Monday, August 12, 2019

ARC Review: Wild Savage Stars by Kristina Pérez

Title: Wild Savage Stars (Sweet Black Waves #2)
Author: Kristina Pérez
Publication Date: August 27, 2019

Publisher: Imprint
Pages: 384
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//I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review//
Inspired by the legend of Tristan and Iseult, Wild Savage Stars is the spellbinding sequel to Sweet Black Waves.

Branwen has a secret powerful enough to destroy two kingdoms.

Her ancient magic led to a terrible betrayal by both her best friend, the princess Essy, and her first love, Tristan. Now this same magic is changing Branwen. Adrift in a rival court, Branwen must hide the truth from the enemy king by protecting the lovers who broke her heart―and finds herself considering a darker path.

Not everyone wants the alliance with Branwen’s kingdom to succeed―peace is balanced on a knife’s edge, and her only chance may be to embrace the darkness within…

Last year I read Sweet Black Waves and was immediately pulled into the amazing world Kristina Pérez created. The retelling of Tristan and Iseult was unique and heartbreaking and I could not wait to dive back in, so of course I was thrilled when I received an early copy of Wild Savage Stars!

This story picks up immediately after Sweet Black Waves leaves off, with Branwen, Tristan, and Essy arriving in an enemy kingdom. Everything and everyone is a mess after the shocking ending of the first book and Branwen, despite knowing her role in Tristan and Essy's betrayal, cannot bring herself to move on.

I loved all most of the characters so much in the first book and was so utterly surprised when Essy and Tristan betrayed Branwen that this book was extra hard to read. I hated seeing Branwen at odds with both her cousin and Tristan, but I could completely understand why she felt the way that she did. Her desperation and pain was tangible throughout the book and I was rooting for her so hard to find a solution! I did find that, while I also sympathized with Tristan, I did not love him this time around (but maybe that's to be expected).

A new character, Ruan, is also introduced in this book. I had a lot of reservations about him at first, but really came to love him. It does create a bit of a love triangle situation, but it's one that absolutely works and I am here for it. King Marc was also a surprisingly great character!

Wild Savage Stars is full of political intrigue in addition to the fantasy and romance elements and I loved it! Politics can be hit or miss for me, but Kristina Pérez did a wonderful job of keeping my attention. I was constantly on the edge of my seat trying to guess what Branwen would do or what solutions she would come up with. She's the real queen here!

The ending of this book absolutely broke my soul! I don't know how I'm expected to make it another year until book three, but I guess I'll find a way. I can't say much more without spoilers, but if you enjoyed Sweet Black Waves you'll definitely want to get your hands on Wild Savage Stars immediately!