Titles: The Winner's Crime
Author: Marie Rutkoski
Published: March 5th 2013 by, Farrar Straus Giroux
Series: The Winner's Trilogy book #2
The engagement of Lady Kestrel to Valoria’s crown prince means one celebration after another. But to Kestrel it means living in a cage of her own making. As the wedding approaches, she aches to tell Arin the truth about her engagement... if she could only trust him. Yet can she even trust herself? For—unknown to Arin—Kestrel is becoming a skilled practitioner of deceit: an anonymous spy passing information to Herran, and close to uncovering a shocking secret.
As Arin enlists dangerous allies in the struggle to keep his country’s freedom, he can’t fight the suspicion that Kestrel knows more than she shows. In the end, it might not be a dagger in the dark that cuts him open, but the truth. And when that happens, Kestrel and Arin learn just how much their crimes will cost them.
The author had written yet another brilliant book and more so on the topic of impossible choices and broken hearts. And the lies! So many lies!!! Click here for my review on book 1
My opinion on Kestrel is the same as book 1. She is brilliant, smart, cunning and strong. The sacrificed she has made and has to make is enough for any person who root for her. The innocence of her from the first book is gone and she has now understood what world she’s living. If you want to make a change, things have to be kept secret.
I still love Arin and I love it that he’s the emotional one (not in the soppy, sad, crying kind of way) in the relationship. Poor guy is always receiving mixed messages. But he wants Kestrel so badly, it hurts! He’s been fed one lie after the other and whilst he is trying to keep the freedom of his country and make new alliances, he is still trying to understand Kestrel and her reasons. He can’t seem to keep away, even when he thinks she hates him.
The romance is definitely still there but the story does begin to focus more on the political dialogue and the treason. Compared to the first book, where the world was just centred on the two of them, book 2 opens up to involve wider factors that have played a part or will play a part on the entire world.
I also like Prince Verex and it’s nice to see a slow friendship develop between the two. They both love someone else who they just cannot have and they both share those feelings of loss.
The story is full of twists and takes one’s breath away, especially the ending where the lies have created a tragic event. It’s both heart breaking and not just between Kestrel and Arin but between someone who is even closer to her.