A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Wilhelmina has a hundred enemies.
HER FRIENDS HAVE TURNED. After her identity is revealed during the Inundation, Princess Wilhelmina is kept prisoner by the Indigo Kingdom, with the Ospreys lost somewhere in the devastated city. When the Ospreys’ leader emerges at the worst possible moment, leaving Wil’s biggest ally on his deathbed, she must become Black Knife to set things right.
HER MAGIC IS UNCONTROLLABLE. Wil’s power is to animate, not to give true life, but in the wraithland she commanded a cloud of wraith mist to save herself, and later ordered it solid. Now there is a living boy made of wraith—destructive and deadly, and willing to do anything for her.
HER HEART IS TORN. Though she’s ready for her crown, declaring herself queen means war. Caught between what she wants and what is right, Wilhelmina realizes the throne might not even matter. Everyone thought the wraith was years off, but already it’s destroying Indigo Kingdom villages. If she can’t protect both kingdoms, soon there won’t be a land to rule.
I think after that traumatizing ending from The Orphan Queen we were all ready to find out what was going to happen. The Mirror King picks up directly after that scene…you know the one. I was so happy that we were thrown RIGHT back into the fray and didn’t miss days or weeks of the story. I didn’t reread TOQ before reading this one and it might have helped if I had just so I could remember the secondary characters a bit clearer.
Overall I liked this book and it did answer most of the plot points (though the very end was left fairly open). I did feel like there was way too much shoved into this one book and I think the series would have benefited from one (or even two) more books. Too much happened and things that could have been developed far deeper were somewhat rushed over. It was far too many plot points and characters to have it all try to wrap up in this one book (granted it is a rather thick book).
I really felt that TOQ was a much stronger book and I honestly felt a bit bored through the middle of this one. A lot was happening but I wasn’t as invested. There were entire sections I could have done without personally. I did still like the magic system and the addition of the wraith boy. I thought his character was interesting and I liked that he was so uncontrollable for Wil.
Wil was still bad ass and we get to see her come into her own and even deal with self doubt. Tobiah continues being…Tobiah. I wanted to shake him a few times but I still enjoyed his and Wil’s relationship (though not as well as in the first).
The secondary characters, the Osprey’s etc, were well developed and I thought added to the story well. I’m not sure we really got all that much insight into the more minor secondary characters but some, like James, we really got a lot more about their backstory. I am very much in the minority that this book didn’t rock my emotions or cause me emotional distress. I must have a cold heart because I never could get really emotionally invested. Maybe I would have had I read the prior book again?
I did enjoy The Mirror King though I felt some plot points were rushed (or left open) while other areas dragged. I think this series would have benefited from being a trilogy rather than a duology since there was just so much to address. I do think that fans of TOQ will find this novel to be gratifying and a great read.