the weight of emotions and love.

The Firebird is a tool of balance with rules that seem simple in terms of making sure everyone pays the price for the magic they cast. However, this is complicated by situations in which wealthy people force their servants (under threats of the jobs they cannot afford to lose) to finish casting their spells, so that the servants will pay the price. Asya is a tool of the system, and while she wishes that she had more of a role to play in changing things, she is powerless to evaluate the morality and fairness of these situations.

While the story is told from both Iza and Asya's perspectives, Asya really dominates the story. She has been understanding her role and relationship with the Firebird more. While this was particularly complicated in the first story, she is beginning to find her own way to embrace who she has become. At the same time, she is evaluating the connections she has to Yuliana and Iza, as these are potential weaknesses, but they are also drivers for her behavior. This conflict between love and duty is one that continues throughout this series.

This story expands a bit more on the mythology of this world and the magic. This is a particularly interesting element of the story with implications for religion and the way that fables are born from fact. History has its own twist from the people who tell it. Their religion is also not so smooth and clear-cut, with the ability to influence rituals and decisions. The plots around this world-building and related themes are strong throughout the duology.

What left me wanting more: This book felt like it meandered a lot, particularly in the early parts, which felt rather slow. The path was a bit windy, and it was tough to remember details from earlier needed later. This did get smoother later in the story as it really found its stride.

Final verdict: THIS CURSED CROWN is a satisfying and compelling conclusion to a YA fantasy duology about sisters, magic, and destiny.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful? 0 0

User reviews

There are no user reviews for this listing.
Already have an account? or Create an account