Review: The Wicked King (The Folk of the Air #2)

the wicked king cover

The Wicked King (The Folk of the Air #2) by Holly Black

Published: January 8th, 2019 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Genre: Fantasy | Fiction | Young Adult

Recommended to: those looking for an unpredictable and compelling fantasy

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About The Wicked King

You must be strong enough to strike and strike and strike again without tiring.

The first lesson is to make yourself strong.

After the jaw-dropping revelation that Oak is the heir to Faerie, Jude must keep her younger brother safe. To do so, she has bound the wicked king, Cardan, to her, and made herself the power behind the throne. Navigating the constantly shifting political alliances of Faerie would be difficult enough if Cardan were easy to control. But he does everything in his power to humiliate and undermine her even as his fascination with her remains undiminished.

When it becomes all too clear that someone close to Jude means to betray her, threatening her own life and the lives of everyone she loves, Jude must uncover the traitor and fight her own complicated feelings for Cardan to maintain control as a mortal in a Faerie world.

: ★★★★★

There are books so good that keep you up at night long after you’ve read them.

The Wicked King is one. It’s official. Holly Black is one of my fave authors now.

I went into this feeling confident that I would be able to guess even just a little of what would happen. Because yes, I accidentally read some spoilers — a few lines here and there. But apparently, it still wasn’t enough. I could never guess the way Holly Black is thinking and I admire her so much for it.

This series is like wine and it’s intoxicating. I want to drink every page over and over again.

Honestly, I’m at a loss for words after reading it. All I can come up with is that it’s perfect — deliciously breathtaking and fearlessly cruel.

the wicked king
via KookBookery on Tumblr

Is it entirely possible to love and hate a character at the same time? (Yes, I am looking at you, Cardan.) I am really awed by how Holly Black wrote her characters. They are each their own but you can never guess what they’re thinking. Everyone has their flaws and as frustrating as some of them were, you can never fully hate them (except you, Locke). Jude is still my favorite and as twisted as it sounds, she’s someone I wish to be — reckless and brave. Cardan is indeed a wicked king but beneath the mask of arrogance lies someone who just wants to be seen and appreciated. Madoc, although a murderer through and through, is not someone I could truly hate because of how he loves his daughters in his own way. Taryn made me want to slap her so many times but I also see where she is coming from and I can’t hate her for being so human. I like books that challenge me like this. I secretly enjoy the frustration.

Honestly, I want to hug this book and recommend this to everyone I know.

Because I can assure you, this is a book worth reading. You won’t be able to stop thinking about it. Right now, I have succumbed to combing Tumblr and Twitter for fan theories about what happened. There are endless questions with a hundred possible answers. Everything is not what it truly seems. As Holly Black said, “Remember, the wording is always important in Faerie”. And boy, did I want to analyze every word.

Please, I need answers and I want them now. Suddenly, November never seemed so far away.

“Power is much easier to acquire than it is to hold on to.”

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