Monday, February 15, 2016

The Princess of Trelian by Michelle Knudsen, 2012

Spoiler warning! This is the second book in the Trelian series, and there will likely be spoilers from Book One. Click here to check out my review of the first book in the series, The Dragon of Trelian.

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The hundred-year war with Kragnir is over, and Meg will soon be named the princess-heir of Trelian. But her connection to her dragon, Jakl, is making her parents’ subjects uneasy. Will they ever accept this dragon princess as their future queen? It doesn’t help that Meg is suffering horrible nightmares and sudden, uncontrollable rages—and with the link joining them, Jakl is feeling the rages, too. Meg is desperate to talk to Calen, to see if he can help her figure out what is happening and how to stop it before she or her dragon does something terrible…
Meanwhile, Calen is having troubles of his own. He’s far away, gone off with Mage Serek to receive his first true mage’s mark. But his marking ceremony is disrupted by a mysterious magical attack, and ominous prophecies predict a terrifying new danger. The Magistratum’s greatest enemy may soon reappear—and the other mages believe that Calen himself may have a hand in his return!

(448 pages)

This book. Can you believe the cliffhanger it leaves the story on?! No, of course you can't, you haven't read it yet. Suffice to say that it was very cruel of Knudson to wait four years to publish the sequel, because - seriously. I literally spent years foaming at the mouth to find out what happened next

That said, what about the rest of the story, besides the ending? It's a good book, arguably funner to reread than the first book in the series (which had to focus more on initial setup and world-building). There is so much going on throughout The Princess of Trelian, from Meg's troubles with Jakl to Calen and Serek's issues with the other mages, and Calen's ubiquitous role in the upcoming confrontation with the main villain. I think it's pretty impressive that Knudson can make Meg do some pretty idiotic things in Princess - things that would probably make me despise any other character - but can still make me feel affection towards her. I don't exactly love Meg to pieces, but I can understand her reasoning and sympathize with her desperation to protect both Jakl and her country. I don't agree with the way she attempts to do this (and honestly, we are pretty much complete opposites when it comes to . . . well, everything), but I do understand her motives and I love her in a slightly-disapproving-older-sister sort of way. So, basically, the way Maerlie loves her.

As for Calen - ah! I love my favorite character. He has a hard journey in this book, and I feel for him every step of the way. It's hard to say too much about what happens, but from the moment the book begins he's being mistreated and doubted and judged . . . for something that he hasn't even done yet, and very well may never do at all. It's hard for him, because he's constantly being cut out of plans and kicked out of meetings, and while I'm also slightly frustrated with some of the choices he makes towards the end of the novel, I completely understand his motives and honestly don't really blame him at all. He was in a really tough spot.

I don't have much else to say about the book, because it's mainly build-up for the series finale, The Mage of Trelian. I love the Trelian series because the books don't dip in quality as they go along, and I highly recommend the entire series (barring any major problems with Mage, which I haven't read yet). If you get the chance to read it, definitely let me know what you think!

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