by Sarah Fine
Synopsis: Elli is a Saadella, second-in-command to the throne. By an old prophecy, she has always been destined to be the next and most powerful Valita, the Queen who wields both ice and fire magic. When the Valita suddenly dies, Elli takes her place. The Queen’s magic enters Elli swiftly...but it doesn’t work.
Stunned and disgraced, Elli flees to the Outlands, where banished criminals reside. There she finds that everything she’s learned in the comforts of Kapuri, surrounded by luxury and priests, is called into question. Elli learns more about magic, her prophecy and her role in her foretold destiny. With war looming, Elli must make a choice between sides: to defend or to protect before all is destroyed.
Favorite Quotes: The sun draws its yellow tongue along the surface of the waves, rendering them golden and sparkling. (page 41)
I lose my grip on time. (page 58)
“I’ve brought you a patient.”
“You’re playing solitaire.”
“I’m at a very tricky point.” (page 131)
“...One day my brother had the perfect life, a family, a beautiful daughter, and the next, all of them were gone. Ashes and cinders. It makes you wonder why we ever believe in tomorrow, why we assume we have the next minute, and the next, and the next.” (page 192)
“The ice can’t claim me. It can’t make me shiver. But Oskar can, though I don’t think he realizes it.” (page 224)
“...The sight of you makes my heart speed. Do you really think the only magic in this world comes from fire and ice?” (page 319)
“Remember who you are. Realize what you are.” (page 362)
My Rating and Review: 3.5
It is with a heavy heart that I type this review. This is the first Sarah Fine book that I just...didn’t like. I know, shocking. I loved Sanctum and Of Metal and Wishes, but I just couldn’t get into this book.
Let me start at the beginning. I didn’t read the synopsis for this book. I saw that Sarah Fine had a new book and I instantly got it. I didn’t have to read the synopsis. It’s Sarah Fine. Pfft. It’s. Going. To. Be. Amazing.
Until it wasn’t.
It started off really well. Elli is a Saadella, a girl who becomes Queen or Valita, once the previous Valita dies. Elli is curious and fun, full of questions and passionate. When her Valita dies, the Valita’s magic is supposed to flow to Elli. Then, she will be able to rule the kingdom with that magic. Unfortunately, the magic for Elli, doesn’t come.
And I was like oooohhhh…. It’s about to go down.
In the Outlands, Elli starts to do things for herself and I loved the aspect of her life changing. She's becoming more independent and can do things she never thought she could. And, while she's getting to know the people in the Outlands she discovers that everything she thought she knew about them was false; her life in the temple while she was a Saadella was a facade. Loved that.
I also loved the romance between Oskar and Elli. It was slow and subtle. It wasn't all insta-lovey like most YA books. It took time for their attraction to one another to grow. I loved Fine's world building. I could definitely see the places she was describing and how things work with the Kapuri people. She's excellent at making a foreign place feel like home.
However, the things I didn't like were too great to give TIQ more than a 3.5. I just didn’t like the 'brimming war' aspect of the book. It all felt very generic and overdone. I cared more about Elli and her finding her new place in life than her saving the Kapuri people. Once I got mid-way I started skipping whole chunks of text because I wasn’t interested anymore, but I had to finish. I wasn't expecting the sudden turn this book took and it broke my heart, truly. I was so into the book and then I just...wasn’t anymore. I won’t spoil the end for you, but let’s just say, you’ve probably read it before.
And because it’s Sarah Fine, I can’t force myself to give her anything less than a 3. She’s amazing. Try another one of her books and see for yourself. Don’t make The Impostor Queen the first Fine novel you try.
Try Of Metal and Wishes. Review on my old blog here.
Buy Links: Amazon | B&N