Book Review: The Shadow Queen (Ravenspire #1)

Posted August 22, 2016 by booksbeautyandcoffee in Book Reviews / 6 Comments

Book Review: The Shadow Queen (Ravenspire #1)Title: The Shadow Queen (Ravenspire, #1)
Author: C.J. Redwine
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Published: February 16th 2016
Pages: 387

Lorelai Diederich, crown princess and fugitive at large, has one mission: kill the wicked queen who took both the Ravenspire throne and the life of her father. To do that, Lorelai needs to use the one weapon she and Queen Irina have in common—magic. She’ll have to be stronger, faster, and more powerful than Irina, the most dangerous sorceress Ravenspire has ever seen.

In the neighboring kingdom of Eldr, when Prince Kol’s father and older brother are killed by an invading army of magic-wielding ogres, the second-born prince is suddenly given the responsibility of saving his kingdom. To do that, Kol needs magic—and the only way to get it is to make a deal with the queen of Ravenspire, promise to become her personal huntsman…and bring her Lorelai’s heart.

But Lorelai is nothing like Kol expected—beautiful, fierce, and unstoppable—and despite dark magic, Lorelai is drawn in by the passionate and troubled king. Fighting to stay one step ahead of the dragon huntsman—who she likes far more than she should—Lorelai does everything in her power to ruin the wicked queen. But Irina isn’t going down without a fight, and her final move may cost the princess the one thing she still has left to lose.

My Review

When I decided to finally start this book, I’d been in the middle of binge watching Once Upon A Time, which I’m totally addicted to, and decided I needed to read a Snow White retelling. I don’t think I’ve read one before, other than The Lunar Chronicles version in the last book, and while she isn’t my favorite princess, there’s so much potential for a retelling of her story to be amazing. And this one, was definitely amazing.

I literally didn’t sleep for nearly a full day because of this book….


I think my favorite thing of this book has to be not the plot, although that is a very close second, but it’s the romance. Now, hear me out, it’s not my favorite because it’s one of the main elements, in fact, this story doesn’t actually have all that much romance. At least I didn’t think so. I really think that the best part of the romance is that it didn’t happen super quickly, which is literally my biggest pet peeve when it comes to romance in YA and NA novels. This romance took so long to develop, but it gave us just enough that I was falling in love as well.

Oh, and did I mention there are dragons in this book? Not only are they dragons, but they’re dragon people. No, I haven’t lost my mind and made that up, it’s seriously a thing in this book. And it’s honestly amazing.


I know a lot of people on Goodreads are saying that this is more of a romance than it is a fantasy, but I just didn’t get the same vibes. To me, while there was a subtle build in the romance throughout, I didn’t find it to be overwhelming like other romance novels usually are.

The world building is probably last on my list of favorites, not because it wasn’t good enough, but it wasn’t overwhelmingly great. If that makes any sense… I felt like the book could have gone a lot more into detail and it would have been even better, but also that would have caused it to be longer and that’s probably why it didn’t.

I’m hoping we’ll get to see more of this world in the next books to come. I know that they’re technically all standalones, but it says that they’re all connected by adjoining kingdoms, so maybe we’ll get to learn more as we go through the series!

I hope everyone has a fantabulous day/evening/morning/whenever you’re reading this and happy reading!

My Rating

Four pumpkin cats

  • I knew I was going to love this review as soon as I saw River Song <3

    I'm glad that the romance in this one is subtle…I hate when there is an overwhelming romance in a book that is supposed to be fantasy, as it just ruins the entire thing for me. I don't mind romance in a book, but unless that's supposed to be the main plot, then it doesn't need to be so strong that it just takes over.

    Glad you liked this one! I have a copy of it and haven't read it yet, so glad to know there's lots to look forward to!

    • Olivia

      There is definitely tons to look forward to when you pick this one up! I can’t wait to hear your thoughts on it when you do read it!

  • I love this review and your River gif. I loved this book with a sickness and I can’t wait to see what comes next in this world.

    • Olivia

      Thank you! I know, I’m so excited to see what other characters we’ll be meeting with this series!

  • I agree! The romance was slow-burn and oh-so good! I love that it took it’s time. I’m so excited for the sequel. I also love the action so much and how badass she is. Lovey review! Btw, I love your blog!
    Genesis @ Latte Nights Reviews

    • Thank you so much!! I’m so excited to see where this world goes, especially since apparently each new book is going to be another retelling, but they all some how link together in the end!