The Winner's Crime (The Winner's Trilogy) - Marie Rutkoski

Following your heart can be a crime
A royal wedding is what most girls dream about. It means one celebration after another: balls, fireworks, and revelry until dawn. But to Kestrel it means living in a cage of her own making. As the wedding approaches, she aches to tell Arin the truth about her engagement: that she agreed to marry the crown prince in exchange for Arin's freedom. But can Kestrel trust Arin? Can she even trust herself? For Kestrel is becoming very good at deception. She's working as a spy in the court. If caught, she'll be exposed as a traitor to her country. Yet she can't help searching for a way to change her ruthless world . . . and she is close to uncovering a shocking secret.
This dazzling follow-up to The Winner's Curse reveals the high price of dangerous lies and untrustworthy alliances. The truth will come out, and when it does, Kestrel and Arin will learn just how much their crimes will cost them.


This flowed seamlessly from the previous book, and as I predicted, it left me feeling very angry that I have to wait for the third and final installment. I need to know what happens noooow.


This book focused more on the politics of the society at the emperor's castle and on Kestrel figuring out ways to get around the emperor.


This book is very plot driven, and there is definitely more action than world development, which is a little disappointing because what world building we do see is very intriguing and leaves me wanting to know more. Rutkoski has quietly built an intriguing and captivating world that I want to know more about.


I enjoyed seeing the conflicts in Kestrel between her family and what she thinks is right, between her love and her allegiances. There is no right solution to many of her problems and it's understandably a struggle for her to accept this. I love seeing the scenarios she's put in and how she reacts--and how she bears through the consequences.


This series is still probably mainly a romance, but there was very little in this book which only makes me have more anticipation to see what happens in the next.


Definitely a good follow up to The Winner's Crime, this book was another solid read and I eagerly anticipate the third.