Format: Hardcover, 432 pages
Release Date: January 3, 2017
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Ansa has always been a fighter.As a child, she fought the invaders who murdered her parents and snatched her as a raid prize. She fought for her place next to Thyra, the daughter of the Krigere Chieftain. She fought for her status as a warrior in her tribe: blood and victory are her way of life. But the day the Krigere cross the great lake and threaten the witch queen of the Kupari, everything changes.
Cursed by the queen with fire and ice, Ansa is forced to fight against an invisible enemy—the dark magic that has embedded itself deep in her bones. The more she tries to hide it, the more dangerous it becomes. And with the Krigere numbers decimated and the tribe under threat from the traitorous brother of the dead Chieftain, Ansa is torn between her loyalty to the Krigere, her love for Thyra, and her own survival instincts.
With her world in chaos and each side wanting to claim her for their own, only one thing is certain: unless Ansa can control the terrible magic inside her, everything she’s fought for will be destroyed.
The Cursed Queen is the second installment in author Sarah Fine's The Imposter Queen series. The book is being called a companion novel to the first installment in the series, and that's because it takes place at the same time as The Imposter Queen. This book is about 17-year Ansa, a girl who was taken from her murdered family by the Krigere's. She is a red-haired warrior who has a red flame mark on her right calf. If you paid attention while reading The Imposter Queen, you know that this is very significant.
Ansa, who lives by the motto Blood and Victory, has had to prove herself since being taken to the Krigere's. She fought hard, and has earned the right to be on the invasion force headed to Kupari. But, what Ansa and the rest of her fellow warriors don't know, is that they are no match for the witch queen of Kupari. Valtia has the dual abilities of fire and ice. She can destroy an entire invading forced without anyone else around. After the tribe is decimated, Ansa, who is loyal to the new Chieftain Thyra, has little or no choice but to pack up and move it to Vasterlit where one of their former tribesman is now in charge of the castle.
After the loss of her tribe, Ansa learns that she may have been cursed by the witch queen. She can now wield fire and ice, and if she isn't careful, she will be put down for the Krigere's have no use for witches. Ansa's emotions control her abilities. Her feelings for Thyra are tested over and over again while Thyra herself is being challenged by Chieftain Nisse's tribe mates. Ansa is fierce, and you could see that from the first chapter when she tried to fight back when only a little girl.
Let's get a few things straight. First, Ansa is not Elli, the previous protagonist from The Imposter Queen. Ansa is who Elli was supposed to be. Second, Ansa is very powerful, and has the ability to kill without hesitation, or reservation if someone hurts someone she loves. Ansa is also obsessed with Thyra to the point where I wanted to slap her head. Girl, get over yourself, there are much more important things going on in this world that can kill you easily if you keep ignoring them while falling all over yourself with Thyra.
I was asked if any of the previous cast of characters showed up in this book. I would have said no, until I realized that yes, Sig does show up in this book, as well as a priest who loves to drink the blood of magic users which we saw in the first book. Sig is a very dangerous fire wielder who attempts to teach Ansa about her abilities. Sig, I dare hope, returns for the third installment along with Halina, a Vasterutrian who becomes part of Ansa plan to save her tribe, and take down Nisse. I had no real issues with Thyra. I think she genuinely cared for Ansa even when she was ignoring her. By ignoring her, I think she was trying to take the spotlight away. Thyra also isn't as bloodthirsty as Ansa, but she is a helluva fighter which shows after she is challenged over and over again.
I do realize that this book is leading into the third and presumed final book called The True Queen. I would guess that all of the previous cast members would be making an appearance as well. I do hope that Ansa and Elli will find a way to work things out so that both survive against what is to come next.