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Crimson Reign

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For fans of Children of Blood and Bone and Six of Crows comes the thrilling conclusion to the Blood Heir trilogy. A princess with a dark secret must ally with a con man to liberate her empire from a reign of terror in this epic fantasy retelling of the Anastasia story. The Red Tigress, Ana Mikhailov, has returned to Cyrilia, but the country she once called home has fallen u For fans of Children of Blood and Bone and Six of Crows comes the thrilling conclusion to the Blood Heir trilogy. A princess with a dark secret must ally with a con man to liberate her empire from a reign of terror in this epic fantasy retelling of the Anastasia story. The Red Tigress, Ana Mikhailov, has returned to Cyrilia, but the country she once called home has fallen under a dark rule. Across the land, the Empress Morganya is tightening her grip on Affinites and non-Affinites alike. Ana dealt a blow to the Empress when she and her allies turned back Morganya's troops in Bregon, but she couldn't stop Morganya from gaining possession of the last remaining Bregonian siphon: a dangerous new weapon with the power to steal Affinities. Ana's forces are scattered, and her tenuous alliance with the Cyrilian rebel group, the Red Cloaks, is becoming more frayed by the day. What's worse, she's lost her Affinity to blood and without it, Ana barely knows who she is anymore--or if she has the strength to defeat Morganya. Morganya's reign of terror is close to crushing the nation Ana was born to rule. And now Ana will finally face the sinister empress, but will she survive? Will anyone? And will her Empire welcome her back to the throne, or turn her out to survive on her own. The Affinites and Non-Affinites of Cyrilia will determine Ana's future, if Morganya doesn't kill her first.


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For fans of Children of Blood and Bone and Six of Crows comes the thrilling conclusion to the Blood Heir trilogy. A princess with a dark secret must ally with a con man to liberate her empire from a reign of terror in this epic fantasy retelling of the Anastasia story. The Red Tigress, Ana Mikhailov, has returned to Cyrilia, but the country she once called home has fallen u For fans of Children of Blood and Bone and Six of Crows comes the thrilling conclusion to the Blood Heir trilogy. A princess with a dark secret must ally with a con man to liberate her empire from a reign of terror in this epic fantasy retelling of the Anastasia story. The Red Tigress, Ana Mikhailov, has returned to Cyrilia, but the country she once called home has fallen under a dark rule. Across the land, the Empress Morganya is tightening her grip on Affinites and non-Affinites alike. Ana dealt a blow to the Empress when she and her allies turned back Morganya's troops in Bregon, but she couldn't stop Morganya from gaining possession of the last remaining Bregonian siphon: a dangerous new weapon with the power to steal Affinities. Ana's forces are scattered, and her tenuous alliance with the Cyrilian rebel group, the Red Cloaks, is becoming more frayed by the day. What's worse, she's lost her Affinity to blood and without it, Ana barely knows who she is anymore--or if she has the strength to defeat Morganya. Morganya's reign of terror is close to crushing the nation Ana was born to rule. And now Ana will finally face the sinister empress, but will she survive? Will anyone? And will her Empire welcome her back to the throne, or turn her out to survive on her own. The Affinites and Non-Affinites of Cyrilia will determine Ana's future, if Morganya doesn't kill her first.

30 review for Crimson Reign

  1. 4 out of 5

    Lucie V.

    The era for the monarchy has come to an end. ✅ Russian inspired ✅ War and fighting ✅ Magic/powers ✅ Action ✅ Politics ✅ Fast-paced and engaging ✅ Characters ✅🆗 Romance ❗️❗️ Trigger warnings: deaths and war Strong 4 stars! I really enjoyed this very satisfying and full-of-action conclusion to the trilogy. The writing has improved since the first book too, making this book a solid finale. To create a future, one first had to destroy the past. This book starts off shortly after Red Ti The era for the monarchy has come to an end. ✅ Russian inspired ✅ War and fighting ✅ Magic/powers ✅ Action ✅ Politics ✅ Fast-paced and engaging ✅ Characters ✅🆗 Romance ❗️❗️ Trigger warnings: deaths and war Strong 4 stars! I really enjoyed this very satisfying and full-of-action conclusion to the trilogy. The writing has improved since the first book too, making this book a solid finale. To create a future, one first had to destroy the past. This book starts off shortly after Red Tigress ends. Ana is on her way to the Cyrilian Empire, Ramson stayed in Bregon to hunt Kerlan’s men and to find out if there is a way to destroy the siphons, and Linn and Kaïs are on their way to the Kemeiran Empire. Time is of the essence, as Ana and the Redcloaks are trying to unite their forces to stop Morganya before she gets her hands on a very powerful artifact that would give her almost unlimited powers. I was not sure if I would manage to really get into this book as I struggle to get invested when the main characters are apart from each other, but the pace was good and the plot was very engaging so I had no trouble finishing this whole book in one day even though the characters were not all together at first. “A government exists to serve its people, Ana. The people should not fear their government, it is the government that should fear its people.” Even though I was pretty sure of how this series would end, the path to get there was full of twists and turns, and many deaths. This book is all about the politics of the different nations, about the Redcloaks leading their revolution, and Ana and her friends trying to stop Morganya before she completely destroys all that’s good in the Empire of Cyrilia. I like how the Kemeiran Empire and the Kingdom of Bregon were also part of the war, they got involved even though it was not happening on their land, because they knew that Morganya’s crazy dictatorship would affect them sooner than later. Ana raised her arm. “For equality.” Linn, performing on a stage with shackles on her hands and feet. “For justice.” May, lifeless ocean-eyes staring up at the stars that she would never see again. “For the people.” Yuri’s restaurant ravaged to ruins; the Imperial Inquisition, marching through the streets of Goldwater port, burning down dachas and breaking apart families. At first, in Blood Heir, I was not the biggest fan of Ana. I found her rash and immature at times, but she really changed throughout her journey. She has grown into a mature, responsible, and selfless leader, willing to do whatever it takes to help and save her people. Ramson has never been one to feel guilt over his lies, so long as he got what he wanted. Ramson is a great character too. He is witty and sassy and made me smile a few times. He is very loyal, even though he pretends to be nothing more than a con man/businessman. In this book, we can see how he is willing to sacrifice much in order to save the ones he loves. He still has his swagger and sass though, but we can see that he gets more serious in this book as the stakes are definitely higher, and also because his feelings are involved too. It’s not just about business and Trades anymore, it’s about saving the woman he loves. “Hello, Witch.” There is a little bit of romance between Ana and Ramson (no surprise there, we all knew it was coming), and it was cute, but also very light. Romance is definitely not the central focus of this series, and it’s not even the central focus of the characters. Ana is willing to sacrifice her happiness and hide her feelings if it means winning the war and helping her people and I absolutely loved that. I loved that she remained rational and thought about the bigger picture and the greater good instead of just sacrificing everything to be with Ramson, as is sometimes the case in YA books. Linn was a Kemeiran windsailer. A fierce warrior. A free bird. She was the girl of wind and shadows. And today, she fought back. Linn is such a driven, resilient, and brave woman. I really love her, and I was SO HAPPY to have chapters in her point of view in this final book. She is inspiring, and I really love the ending that the author gave her since she still has a purpose. I couldn’t imagine Linn just being happy to spend the rest of her days quietly enjoying the warmth of a fire. She needs a mission, a purpose, she is so full of life and so determined to make the world a better place! It was heartwarming and inspiring to read her chapters. The other half to her song was across the clearing: carved like the statue of a god, hair ink-black under the moon, eyes lethal as blue flames. Kaïs is also a character that I grew to like very much, and his connection to Linn is so sweet and cute. It’s not really a romance, it’s really more of a soul-deep connection that they have that could end up in romantic feelings, but could also remain as they are and just make them awesome partners that can really trust each other. “If the world falls, the last thing I want is to know I could have fought and made a difference and chose not to.” On a side note, I am a little sad that Sorsha didn’t have a bigger role in this book. She is so unhinged and unpredictable, she added real tension because we could never know what she would do and how she would react. She was the villain that did not behave like the other villains. Overall, I really enjoyed reading this series, and I definitely recommend it for any fans of YA who are looking for Russian vibes, plotting and politics, magical abilities, revolution, and fighting. It also gets better with each book! Blood Heir ⭐⭐⭐.5 Red Tigress ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Follow me on Instagram 🙂

