The Queen of Nothing was fantastic final book in The Folk of the Air trilogy. It was brilliant, fascinating, fast paced, flawlessly written YA fantasy. I buddy read this with Toni and we both loved this one more than previous books in series. And We need more Elfhame! (Toni’s words and I couldn’t help but use them)
The Queen of Nothing (The Folk of the Air #3) by Holly Black
Publication Date : November 19th 2019
Publisher : Hot Key Books
Genre : YA / Fantasy
Pages : 308
Previous Book in series –
After being pronounced Queen of Faerie and then abruptly exiled by the Wicked King Cardan, Jude finds herself unmoored, the queen of nothing. She spends her time with Vivi and Oak, watches her fair share of reality television, and does the odd job or two, including trying to convince a cannibalistic faerie from hunting her own in the mortal world.
When her twin sister Taryn shows up asking of a favor, Jude jumps at the chance to return to the Faerie world, even if it means facing Cardan, who she loves despite his betrayal.
When a dark curse is unveiled, Jude must become the first mortal Queen of Faerie and uncover how to break the curse, or risk upsetting the balance of the whole Faerie world.
The Queen of Nothing was amazing end to the The Folk of the Air trilogy that revolved around Jude coming back from her exile, finding the scheme of her father to get the crown, and being the true queen of Elfhame. The story was about scheming, deception, betrayal, curse, political intrigue, power game, family drama, and love.
The writing was perfectly gripping, addictive, vivid and pace was exactly like second book. Like previous books, the story was first person narrative from Jude’s perspective. It’s weird at the end of the series I’m wishing I had Cardan’s perspective because I absolutely loved him in this. Even without his perspective, I loved the way author showed what he felt and thought.
The plot was action-packed, perfectly tight, and full of surprise from the beginning. It started with Jude, exiled by Cardan spending her time with her Faerie sister and brother in human world, doing odd faerie jobs, and struggling with her emotions over betrayal and shame. When Taryn, her twin sister, visit her asking for a favor that required her returning back to the faerie world taking her place for the inquest, Jude jumps at the chance to return to Faerie world without thinking about consequences and when she returned, she found her home in even bigger danger than herself.
It was interesting to see how Cardan would react to Jude being back in Elfhame, why he exiled her, How Jude would face Cardan, what Madoc was planning, how she would save Cardan and Elfhame, and what that curse mentioned in the synopsis was about.
Characters were best part of the book. Author wrote both Jude and Cardan so cleverly. You feel for Jude and love her in the beginning and Cardan didn’t make good impression then there was change and development in second book that made them both complex, uncertain.. and in this, I so so loved Cardan and admire Jude. If you didn’t like Jude in previous books I bet you will love her as much as you love Cardan. It was amazing to see them both develop into perfect duo.
Jude was perfect throughout the book. I enjoyed reading her feelings towards Cardan, her shame and humiliation she felt, and her moping and anger in the beginning. It was amazing to see her relief on returning back to Elfhame. She was at home with constant danger, scheming and fighting for her position and as being queen. Her dilemma, helplessness, her feeling towards Cardan was so genuine. I admired her for so many things in this book – her fight with Grima Mog, trying to rescue a person who betrayed her, becoming stronger and stronger with each wound and most of all her decision about curse, the path she chose and why she chose it.
Cardan was lovely. Who could have thought he could be wise and clever along with being reckless and funny. It was great to see the difference between Cardan I read in first book and Cardan in this. I could understand why he was so cruel and wicked after meeting his mother properly. She was selfish and how she raised him was horrible. I loved him for taking Jude’s side, standing up for her, even went to rescue her (that was best moment). I absolutely admire him for his speech when Madoc arrived and what he did with crown. The way he announced Jude was the Queen was a bit antidramatic but I’m not complaining. All I want is another book in this series.
What surprised me most was side characters. I have thought so many different things about the death of Locke but not this. I wanted it to be something epic, by Jude, or at least a good chapter on it with bloody description… anything but this!! It was totally out of box. And what do I tell about Taryn. I never guessed she could do that. The girl was so in love, believed in it and now there was change of heart!! Also there was no hard feeling towards Jude! I just couldn’t believe it. I kept expecting her betrayal almost till the end of the book. It was just so shocking to see her change.
I was surprised to see Ghost again like that and his confession and guilt made his reappearance even more interesting and after hearing that again I wanted Locke’s death much more better. Madoc was crazy and frightening. I couldn’t have imagined what he did. He was so drunk in power that he didn’t even think before acting. His scheming and plot was brilliant but I loved how Cardan and Jude came up with counterattacks each time.
The relationship between Jude and Cardan was lovely. Their confession of love for each other was perfect. I could read it over and over and never get tired of it. I enjoyed all moments and conversations between Jude and Cardan. They are definitely going to be on one true pairing list. I also enjoyed complex family relationships in this. Seeing Jude and Madoc scheming against each other along with their feelings and dynamics, was just mindblowing. I also liked the development in relationships between sisters.
The world was another best part. It was great to read more about Court of Teeth, their schemes, and their side of world. I enjoyed seeing all low courts more in this and how they all played in the game between Jude and Madoc, and reading about how magic worked for Jude, legends or stories about serpent king, and prophecies, star predictions, and curses.
I couldn’t guess Cardan’s riddle for Jude’s exile. I didn’t even consider that a riddle. It was so simple and still it never crossed my mind. There were many such amazing twists and turns but best of all was in climax with what Cardan did with crown and how that changed whole game. I was terrified and heartbroken and so unsure where this will go, what enemies would plan, and what Jude would decide to do. End was so damn satisfying and perfectly written. Punishments was the best part of the end and of course their visit to human world, and that last line.
I’m so happy with this end, this final book, and in fact whole series. I’m going to miss this series, world, and its characters. We definitely need more Elfhame. I hope author decides to write spin-off series.
Overall, The Queen of Nothing was brilliant, fascinating, fast paced, flawlessly written YA fantasy with a mindblowing plot and characters.
I highly recommend this if you like,
royal politics and great scheming
lots of twists and turns
Curse and prophecy
Thank you for reading! Let’s chat…
What do you think about this book? Have you read this book or any book by author? Which is your most favorite trilogy?
Just in case you missed,,,
- The Wicked King by Holly Black – Book review
- The Cruel Prince by Holly Black – Book review
- Book Series review : Well Met series by Jen DeLuca
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