Title: The Winner’s Curse (The Winner’s Trilogy #1)
Author: Marie Rutkoski
Format: E-book ( Farrar Straus Giroux | Owned)
Winning what you want may cost you everything you love
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.
Why did I pick this book:
First of all, you know the huge hype surrounding this book. Yep before the book was released, I see it almost everywhere and it seems like everyone was reading it then. Next, was of course the amazing cover. I loved the typography on it and how the girl was holding on to the letter “R”. A few days before I bought this book, I read reviews and most of them were good ones, I did not come across any that did not enjoy the book.
It took place after the Valorian took over the Herrani and now the Valorians are of higher class than the Herrani who are no mostly slaves. Our main character Kestrel, a Valorian General’s daughter bidded for a slave and won the auction and he was a blacksmith for the household. She do attend parties, but dresses and stuff do not interest her. And in parties, she seldom engage in gossip but in games, Bite and Sting (sort of Poker game). Her friend’s brother has a crush on her but she acts oblivious to it. The slave she bought, Arin had ulterior motives and tried getting close to her. There were times he escorted Kestrel to the marketplace and told her he had to run some errands but he’s actually meeting Cheat to pass information about the General and Kestrel. Cheat and other Herrani, were planning to overthrow the Valorian and want to get revenge for the treatment they received. I found this part cliche where a nobel man’s daughter fell in love with a slave and there were consequences and there was a bittersweet ending. It was interesting in the first ten chapters, then it started to derail and I thought the story was going to end in a crash at this rate. At the last 25% of the book the main plot finally showed up and things started picking up and it ended pretty okay.
Kestrel. She’s weak. I don’t really understand her fully nor do I feel attached to her. There’s one thing I wanted to ask her is did she feel a bit remorse when she betrayed her own people all because of the slave? Did she even feel a slightest bit? I liked how she handled the situation when she got away from Cheat and was looking for any Valorian who could help her and I liked her strategy of Herrani, becoming a Valorian colony. I mean its a win-win situation as the Herrani wants freedom from slavery and the Valorian’s wants control over them. I guess that’s the only redeeming thing I see in her. Next we have Arin. He was purposely sold to Kestrel’s household so that he could make weapons, find out about the General and report back to Cheat. But he’s got such itchy mouth to talk to Kestrel. She’s his master and he should follow protocol. And Kestrel was too soft on him and allowed him to be around her. And he also unknowingly fell for her. How weak.
Rating: 3/5 stars