  2. 4 out of 5

    Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin

    I liked this series, but I’m going to trade in my hardbacks and buy the last two on kindle in a sale. The covers are so beautiful but I’m getting rid of a lot to keep favs etc, and not just books Happy Reading! Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾

  3. 4 out of 5

    ♠ TABI⁷ ♠

    oh hello cover!! look unless this truly is a big pile of steaming problems (I highly doubt it) I am going to defend this series until my last breath . . . and even then I'll do my best to be a ghost who's sole purpose in the afterlife is to defend books like this oh hello cover!! look unless this truly is a big pile of steaming problems (I highly doubt it) I am going to defend this series until my last breath . . . and even then I'll do my best to be a ghost who's sole purpose in the afterlife is to defend books like this

  4. 5 out of 5

    rose ★

    i’ve kept this series and these characters close to my heart for three years now. i’m not letting them go- i know this is a story i’ll return to time and again, as i already have. i love the beauty and the ugliness, the message, and the fragile hope that amelie wen zhao has gifted us all in this story. i cant wait for what she brings us next. <3

  5. 5 out of 5

    NAT.orious reads ☾

    Oh my gosh my poor little heart.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Tilly

    4.5 Stars What a fantastic ending to a well written, consistent and interesting fantasy series! I was so excited for this final installment and it definitely didn't let me down. I went into this final book remembering the bones of what happened in the second but not all the detail. Luckily the start of the book helped remind me of everything without giving an information dump. I don't want to talk too much about the storyline as this is a spoiler free review but I thoroughly enjoyed it and althou 4.5 Stars What a fantastic ending to a well written, consistent and interesting fantasy series! I was so excited for this final installment and it definitely didn't let me down. I went into this final book remembering the bones of what happened in the second but not all the detail. Luckily the start of the book helped remind me of everything without giving an information dump. I don't want to talk too much about the storyline as this is a spoiler free review but I thoroughly enjoyed it and although I pretty much knew how it would end, the twists and turns to get there were brilliant and had me gripped! As ever, I loved the use of magic in this series, it is so well thought out and the variety in the Affinites (people with magic) is very imaginative and interesting. The characters are my favourite thing about this series. Ana, our lead female, the heir to the throne who has blood magic. I have loved Ana's journey through this book, both physically and mentally. She has really grown as a person...although she still made me frustrated with her a few times in this book!! Our lead male is Ramson and oh how I adore him. He is such a wonderful guy with wit, a great personality and talent. He is also incredibly loyal and really takes care of those that he cares about. Our main side character is Linn and I loved having not only chapters in Ana and Ramson's points of view but also in Linns. She is SUCH a brave lady and I loved her friendship with Ana. Her part of the story was possibly my favourite in this book! The rest of the side characters played such amazing roles, I especially loved Kais and Daya (she added some much needed humour!). The writing was as brilliant as ever. Zhao is an amazing author and her way with words as well as her imagination has made for a truly brilliant series that I can't wait to read again and binge next time!! It took me no time at all to fall back into this world and enjoy every page of it! Overall, a near perfect ending to a great series. I cannot wait to see what Zhao releases next! I highly recommend the Blood Heir series to anyone that enjoys YA fantasy. Please note that I was gifted this ebook in exchange for an honest review.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Athena of Velaris

    “If the world falls, the last thing I want is to know I could have fought and made a difference and chose not to.” And so, the Blood Heir Trilogy comes to an end. I've been with these books since the beginning. I remember reading Blood Heir in a single afternoon, fully captivated by the cinematic writing and stellar characters. What makes these books different from the rest of YA is that the characters aren't necessarily good people. Some of them are moral, and they fight for the right reasons, b “If the world falls, the last thing I want is to know I could have fought and made a difference and chose not to.” And so, the Blood Heir Trilogy comes to an end. I've been with these books since the beginning. I remember reading Blood Heir in a single afternoon, fully captivated by the cinematic writing and stellar characters. What makes these books different from the rest of YA is that the characters aren't necessarily good people. Some of them are moral, and they fight for the right reasons, but often go about it the wrong way. Think Six of Crows, but instead of breaking into the Ice Court, the main characters are attempting to gain political allies and fight against a tyrannical empress, while simultaneously working to end human trafficking. Red Tigress flew by in much the same way, and to this day, it contains one of the best character ARC's in the series. “One sparrow's wingbeat can cause a storm.” Linn and Kaiis will always be the best in my mind, and watching Linn grow into the warrior she was meant to become was spectacular. Speaking of Linn, she was the best part of this book. With great character development, internal conflict, and a perfect balance between her romance and her own desires, Linn stole the show. Kaiis played even more of a supporting role in the final novel (sadly), and while I still loved his character, he just didn't feel as important to the plot as he was previously. “Humans will always fear the things they do not understand." Ana and Ramson were less enjoyable, which is odd considering they were the center of the storyline. My main issue came from the fact that Ana undermined her entire ARC from the first two books, and that no one really seemed to care about the emotional gravity of her situation. Ramson was more worried about a relationship than saving the world, yet he pushed Ana away at the oddest times. Ana too was cruel to Ramson for unexplained reasons, and their dynamic just didn't work. While I can understand Ana's new political ideology, I must admit that it didn't really fit with the world and the history that had already been created. “It is not the gods who live in this world: it is us, humans. And the good thing about humans is that we are mortal, that we can hurt and bleed and bear scars. That we can always make the choice to continue to live and continue to fight for good. I am but one human girl, but I will never stop fighting so long as I am alive.” The plot was good (no surprise there) and the fight scenes were excellent, as usual. With all the YA Adaptions currently taking place, I would rejoice if this series was picked up. It would make the perfect movie franchise because the pacing and scene structure really feels like you're watching a movie. Sadly, I was a little disappointed with this final novel. It wasn't bad, but it didn't live up to the earlier books in the series. I enjoyed reading it, but can't say that I will remember it, even though the first two books have stayed with me.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Grace

