Bookish friends are the best and even more so when they write books that you love. A really good friend of mine wrote her first book last year, Crown of Conspiracy, and I loved it. I’m a bad friend, because I still need to write that review, but that will change in the near future. The second book, Dance of Despair, came out at the end of February and it was so good.
This is a sequel, so I’ll do my best to give you all of my thoughts without any spoilers. I want you to be able to read the first book and experience all the feels before diving into this one. So let’s take a look at my review!
Real betrayal never comes from enemies.
When Shalitha’s life takes a dramatic, and dangerous turn for the worse, she must reconcile her new life with the old. Struggling to survive in a foreign country while adjusting to new rules and traditions, she longs for home. Alone, enslaved, and with nobody to trust, she sees no way out, until she meets an enigmatic stranger who makes it his mission to help her. But is he who he claims to be?
When the new tyrant queen of Ilvanna directs her focus at Talnovar, his will to survive is tested beyond compare. Facing his past is only the beginning. Abandoned by his friends, Tal has to push himself further and harder than ever to outsmart his enemy and honour the wishes of a dead queen. If that means relying on the help of his enemy, so be it.
Dance of Despair (The Ilvannian Chronicles #2) by Kara S. Weaver
Real betrayal never comes from enemies.
After reading Crown of Conspiracy, I was left wanting more and Dance of Despair was everything I needed and more. Make sure you have the time to read when you start this book, because you won’t want to put it down! Do remember to read Crown of Conspiracy first though, because these definitely aren’t standalones. That being said, I’ll be careful when it comes to talking about events in this book. I don’t want to spoil anyone.
Dance of Despair leaves off a little bit after the events at the ending of Crown of Conspiracy. I loved that there was a bit of time between the ending of the first book and the start of the second. It gives us time to reconnect with the characters and makes us curious to what they’ve been up to. We get more of a glimpse of the world Kara created and it just keeps getting better.
Shalitha is in a foreign country and a slave at the moment. She’s definitely not living the life she had in mind. That being said that hasn’t taken away any of her sass or willpower. Through it all, she’s still making a plan to get herself back home. There are many obstacles along the way, but Shalitha takes them as they go. Just when you think she’s going to break, she pulls out even more strength. She’s a fighter and I can’t wait to see how her journey continues.
“Love, when answered, is sweeter than ithri, more powerful than hate, and deadlier than any weapon known to our kind. Unanswered, it is as painful as having your heart ripped out and watch it beat and bleed until it shrivels into nothing.”
Talnovar is still one of my favorite characters. I don’t think I’ve read about a character with as much bad luck as this poor guy, haha. Every time I started thinking he had things on track, something would come back and haunt him. Even though he’s a fighter, Talnovar shows us everyone can only handle so much. That doesn’t stop him though. His love keeps him going and he’s definitely determined. I can’t say too much about what’s going on, because I don’t want to give too much away, but you’ll want to read about him.
Besides our two main characters, there is a cast of amazing side characters. Some nice and some just really evil, haha. If anything, Kara is evil. She’s not careful with her characters, that’s for sure! That fits this series really well though. After the second book I’m still not sure who to trust. Every time I thought I knew what was going on, something would happen to make me doubt what I thought.
All in all, Dance of Despair is an amazing sequel. The worldbuilding and characters are amazing. Add some politics and many twist and turns you don’t see coming, this book will leave you wanting more. Kara is evil, but she writes amazing books, haha!
Dance of Despair is a book I definitely won’t forget! I loved every minute of it and now I’m going to have to keep on bugging her until we get the third book, haha. If you’re looking for fantasy books that you just can’t put down, I really recommend The Ilvannian Chronicles. You won’t regret it! What was the last book that left you wanting more? Let me know in the comments!