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Saturday, 27 December 2014

Empty Shelf/Mad Reviewer #46 - The Traitor Queen, Trudi Canavan.

The last in the trilogy of "The Traitor Spy", The Traitor Queen is a fitting end to the reader's second glance into the world of Kyralia, Sachaka and beyond.

The underworld of the largely cooperative Thieves - as much as rival thieves can be cooperative - is broken. The underworld is now largely ruled by Skellin, the rogue magician, due to his supply of not only magic but roet. Cery, Gol and Anyi find what solace they can under the Guild with Lilia, a new black magician and novice, helping out where she can. Cery, Gol and Anyi know they can't stay there forever, though, and they figure out a way to try and lure Skellin to them in order to trap him.

Meanwhile, in Sachaka, Lorkin has returned from Traitors' Sanctuary. Predictably, he won't tell the Sachakan king anything, so Lorkin is thrown in prison until his tongue is loosened. Black Magician Sonea is sent to try and treat with the king - as a Black Magician, she is the only Kyralian whom the Ashaki might respect, though she is still a woman - and she brings Lord Regin along as her assistant - to whom she has also been softening and forgiving since his cruelty in their novice days.

The Traitors also reveal that they are finally ready to conquer Sachaka as their own and throw off the chains of slavery, something they have been aiming for, for a long time.

As a trilogy, I thought it was fairly enjoyable overall. Maybe I had too high expectations because the Black Magician trilogy was so fantastic, but each story in this trilogy - particularly this one - seemed a bit more flat and struggling. The Traitor Conquest seemed a bit too easy, even with the battle in Arvice at the end. I think I mainly kept going because of the characters and wanting to see how their stories end, but that was still mostly out of loyalty to the characters I first got to know in the Black Magician rather than this trilogy. There was just something missing that didn't draw me in as much. Still, the end of the book wrapped (most) things up well, with glimpses into further changes in the world of Kyralia in particular.

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