    The Blood Heir trilogy was phenomenal, and Crimson Reign was a perfect conclusion. I had chills pretty much constantly for the last 50-ish pages. Amélie Wen Zhao is, in my opinion, among the top three writers of YA (specifically on a sentence level), along with Tahereh Mafi and Melissa Albert. These three have the most beautiful writing that absolutely captures me the whole way through their stories. The writing in the Blood Heir trilogy is cinematic—in my mind’s eye, I see it as if it were a fi The Blood Heir trilogy was phenomenal, and Crimson Reign was a perfect conclusion. I had chills pretty much constantly for the last 50-ish pages. Amélie Wen Zhao is, in my opinion, among the top three writers of YA (specifically on a sentence level), along with Tahereh Mafi and Melissa Albert. These three have the most beautiful writing that absolutely captures me the whole way through their stories. The writing in the Blood Heir trilogy is cinematic—in my mind’s eye, I see it as if it were a film by the creators of The Witcher or Game of Thrones, that kind of dark cinematography. I would describe Blood Heir’s world as The Witcher meets the Grishaverse. And Ramson is a perfect blend of Kaz Brekker and Aaron Warner. I cannot recommend this series enough. An incredible high fantasy series with morally grey characters.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Maren Johnson

    This is a 4.5 star kind of book, but because I've enjoyed this series so much, I rounded up. Fight me out back later if you wanna complain about that. SO we have reached the end of the Blood Heir series, and we are all happier people for having read these books (if you haven't read them, this is your sign that it's time). Let's just quickly recap what I love about this book because I'm pretty sure you could already guess what this list will include: - RAMSON aka the loml - Ana. She's a little bit This is a 4.5 star kind of book, but because I've enjoyed this series so much, I rounded up. Fight me out back later if you wanna complain about that. SO we have reached the end of the Blood Heir series, and we are all happier people for having read these books (if you haven't read them, this is your sign that it's time). Let's just quickly recap what I love about this book because I'm pretty sure you could already guess what this list will include: - RAMSON aka the loml - Ana. She's a little bit of a pain sometimes, but at least she's consistent and always willing to put the common good over things like . . . well, Ramson. I can't relate, but I respect her for that all the same - Linn got to do a lot more in this book than she has in the past, and it was awesome - Ramson. You really didn't think he'd make the list only one time? - The fact the story was two bad butt women fighting two bad butt women villains. We're so here for all of these bad butt women and for having all female villains. There are enough books with a lot of men out there that it's refreshing to get to have some evil women and good women and all the women in between in this book - Sorsha is psycho, but she never gets old - Ramson. The only man in this series that matters - The conclusion is satisfying. You worried that the author will ruin everything you've hoped for and dreamed of? Don't. The ending is very nice, and you'll like it - We get to see so many settings. This book spans most of the world - Yuri returns. Okay, maybe there's a second man in this series that matters - Ramson, Ramson, Ramson - The Ramson and Ana angst. We've waited long enough - The Ramson and Ana romance. It's finally time for that to arrive. The thing is . . . I believe it because the author has built it up for THREE BOOKS now, so when it comes, it feels authentic So... why no perfect score? Well, there was a lot more action than in the previous books, and action gets a little bit old sometimes. Also the plot went a little bit in circles/got a tad repetitive when you wish they'd just hurry up and wreck somebody. But this view could just be because it took me half my life to read this book 😂 Overall, I'm so very happy I read these books, and I'll be recommending them for ages. I'll also be rereading, of course, because I can't stay away from Ramson for too long.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Katja

    Love was a weakness, and dreams were for fools - and the end to both had finally come. This is it. The conclusion to the Blood Heir Trilogy. And what a conclusion it was. We are thrown right into the story again, starting where we left off in the second book. The pace is a fast one, with shifting the focus between Ana, Ramson and Linn. All three of them have their own journey, their own battle to fight. The characters drive the story, despite it being full of action from almost start to finish. Th Love was a weakness, and dreams were for fools - and the end to both had finally come. This is it. The conclusion to the Blood Heir Trilogy. And what a conclusion it was. We are thrown right into the story again, starting where we left off in the second book. The pace is a fast one, with shifting the focus between Ana, Ramson and Linn. All three of them have their own journey, their own battle to fight. The characters drive the story, despite it being full of action from almost start to finish. This story lives and breathes through its characters and the world created by Zhao, which is what I love the most about it. The writing, as before, is very fast paced and makes it easy to follow the story. It is just perfectly right for this story, and I love that we discover, even now, more of this world Zhao created. A wonderful ending to an entertaining book series.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Monogamist

    Many thanks to Random Things Tours for a copy of this book, the opinions below are my own. I followed Ana and Ramson from the start of this series and Crimson Reign, the last book of this trilogy, was one of my most awaited releases of this year. From page one, we are pushed into a whirlwind of action and plot twists that don’t offer a moment to breathe. A short recap of the events developed in book two is brilliantly provided within the story and dialogues so the reader doesn’t feel completely Many thanks to Random Things Tours for a copy of this book, the opinions below are my own. I followed Ana and Ramson from the start of this series and Crimson Reign, the last book of this trilogy, was one of my most awaited releases of this year. From page one, we are pushed into a whirlwind of action and plot twists that don’t offer a moment to breathe. A short recap of the events developed in book two is brilliantly provided within the story and dialogues so the reader doesn’t feel completely lost. I said this at the end of book two, but on the road of The Blood Heir Trilogy’s journey, I thought that Ramson was the best character of the story. His storyline is well-round and fully developed in every aspect, from his traumatic past to the present, his family heritage and negligent father, and his love for Ana. I felt Ana’s character became more flat through chapters, almost too simple and trope-y, while Ramson and even the side characters (Linn), were strong elements who carried the story to the end. And in particular, with this book, I could not accept how Ana treated Ramson, and there were times I couldn’t approve of their relationship anymore. Another character who I couldn’t enjoy was Morganya, she wasn’t the best villain, her motives weren’t fully clear and her dialogues sounded just too disconnected, but without a solid backstory. I’m still glad that the story had a solid conclusion and that at least we have a happy ending, which the writer made me doubt so many times along the way. I can’t say I enjoyed this one as much as I did the previous two, sometimes it felt repetitive and dragging. However, I can confidently say that Ramson will be forever in my heart, he was the real gem of this story. I would not be surprised if more story will come out of this world and I will ensure to look forward to reading Zhao’s future works.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Alex

