One of my favorite books from last year was Kingdom of the Wicked by Kerri Maniscalco (review here), so obviously, I was eagerly awaiting the second in the series, Kingdom of the Cursed. I've tried to keep this as spoiler free as I could, but still, heads up!
|Pub Date: 10-5-21|
New Adult - Fantasy
After her twin sister was brutally murdered, Emilia turned to the dark magic her grandmother always warned the witches about. In her grief, Emilia called forth Wrath, one of the seven Wicked princes of Hell. Though the pair butted heads at every turn, they forged a tentative alliance to get to the bottom of who was killing the witches of Italy. But when Wrath betrayed Emilia, she was left with no choice but to sell her soul and become the wife of Prince Pride, making her the Queen of the Wicked.
Nothing could've prepared Emilia for what she was about to encounter. She thought Hell would be full of fire and brimstone, not ice castles and backstabbing princes. She soon realizes that everything she's been taught to believe-- about the Wicked, about magic, even about herself--isn't as it seems, and that many secrets have been kept from her. To figure out what happened to her sister, Emilia will have to navigate scheming courts, centuries-old curses, and her desires if she hopes to find the answers she craves.
This was one of my most anticipated reads this year, and I'm happy to report it delivered! I found the writing style and story just as captivating and would have to force myself to put it down. I loved seeing Emilia grow into this powerful woman who wasn't afraid of her magic and one who would no longer tamp down her desires or what she was feeling to please others. Aside from her character growth, my favorite part of this was her relationship with Wrath. I just love these two so much. They have great banter, and the tension between them is always perfection. I kept hearing how spicy this book was, and while there were plenty of steamy scenes between them, it never felt too overwhelming, and actually, I was expecting more just given how much emphasis was on that fact. Despite everything I loved, I did have a few issues with it. The biggest being that I didn't feel like much happened until the last 100-150 pages, and I was left with more questions than answers. We did get some answers to Wrath's past (which I totally called), but Emilia's is still one big question mark. Even so, Maniscalco has such a way of crafting these vivid, compelling worlds that suck you in and leave you wanting more, and I'll be counting down the days until the third book because I can't wait to see what comes next.