I finished reading The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski on Saturday night for an Around the World ARC Tour.
As a general’s daughter in a vast empire that revels in war and enslaves those it conquers, seventeen-year-
old Kestrel has two choices: she can join the military or get married. But Kestrel has other intentions.
One day, she is startled to find a kindred spirit in a young slave up for auction. Arin’s eyes seem to defy everything and everyone. Following her instinct, Kestrel buys him—with unexpected consequences. It’s not long before she has to hide her growing love for Arin.
But he, too, has a secret, and Kestrel quickly learns that the price she paid for a fellow human is much higher than she ever could have imagined.
Set in a richly imagined new world, The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski is a story of deadly games where everything is at stake, and the gamble is whether you will keep your head or lose your heart.
I wanted to love this book. I really did. Unfortunately, it was just okay for me.
I never really felt like I got to know the characters. Kestrel was just too cold and Arin seemed sketchy to me. I mean, I guess that he was supposed to be but I felt like Kestrel should have seen that too. Maybe it's because early on I knew what he was planning but still.
I never really got where their romance came from. Yes, they played a game. Woohoo. But I never really saw any flirting or anything. And then bam! They kissed in the carriage. It just wasn't believable to me. I read some reviews say this was more of a romance story but I didn't get that.
Also, all the war talk, strategizing and history lessons just made me zone out sometimes. I do admit that I got more into it towards the end though. But I was a little too late. I do think lots of people will love it though.
I gave this book a rating of 3/5.
*FTC Disclosure: I was given this book for free for an honest review as part of the Around the World Tours.