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. 4.5 stars, rounding up because I cried a few times (two of which were near the end), and the ending is just full of hope and a continued sense of adventure. After Red Tigress, which I didn’t love as much as Blood Heir, I was a bit wary of how the conclusion to this trilogy would pan out. For me, at least, Crimson Reign was a satisfying conclusion to this series that wrapped up all the loose ends and felt really peaceful and warm, instilling a sense of hope and joy and just making me smile. I’m s 4.5 stars, rounding up because I cried a few times (two of which were near the end), and the ending is just full of hope and a continued sense of adventure. After Red Tigress, which I didn’t love as much as Blood Heir, I was a bit wary of how the conclusion to this trilogy would pan out. For me, at least, Crimson Reign was a satisfying conclusion to this series that wrapped up all the loose ends and felt really peaceful and warm, instilling a sense of hope and joy and just making me smile. I’m so happy to see Ramson and Ana get their HEA together; it’s been a long time coming (and considering the aggravation their angst caused me in book two that continued into this book, I was pleased to see Ramson become a complete Ana supporter in this book. I love Ramson so much. Even when Ana irritated me with her need to push Ramson away for fear of hurting him more with her likely death, Ramson stuck around and went after her to help her and save her so they could reach that happy ending.). I think Ramson and Linn made this book better than it would have been without them. Speaking of Linn, I loved getting to see more of her own journey, and her finding her purpose and drive to keep fighting for what’s good and to better the world warmed my heart. Linn’s been a solid character from the start, and while I’m the type of person who gets annoyed by the POV switches by chapter when one scene on one character’s end gets left on a bit of a cliffhanger because I just want to know what happens!, overall I really liked having her explore what it meant to be a Kemeiran in Cyrilia, at the hands of Affinite traffickers, who obtained her freedom and lived a hard life and doesn’t always feel as Kemeiran as she could be through no fault of her own (the immigrant/child of immigrant experience right there). I also loved that Linn’s character is the one Amélie Wen Zhao got to write who looks like her (and me as a Chinese American) and whose country of Kemeira is a strong nod to her home country. I loved the aspects of Chinese culture, the mentions of yin and yang, of the concept of yuan, the threads of fate, even respect of elders and such for all of the familiarity and embrace of her roots. And her relationship with Kaïs, the fact that it’s left open ended in terms of whether it’s platonic or romantic, all of it, I loved. The fact that they recognize each other as kindred spirits, warrior souls who haven’t always had the freedom and choices that they do in this final book. I loved what we got of Kaïs too, and I’m so happy he got to reunite with his mother. That made me a bit teary. I’m glad Shamaïra was okay in the end and that her fierce spirit hasn’t dimmed a bit. And she finally gets to go home. And Kaïs will get to visit, I’m sure. All the character deaths (minus the villains’, though I did pity Sorsha for having been made into this monster by their dad…) hurt me too. I wasn’t surprised Markov and Henryk died—honestly I was wondering how they hadn’t been discovered anyway; like when Ana asked them to stay behind to keep watch from inside the palace in the first book, I had some serious concerns. Turns out they were valid and completely warranted lol. I would’ve been shocked if Morganya hadn’t known they were loyal to Ana. It still made me sad, though, especially to know that Henryk suffered a really painful death. Oof. RIP Yuri and Seyin (although I hated him at times too lol. I want to know what he was going to say to Ana too before he died 😭 WHAT WAS IT AMÉLIE) and Narron (poor kid, he seemed like a cool guy. The best First Officer Ramson could’ve picked out. His death hurt.) and Markov and Henryk. And Luka and May from the first book. So many character deaths; what a brutal trilogy. The message through the trilogy has been consistent and much needed in the times we’re living in right now. One of hope, of courage, of the desire to do the right thing and be the good in the world; of kindness and strength and generosity, warmth and understanding and peace. A world in which everyone, regardless of different cultures and backgrounds and nationalities, can work together to live peacefully and ensure equality and make things better. The ending of Crimson Reign was really heartwarming in that regard, full of that hope and light. Ramson’s awe at seeing Affinites and non-Affinites getting along and coexisting peacefully, seeing that Ana had achieved her vision for the future, summed it up best. (Also I love that we got to conclude this series on Ramson’s POV. Witnessing all of this change happening in Cyrilia, his love for Ana, and seeing how much Ramson has grown and changed into a better person, now embodying all the good Ana believed he could be, makes my heart very happy.)

  13. 4 out of 5

    Lin Renee

    This book has everything I love. The plot is solid (with a message!) The characters are rich and thought out. The world is fully fleshed out and so enchanting. I want to live there forever but sadly I have followed the story to its end. There is even subtle romance, which I absolutely adore in a world where the characters getting together is so important. Let’s talk about that romance for a moment. I suppose it would be called a slow burn. Except this makes no secret that these characters want to This book has everything I love. The plot is solid (with a message!) The characters are rich and thought out. The world is fully fleshed out and so enchanting. I want to live there forever but sadly I have followed the story to its end. There is even subtle romance, which I absolutely adore in a world where the characters getting together is so important. Let’s talk about that romance for a moment. I suppose it would be called a slow burn. Except this makes no secret that these characters want to be together from the start. They have had two other novels to fall in love with each other but in this one it was all put on the back burner for the greater good. There were so many times this made me want to scream but I appreciate it so much. I loved the subtly of it. I loved the little bit of drama it created. I hated the way it made my heart break but I wouldn’t change that for anything. Now onto the world! We got to see a lot more of this world in this one and we learned more about the places we didn’t get to go to. This world has history. It has distinct cultures with different ways of thinking. While it did have things such as similar stories about the heart that is forgiven because different cultures in our own world have their own stories for the start of the world. I absolutely loved the little nods to things that tied to countries together. It made the world seem more realistic and vibrant. All the characters are unique and shaped by their own unique culture and life. Bringing these characters together made for some of the best dialog I have ever had the pleasure of reading. It brought tears to my eyes as these characters bonded to each other as not merely friends but their own created family. They made me laugh; they made me cry; they made me feel like I was a part of their group. I cannot say enough good things about this book and if I don’t stop I’m going to start rambling so I will say this: if you’re thinking about reading this but aren’t sure start with Blood Heir and read them all.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Brittany

    Many thanks to NetGalley for the ARC! If it has been a minute since you've finished Blood Heir and Red Tigress, feel free to dive right in Crimson Reign when it releases in March. All the important information is woven naturally into the story without info-dumping. Prepare for bloody battles, angst, beautiful writing, chills from page-turning events, and an ending leaving you in a satisfied book-hangover. I'll miss the atmosphere, characters, and world so much. A wonderful fantasy retelling of An Many thanks to NetGalley for the ARC! If it has been a minute since you've finished Blood Heir and Red Tigress, feel free to dive right in Crimson Reign when it releases in March. All the important information is woven naturally into the story without info-dumping. Prepare for bloody battles, angst, beautiful writing, chills from page-turning events, and an ending leaving you in a satisfied book-hangover. I'll miss the atmosphere, characters, and world so much. A wonderful fantasy retelling of Anastasia.

