1.5 out of 5 stars
The confusing things are too easy and the easy things are too confusing and I almost DNF’d this more than once.
I’m shocked the see I gave book two in this series a 3/5 rating – I must have been feeling bad for it. Getting motivated to read Frost Like Night was no easy feat; I picked it up and put it down ten times. Finally, feeling too invested in the series to surrender, I began.
Queen Meira of Winter has magic, as do the rulers of each kingdom: the seasons, which only have one season each, and the rhythms, which have all the seasons. A ruler can only use their magic to affect their subjects. Until bad, bad Angra, figures out how to use it on everyone. This is evil, so the magic turns evil, and becomes known as the Decay. (Which I can’t read without thinking of toothpaste.) Along the way, some important artifacts become unimportant, some rules stop being rules, and, for reasons unknown, the kingdom of Paisly has it all figured out. PAISLY.
“Hello, I’m Shannon, Queen of Gingham and you, dear subjects, are all my tiny checkmarks!” she said, in her benevolent ruler voice.
The magic in this series is unnecessarily confusing and dumb. You’d have to care a lot more than I did to follow how it works and changes. Frost Like Night‘s story is okay. It draws you along with the promise of a possibly epic, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade-style, only-the-worthy-shall-pass labyrinth at the end… which turns out to be SO EASY and HOLY DUH that you’d throw the book, but you’ve read 92% of it and might as well finish. (Then throw.) Remember when Meira collected the keys of the Order of the Lustrate in about a paragraph each? Here’s is the second time this series failed to deliver on what could have been a fantastic, treasure hunt-y sort of plot.
To add to the slog, each chapter is told from a different character’s point of view – and changes both tense and narrative mode. Meira is first-person, present tense, everyone else is third-person past. It’s like getting slapped in the face by a swinging saloon door.
Alas, no. I did not like this book, or this series. Let that be a lesson next time I feel compelled to finish something simply because I started it.