My rating in stars: 4 stars
My rating in words: I really liked it.
Warning: Since this is book 5 in the series, both the synopsis and the review will contain spoilers for the first 4 books. The review will be spoiler-free for book 5 though.
What it’s about:
The ruthless Empress Amara of Kraeshia has taken the Mytican throne, and now uncertainty looms over the three kingdoms. Since Lucia unleashed the fire Kindred, wreaking havoc throughout the land, Myticans have been looking for someone—anyone—they can trust. They believe in Amara, not knowing her grand promises are built on lies.
In Paelsia, Magnus and Cleo reluctantly follow King Gaius to the home of his exiled mother, Selia. Selia is a powerful witch and claims she can help unlock the magic of the Kindred—if the visitors agree to her terms. When Jonas arrives from Kraeshia, he is shocked to find that his rebel army now includes his sworn enemies. Along with Nic, Felix, and the mysteriously resurrected Ashur, the contentious group agrees to cast aside old grudges—for now—and united against their common enemy: Amara.
Meanwhile, bearing the child of a Watcher and feared by all, Princess Lucia travels across Mytica to find her family. But time is running out. The impending storm signals the dark prophecy Timotheus warned her about. Her fate is written, and it includes none other than the rebel Jonas. When their paths collide, Jonas and Lucia must decide between blindly following their destiny or fighting for their own free will.
The battle for power culminates at the Paelsian palace, where Amara resides. Rain pours. Blood spills. And soon all will discover that the darkest magic comes at an even darker price.
My thoughts (Spoiler-free):
“When the storm comes, all will be revealed.”
This series. Wow. Let me just first briefly recap my feelings about this series as a whole before going into this book specifically.
I love this series. It is one of my all-time favorite series, but I have to admit it is seriously flawed. The writing is not always on point and the dialogues tend to be super cheesy. The plot is super fast-paced and action-filled, but is filled with so much drama it’s bordering on soap opera levels regularly. Secret parents, sudden deaths, betrayal, pregnancies, curses, prophecies, resurrections, love affairs, secret twins,… something shocking and scandalous happens pretty much every chapter. AND. I. LOVE. EVERY. SINGLE. MINUTE. OF. IT.
Because as much as the ridiculousness makes me laugh, I am so unbelievably addicted to this series, these characters and their fates. Because even though it is flawed, it’s almost impossible NOT to fall in love with these amazing characters and become super invested in their stories.
Having said that, Crystal Storm pretty much continues the tradition of the previous books. Though the plot seems to sliiightly calm down around the middle here, it was clearly just the eye of the storm because OMG, THAT ENDING! The ending was crazy, and if you still need to catch up with this series I’d recommend waiting just a few more months, because after reading this ending, waiting for the final book is going to be torture. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
As usual, other than the crazy speed of the plot, the characters are the real highlight here. This is a big cast with a ton of different POV’s, and still every single POV is deliciously morally grey and well developed.
Though naturally, I do have a few favorites. My number one by far is of course Magnus, my favorite dark prince who finally has his own cover spotlight. He has gone through so much and his character development is so beautiful. His relationship with Cleo is for me the heart of the series and I love how it’s been developing over the course of five books. Though they may have finally admitted their love for eachother, they’re a far cry from roses and sunshine. There are still a lot of issues for them to figure out, but I believe in them because they are my definition of an OTP <3
And a big schocker: even the other two protagonists, who usually tend to mostly annoy me, grew on me in this book. Jonas seemed at times to be the most emotionally stable person in the whole book and I felt a big need to protect him after everything he’s been through. Lucia… well, she’s never been my favorite, but I feel like she’s on the road to redemption and her interactions with Jonas made me begrudgingly come to like her.
Even the secondary characters stand out. I love Felix, because he’s just such a big, snarky ray of sunshine in the otherwise bleak darkness of the book. I love to hate Amara, because while she’s pretty evil, I do understand where she’s coming from. I hate King Gaius, but the introduction of a new character made me feel almost sorry for him. Nic… I really liked in previous books, but here he was just a whiny little bitch. And Ashur… eh. Time to be just a little smarter, man. Oh, and can’t forget Nerissa, who is just awesome even though she’s just a tiny side character.
Overall, I just love this series and I can’t recommend it enough. If you’ve read and enjoyed the previous books, I think you’ll like this one as well. If you haven’t started this series yet, I highly encourage you to do so. Just be warned that it will be a crazy ride and it’s still a while before book six!
“I believe in magic. In evil sorceresses who deep down are really beautiful princesses. I believe in immortals who live in a different world than this one, accessible by magical stone wheels. But you know what I don’t believe in?”
“I refuse to believe we have absolutely no control over our own futures, because right now? I’m damn well going to control my own.”
“I think we all deserve to die for something we’ve done. Or for something we’ve failed to do.”
“It is never too early for girls to learn to speak their minds. It’s a habit that will make them braver and stronger as they grow up.”
“There’s been so much that’s been sacrificed on this road we’ve travelled together. So much loss for both of us. But I hold tight to the thought that it will all be worth it in the end.”
“That’s right. Former fearsome assassin for King Gaius. Currently fighting the good fight as he embarks on a long and arduous path to redemption. And also currently heaving his breakfast into the sea as an offering to any fish who may give assistance.”