  15. 5 out of 5

    fatima✨

    I'm READY to go through the pain, Crimson Reign's going to be the last book where I'll see my fav princess and con-man :'( I'm READY to go through the pain, Crimson Reign's going to be the last book where I'll see my fav princess and con-man :'(

  16. 4 out of 5

    ashley s

    2.5 rounding up. I just felt like this one was so flat. The stakes were the same the entire time. I felt like I kept reading the same scenes over and over. I think too much was squeezed into one book so I never had the chance to sit with anything that happened. The whiplash of Ana and Ramson at the end felt needlessly dramatic and didn’t do it for me— and I LOVE angst. Anyway, wanted to like this one but just didn’t really get into it.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Mere

    RTC closer to publication.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Nicole Sweeney

    Crimson Reign is the third and final installment in Amelie Wen Zhao’s heart pounding Blood Heir trilogy. Continuing where things left off in Red Tigress, Ana has returned to Cyrilia, fresh from fighting back Morgana’s troops in Bregon. Morgana is determined to solidify her rule and spread fear through Ana’s country. With her troops scattered is she strong enough to stop her? The Blood Heir trilogy is a brilliant example of a compelling YA fantasy series. There’s something for everyone and each bo Crimson Reign is the third and final installment in Amelie Wen Zhao’s heart pounding Blood Heir trilogy. Continuing where things left off in Red Tigress, Ana has returned to Cyrilia, fresh from fighting back Morgana’s troops in Bregon. Morgana is determined to solidify her rule and spread fear through Ana’s country. With her troops scattered is she strong enough to stop her? The Blood Heir trilogy is a brilliant example of a compelling YA fantasy series. There’s something for everyone and each book in the series has gone from strength to strength. Crimson Reign is probably my favourite of the trilogy and Zhao does a brilliant job of rounding things off and bringing the story to a satisfying conclusion. Like the previous installments, Crimson Reign is pretty fast-paced and I raced through it. The world is really intriguing and I love seeing the different affinite abilities. There is of course plenty of action and battle scenes and there were more than a few moments I was on the edge of my seat. I really enjoyed Zhao’s writing style and I’m really looking forward to reading more from this author. My favourite thing about this series has to be the characters. If you like plenty of banter between your main characters this series has you covered. Ana is a compelling protagonist, trying to make the right decisions for her people. Ramson very much steals the show but I also really liked Linn and the rather terrifying Sorsha. Crimson Reign is a highly addictive fantasy tale and if you’ve read the first two books in this series then this is definitely a must-read. If you haven’t picked up Blood Heir yet this is the perfect series to binge read.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    This was a fitting finale, filled with action and intrigue.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Tara

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Finished: 3/19/22 "No one is born a monster, we become monsters because of our choices" This was the last book in the Blood Heir trilogy and I loved it. I loved that this book picked up not too long after the last ended, just like the last picked up soon after the first’s ending. I loved how it jumped right into the action. There were so many explosions and so much chaos that I loved it. It surprised me that when Ramson was talking with Scholar Ardonn, Ardonn made things light on fire and explode. Finished: 3/19/22 "No one is born a monster, we become monsters because of our choices" This was the last book in the Blood Heir trilogy and I loved it. I loved that this book picked up not too long after the last ended, just like the last picked up soon after the first’s ending. I loved how it jumped right into the action. There were so many explosions and so much chaos that I loved it. It surprised me that when Ramson was talking with Scholar Ardonn, Ardonn made things light on fire and explode. I loved that Linn is so glad to be going home. I was so happy for her, especially after eight years away. I was shocked when a ship sent a distress signal, a ship from Kimera, and when Linn and those with her went to help, they realized a fleet from Cyrilia attacked it. And then their ship exploded. I adored that Kais saved Linn though; I loved that they were getting closer to each other. I was so mad after Ana’s ship blew up and she was captured and taken to Morganya. I wasn't surprised that Morganya wanted to be like a god and control who has power and who doesn't. She’s crazy enough for that. It was sad when Markov was under Morganya’s control. I hated when Ana had to deal with Sadov and his abilities again. But I loved how Ana still thought of Luka and what he had told her. I was glad that Morganya’s powers didn't work on Ana, but I hated that because of it she threatened Ana with hurting Markov. When Morganya killed Markov, I was so angry. After that, I hated her even more. I hated it, how Morganya let Sadov torment Ana, as if he hadn't tormented her enough when she was younger. I was annoyed that Ramson couldn't get anything out of Ardonn, but he was hoping someone in Bregon could. I loved that the courts in Bregon were being remade and including Magen/Affinites and how the people were voting on them for in elections. I loved that Darias was trying something that his ancestors never did. I was shocked when, as they were interrogating Ardonn, he was offered a peaceful place to live if he just told them about the siphons but unfortunately, Kerlan had poisoned his scholars and with him gone Ardonn might not have long to live, so he was not cooperating. But then Darias offered a quick death with a seaside view, or a painful death with torture. I was glad that they were told that there was a possibility of destroying the siphons, since Blackstone and Searock could be destroyed and that the power could be returned since, during the trials, it happened when siphons broke. And those who had their powers taken and never returned to them ended up dead. I was worried and hoped Ramson could save Ana from that fate. I loved Linn flying over her homeland but then she got distracted and ended up crashing, unfortunately. But I loved her being so happy in that moment. I was glad that Henrik wasn't under Morganya’s control and wanted to help Ana and get her out. I loved that Shamaira was able to break free and warn Ana of Morganya’s plan to get the Deities’ Heart and about Sorsha going to be in Salskov in 17 days. I really hated how once again Ana had to deal with Sadov and his horrors, poor girl had suffered so much at his hand. I was shocked when the room Ana was in exploded but a boy and a girl saved her and they were part of the Red Cloaks. I wasn't too surprised that Yuri wanted to kill Ana but he listened to Seyin too much. But I loved how Lilliya stopped him from doing so. I did like that the Red Cloaks were freeing the prisoners from the cells. I liked then, the Temple Master, Linn met who healed her Arm and leg for her. I wasn't too surprised to learn that, thanks to Morganya, the Cyrilians were there for information and that they ransacked a bookhouse and kidnapped the Temple Masters, for knowledge. I liked that Ana informed Yuri of what was happening so he knew what was happening but I was worried it would go badly. I did love how at the camp they referred to yaegers as provyod, which means guide, which fits better. I loved that Ana thought so too, much better than yaeger which meant hunter. I loved how the camp was making Ana realize that it was like the world she wanted to create, where Affinites and Non-Affinites could coexist in peace. I was so mad that the Cyrilian soldiers killed Gen but I was glad Kais showed up and could save Linn. I liked that Linn and Kais decided to go after the Heart of the Gods to stop Morganya and help their friends. I was surprised Ramson ran into some sirens, but not surprised Olyusha showed up and wasn't very happy with Ramson, but she did help him save Ardonn to find out about the siphons and about what happened to Bogdan. I was annoyed when Ana had to deal with that jerk Seyin again. I didn't like how rude he was. Even if he had a problem with how things had been run, he had no right to be so rude. I was glad when Ramson ran into Daya again and was very happy that she was alive. I hated when Sorsha showed up and was taunting Ana and Yuri and the Red Cloaks and was killing their people, just because she had powers and could. I was so pissed when Sorsha was using Ana's Blood Affinity on them and how they so had to stop her from getting to the gates and to Morganya. I did feel worried for Yuri when he was using too much of his Affinity. I might have had my issues with him, but I did worry. I did love that despite all their problems, Ana saved Yuri from one of Sorsha’s spikes. I loved how Ana realized that she had to destroy the legacy left by her family if she wants to save her people and create a better world. I was happy when Ramson saved Ana but it pissed me off when Sorsha stabbed Ana, but Ramson struck back against his half-sister. I liked that Sorsha might not have been too familiar with her abilities yet, so it could be used against her, in hopes that she would make a mistake. I felt a bit bad that I was glad when Ramson killed her, but I also was glad they no longer would have to deal with her. I loved Linn being badass and fighting against those who Morganya sent. I also loved how the people in the bookhouse were fighting, too. I was shocked when Linn was fighting that Sight Affinite who was messing with her eyes, making it hard for her to fight him. I was so annoyed when Linn went after the people who took the book, but it ended up being the wrong people. I loved that she and Kais were reunited, but he was hurt. I was glad Ramson’s men were helping him and a healer was saving him. I also was glad that Tetsyev was there helping Ana. I loved that Ana and Ramson finally had a passionate moment. I was so proud of Linn for standing up to the Temple Masters, trying to get them to help her. I was glad that Linn was able to learn how to save Ana, her having to destroy the vessel that holds Ana’s Affinity with Ana close by or it would just vanish into the grand flow of energy but Linn had to hurry as Ana was dying. I was glad that Linn got a map to the Heart and could stop Morganya and save Ana. I loved how Ramson finally opened up to Ana about Jonah and why Ramson left Bregon. I was so annoyed and a little mad that Ana was pulling away from Ramson, like I get it, she’s worried she’ll die but it still was painful. I was a little surprised when Tetsyev admitted he loved Morganya but she had turned into a monster. I was so irritated when Seyin attacked because he thought Yuri was a prisoner but he was informed otherwise. I felt so bad for Ana and was worried since she wasn't doing too good thanks to not having her Affinity. I loved how Ana and the others went to the people, trying to get help, and ended up getting help from Southern Cyrilia in the fight against Morganya. I was worried when they went to attack the castle, but I loved meeting Marya, she was adorable and really powerful with an Ice Affinity, even as a little girl. I loved how she reminded Ramson of May. I loved how Linn saved them from the young Inquisitor and told him they weren't enemies. I loved how Ramson wanted Linn to take Ana and get to the Heart and get Ana her Affinity back.I was so glad that Bregon came to help them and that Kais showed up. I was beyond annoyed when Seyin thought Ana hurt Yuri when she was trying to help him after the fact. I did like that despite his crappy behavior Ana still tried to help Seyin. I was so shocked when Ana came across the dead council members in the palace. But not just them but also Lieutenant Henryk, who told her that Morganya and some Inquisitors went to find the Deities’ Heart in the Silent Sea. I was a little sad when Ramson admitted he loved Ana, but she didn’t tell him she loved him, because she didn’t want to hurt him if she died. I was a little surprised and annoyed that Ramson couldn't return to the Blue Fort, and if he did, he would most likely be tried for treason. I was so happy when Kais and Shamaira reunited after so many years apart. I almost cried. I wasn't surprised when Ramson found out that Ana was going after Morganya. I loved that Tetsyev helped Ana with Sadov and that Ana was able to kill him, but it did make me sad that Sadov was able to kill Tetsyev before he died. I loved how forces from Kemeira came and helped them. I adored that Linn’s Wind Master brought her chi, and that Linn was flying. It made me so happy. When Morganya got the heart and tried to rid Ana of her siphon and her Affinity. But unfortunately for Morganya, Ana got her Blood Affinity back. I was relieved when Ana killed Morganya, so she didn't have to deal with the horrors she was committing anymore and that Cyrilia was free of her. I loved how when Ana was returning the Heart she could feel all the life of all those of alchemical abilities through it. I loved how she saw May, Yuri, and Luka and all those she loved who died. It was a really beautiful moment. I loved that Ramson was coming for Ana, it made me so happy. But then he nearly drowned, but then Daya saved him, again. I loved the ending so much. I loved that the palace was turned into a school for Affinites to teach them how to use their Affinity. It made me so happy. I loved that Cyrilia was turned into a Republic and others now had a say in how things were run. I was glad that it was made so people couldn't mine Blackstone or sea-rock. I was a little sad that Ana was abdicating the throne, but I knew she wanted what was best for her people and she thought the new system was it. I loved that there was a graveyard for those who had died in the fighting. I loved when Ana visited her family’s tomb. And there was a trellis with winter bells, just like the one in Shamaira’s garden for May. I loved that Linn was offered the title of Wind Warrior, which was only given to someone who had completed their training and was high ranking, and it's a great honor. But Linn wanted to help those who are like her, trafficked. I almost cried when Linn was reunited with her mother, finally. I loved that Ramson was going to be hunting down traffickers and traders with the backing of several kingdoms like Cyrilia and Bregon and maybe others. And Ana is going with Ramson and Daya. I loved this book so much.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Desiree

    A fantastic ending to the trilogy!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Roz

    5 ⭐️ I LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS BOOK!! This trilogy!! You know when someone says they wish to go back and read something for the first time? For me it’s this trilogy. I will read it over and over again and never get tired of it. If I was stranded on an island and can only take 3 books with me, I would choose this trilogy. My absolute favorite, I love it so much. The characters/ the character development! The PLOT! THE ROMANCE!! Everything about this is amazing and especially the ending. Perfection, d 5 ⭐️ I LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS BOOK!! This trilogy!! You know when someone says they wish to go back and read something for the first time? For me it’s this trilogy. I will read it over and over again and never get tired of it. If I was stranded on an island and can only take 3 books with me, I would choose this trilogy. My absolute favorite, I love it so much. The characters/ the character development! The PLOT! THE ROMANCE!! Everything about this is amazing and especially the ending. Perfection, definitely read this!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Christine L.

    I'll give a more detailed review later, I think! Really cool cover, and (spoiler ending): (view spoiler)[ loved that Ransom and Ana get a happy ending! Admittedly, it was a bit predictable due to the whole revolutionary aspect; it's reminiscent of early YA dystopia in that sense. I think after this I will have to find more fantasy where a princess doesn't have to give up her title to win a revolution to see how it would play out. (hide spoiler)] Personally, I find that this series has a lot mor I'll give a more detailed review later, I think! Really cool cover, and (spoiler ending): (view spoiler)[ loved that Ransom and Ana get a happy ending! Admittedly, it was a bit predictable due to the whole revolutionary aspect; it's reminiscent of early YA dystopia in that sense. I think after this I will have to find more fantasy where a princess doesn't have to give up her title to win a revolution to see how it would play out. (hide spoiler)] Personally, I find that this series has a lot more hope than Shadow & Bone, and really enjoyed Zhao's writing.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Jenna D.

    A thrilling, edge-of-your-seat, battle-filled, and political end to the trilogy! The writing is, at times, a bit repetitive, and so are the wounds incurred repeatedly by the characters in battle, but these things did not deter from my enjoyment of the book. Every step leads up to the incredible climatic end, and I can’t help but feel satisfied with the roles each character played, as well as the manner in which we bid them farewell. I’m so glad I read this very nicely crafted tale.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Vivianne

    Blood Heir: 3.75 stars Red Tigress: 3.5 stars Crimson Reign: 3 stars Overall this was an enjoyable read. It was just… predictable and cliché and that made it a bit boring. I wasn’t compelled to keep reading. The plot was just kind of flat and I never felt an urge of tension. I did enjoy the characters, the writing was okay and the world was entertaining hence the three stars. However nothing really stood out in this book from any other YA book I’ve read and it isn’t rememberable enough. For a conclu Blood Heir: 3.75 stars Red Tigress: 3.5 stars Crimson Reign: 3 stars Overall this was an enjoyable read. It was just… predictable and cliché and that made it a bit boring. I wasn’t compelled to keep reading. The plot was just kind of flat and I never felt an urge of tension. I did enjoy the characters, the writing was okay and the world was entertaining hence the three stars. However nothing really stood out in this book from any other YA book I’ve read and it isn’t rememberable enough. For a conclusion of such a popular YA book series I'm very disappointed and underwhelmed.

  26. 5 out of 5

    thewoollygeek (tea, cake, crochet & books)

    I was so excited to read this and also dreading it too, I have loved the first two books in the trilogy and I don’t want it to be over. This book is everything, I admit I am a little bit in love with Ramson, I loved his character more than Ana’s (not that she isn’t great herself) he just is so loyal to Ana and he has such a big personality and I love his sense of humour. Speaking of Ana and Ramson, you can’t really not touch on the romance , it takes a back seat in this book, for the good of eve I was so excited to read this and also dreading it too, I have loved the first two books in the trilogy and I don’t want it to be over. This book is everything, I admit I am a little bit in love with Ramson, I loved his character more than Ana’s (not that she isn’t great herself) he just is so loyal to Ana and he has such a big personality and I love his sense of humour. Speaking of Ana and Ramson, you can’t really not touch on the romance , it takes a back seat in this book, for the good of everyone else beyond themselves. Which I completely understood and it has to be this way but does mean I didn’t hate it or that my heart was breaking a little at times. Not that this was the only time in these books I’ve been emotional , these characters and their friendships, how they bonded over the course of this series often brought a tear to my eyes, but they made me laugh and cheer them on too. I loved that in this book we got to see so much more of the world. It reveals so much more of the distinct cultures portrayedadi particularly enjoyed the fact it made the world seem more realistic and three dimensional. This world so full of magic, fantastic characters and the most fantastic plot, just kept me guessing all the way, there were so many twists and turns. As expected there is an ultimate climatic battle , simply put this is a spectacular ending to a series I am really going to miss and I am contemplating a re-read from the beginning already. Thanks to @randomttours and @harpervoyageuk for a free copy in return for an honest opinion. All opinions expressed are my own and freely given.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Ayushi (bookwormbullet)

    RamsonAna my loves 😩 I'm gonna miss them sm 🥺 I can't believe this trilogy is over Follow me on TikTok | Instagram | Twitter for more book reviews & recommendations! RamsonAna my loves 😩 I'm gonna miss them sm 🥺 I can't believe this trilogy is over Follow me on TikTok | Instagram | Twitter for more book reviews & recommendations!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Manu ✦★✦

    I can't waitttttt. I need this now Also... I'm the only one that thinks the purple cover is kinda weird??? I can't waitttttt. I need this now Also... I'm the only one that thinks the purple cover is kinda weird???

  29. 4 out of 5

    【Afi】 (WhatAfiReads)

    "To create a future, one first had to destroy the past." The end of the monarchy and the end of a series! It always saddens me when I finished a series, as we have fought along with the characters, experiencing their character growth and their fight finally coming to an end. I would say Crimson Reign was great in a sense that it concluded and wrapped up everything swiftly. From the issues, to the political play and also the romance. Unfortunately, for me, there were a few things that just mad "To create a future, one first had to destroy the past." The end of the monarchy and the end of a series! It always saddens me when I finished a series, as we have fought along with the characters, experiencing their character growth and their fight finally coming to an end. I would say Crimson Reign was great in a sense that it concluded and wrapped up everything swiftly. From the issues, to the political play and also the romance. Unfortunately, for me, there were a few things that just made me a tad disappointed in how the book turned out, as it is the last book to the series. Its not bad but its not entirely good, so I would say that the final book to this series was just an OKAY read for me. Personal Ratings : 3.65🌟 The end of the series means the end of our MC journey. As per the first and second book, told in multiple POV's, we follow Ana, Ramson and Linn into their last adventure into taking over the crown. A story of relationships of nature and magic, the fight for power and the fight for equality. Personal Thoughts Don't get me wrong, I actually enjoyed 75% portion of the book. It was thick, in a way that I like. It tied every loose ends properly and it was concluded well. With Zhao, I loved how she writes the Politics in her books. I liked that the dedication and the motivation of the characters are not because of love but because of the greater good. The author was very consistent in this part of her writing, in which the power play, the fight for equality and the topic of injustice and slavery is one that came to light, in which made the story so intriguing. The Plot for me was done well and the flow of the story , in which the transitions from each character's POV was quite well done as well. Unfortunately, despite loving the characters, especially Ana and Ramson in the first book and loving their chemistry, their romance, just, felt..... off. Character wise , I would say Linn had the biggest character progression and her love interest was the best one to read (despite it being very minuscule and the side love story), then Ramson's and Ana's. I kinda felt that Ramson was somehow... out of character? I don't know if it was the pacing of the author wanted to somehow made the connection happened, but when it did...... I didn't feel as happy as I thought it would. In fact, it felt, just very.... cringey and awkward in a sense. I kind of understand why Ramson is acting the way he is , in a sense that he had never fell in love and the only love that he knew was of loving Ana, but Ana's reaction; felt , very, childish to me. It threw me off towards the second half of the book. Another thing that I felt was a bit of a missed opportunity was in how the author killed of her characters. I personally don't mind characters being killed off, as it adds depth and emotions to the plot of the story, but it just felt rushed and unrefined. It made me mad that the scenes were somehow cut off just like that WITH EVERY PERSON THAT DIED. It was okay with some characters, but there was one very important character, and his death, felt, unfair and just swept off really fast. Its understandable but maybe it was how it was written that made it portrayed as such. But, even with all of that, I had still enjoyed the book and the series overall. It does have it flaws and it may not be the best fantasy series out there, I would say, its not a bad one either. I think I enjoyed the second book the most out of the three books in the series, but would also recommend this book for beginners. The magic system is unique and it will be a good start if you're looking into reading a fantasy book. Thank you to Times Reads for generously providing me this gorgeous copy of the book. Disclaimers: All my reviews are my thoughts of the book and according to my personal preferences. Even though I had received a review copy, it does not affect my review and honest thoughts for the book.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Zoë

    Concise Thoughts "The history of empires and kingdoms was of conquest and bloodshed, of oppression and silence masked in unity and grandeur." -Amélie Wen Zhao, Crimson Reign Crimson Reign is the captivating, epic finale to the wonderfully written, YA fantasy, Blood Heir Trilogy, set in a world where some people have magical powers and are fighting for their freedom, creating interesting relationship dynamics, great character development, a fast moving plot, and some romance. Crimson Reign is more Concise Thoughts "The history of empires and kingdoms was of conquest and bloodshed, of oppression and silence masked in unity and grandeur." -Amélie Wen Zhao, Crimson Reign Crimson Reign is the captivating, epic finale to the wonderfully written, YA fantasy, Blood Heir Trilogy, set in a world where some people have magical powers and are fighting for their freedom, creating interesting relationship dynamics, great character development, a fast moving plot, and some romance. Crimson Reign is more of all the characters' story, not just Ana's. Overall, I really enjoyed reading Crimson Reign and will be rereading this trilogy in the future. Detailed Thoughts Writing Style The first line perfectly pictured the opening scene, and was befitting of the title, Crimson Reign. "The moon was red tonight and the ocean looked like blood, glistening a deep, clear crimson." -Amélie Wen Zhao, Crimson Reign I really liked the way the settings were described and set up. The writing style was straight forward, offering a quick and easy read, while also being wonderfully written. "There was a feeling of malice to the way the wind shrieked, its distant echoes resembling wails in the night." -Amélie Wen Zhao, Crimson Reign "The cold immediately invaded their bones with a biting vengeance. They were in the ghost hours before dawn, the moon low in the sky, half-hidden behind clouds that filtered an eerie, colorless light unto the land."-Amélie Wen Zhao, Crimson Reign Plot The fast moving plot held my attention and smoothly moved the story along. Events happened in quick succession, almost to the point I felt I didn't get enough time with the characters and their challenging situations they had to overcome. Fighting For Freedom "All they need is a spark to set the tinder ablaze." -Amélie Wen Zhao, Crimson Reign Ana and her allies are trying to free an oppressed people from their oppressors, mainly her unhinged, power hungry aunt. While some are fighting oppression, some are also fighting for a change of government as well, and I enjoyed seeing how everything played out. I really liked how once again, it was discussed the consequences of people of power seeing something is wrong, and not doing anything about. "A government exists to serve its people, Ana. The people should not fear their government; it is the government that should fear its people." -Amélie Wen Zhao, Crimson Reign Perspective Crimson Reign is told in multiple perspectives. Though there is some intrigue, mainly the characters played 'cat and mouse'. It was fascinating to see how the characters planned to thwart one another. Characters There are several well rounded characters: protagonist(s), antagonistic(s), and supporting characters. Whether the role was main or supporting, the opinionated characters provided interesting and thought provoking conversations. Character Development There is great character development within Crimson Reign, reflecting everything that had happened over the course of the series. Ana's mindset has changed greatly over the course of the trilogy: Blood Heir, Red Tigress, and now Crimson Reign. Her past, her present, and the future she wants, has been shaped by what she has gone through, the legacy she wants to lead, and the different types relationships she has developed. I really liked how this was shown throughout the series. Whereas in Blood Heir and Red Tigress, Ana is wanting to take her rightful place as ruler over Cyrilia; However, in Crimson Reign, she questions her rightful place as ruler and the legacy itself. "What if the legacy in itself is a broken one?" -Amélie Wen Zhao, Crimson Reign Each character comes from a nation rich in its cultures and traditions. Those traditions, whether wonderful or distasteful, provide structure and reverence in society, but it bars the way when creating a better world for the people and events that are struggling and need help. I think Lin struggles the most with the battle of breaking the values and structure of her society and in doing so, contributes to the events of Crimson Reign in a powerful way. "Vows were forged of iron, unbendable and unbreakable even as the circumstances and the world shifted around them. Tradition and deference were carved of unyielding stone, unchanged throughout time." -Amélie Wen Zhao, Crimson Reign "And the good thing about humans is that we are mortal, that we can hurt and bleed and bear scars. That we can always make the choice to continue to live, and continue to fight for good. I am but one human girl, but I will never stop fighting so long as I am alive." -Amélie Wen Zhao, Crimson Reign Ramson's character has changed so much from where he used to only value his life, to him treasuring Ana, and her values, while also changing how he views his. Romance "How easy it was to be around him, to not need to fill silences with meaningless chatter, but instead, to find the meaning in the silences." -Amélie Wen Zhao, Crimson Reign Although I skipped scene any potentially steamy scene(s), I really liked the depictions and differences of how the characters thought about love, how each character tackled their thoughts about their feelings, and how each character showed their affection in different ways. Conclusion I liked the way the story ended; the ending pleasantly offered closure. Upon completion, I can say the Blood Heir Trilogy is a favorite of mine. I do wonder if there will be more to this world, and if not, if there will be more works by Amélie Wen Zhao.

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