Monday, June 25, 2018

#Review - Allied (Ruined #3) by Amy Tintera #YALIT #Fantasy

Series: Ruined # 3
Format: Hardcover, 416 pages
Release Date: May 1, 2018
Publisher: HarperTeen
Source: Library
Genre: Young Adult  / Fantasy / Epic

In the final book in the New York Times bestselling Ruined series, the romance of The Selection and the epic stakes of Red Queen come together in a story of revenge, adventure, and unexpected love.

Emelina Flores and her sister, Olivia, were determined to bring peace to the people of Ruina. But as the war for liberation raged on, what triumph and freedom meant to Em and Olivia slowly changed. As Olivia’s violence and thirst for vengeance became her only ambition, Em was left to pick up the pieces.

But it’s not only Em who is upset by Olivia’s increased violence. Other members of the Ruined army are beginning to see the cracks, and soon a small group of them defects from Olivia’s army and joins Em instead. The two sisters are soon pitted against each other in an epic battle for the kingdom and the future, and only one will win.

Allied is the third and final installment in author Amy Tintera's Ruined Trilogy. Allied is a solid finale to the Ruined trilogy with plenty of action, suspense, twists, and romance. The story is actually told via alternating POV's which include Emelina & Olivia Flores, Prince Casimir, Iria Ubirio, and my favorite male character, Aren. As a summary, Emelina has been called the "Useless One" and was ignored by the Ruined because she has no powers; until she did the impossible. 

Em is the girl who killed a princess then posed as her, married Prince Casimir, while also freeing her sister, Olivia who was taken hostage and tortured by the now former King of Lera who despised the Ruined. Em is now the apparent Queen of the Ruined, but it is Olivia who holds the most dangerous powers of any character outside of Aren. Em is also the only one that can't be hurt by Olivia. Comes in handy especially since Em is also skilled with a sword. 

As the story moves forward, Emelina is no hero, but Olivia is definitely a villain who wants to war on pretty much anyone who stands in her way, especially those who harmed her Ruined. With powerful Ruined aligned behind her, Olivia plans a systematic attack on every town that stands between her and her revenge against those who destroyed her kingdom. Em has only one real avenue; aligning herself with Cas and Lera, turn her back on Olivia, and pray that more Ruined will join her against Olivia and threats from Jovita and King August of Olso whom Em was supposed to marry.

Meanwhile, Iria is an Olso prisoner having been charged with treason. Olso warriors were defeated in Lera and lots of the blame lay at Iria's feet. With no hope of being rescued, Iria settles in for what is supposed to be a lifetime prison term filled with abuse, torture, and anything else that comes her way, unless a certain Ruined can somehow manage to slip through the borders and rescue her. If you are waiting for me to say it, well...

Ok, I adore the fact that Aren has stood alongside Em. I adore that he's never forgotten his promise to Iria who he loves to find her and rescue her. Rescuing Iria and bringing her back to Lera where she can help defend the country, will be his pièce de résistance. I love their relationship, and am glad that things go the way I hoped. I also appreciated that Aren has made friends with Cas and even Galo, the Lera Captain of the Guard who fights alongside of Aren and the other Ruined who becomes Lera's allies.

As I summarize Cas, I am being a bit tentative not to get to spoiler-y. After all, Cas is a character who has faced just as much as any character in this book. he's been stabbed, shot with an arrow, and poisoned. He fell in love with a fake princess, but his heart remains open to loving Em and aligning his future with hers. With several different factions closing in on his castle, and his people, it will take a miracle to survive. Can Cas and Em put aside a past history that is filled with bloodshed, distrusts, and large body counts on each side? Can the Lerans and the Ruined co-exist together without one side trying to annihilate the other? Finally, will both sides accept Em as Queen or will they revolt? 

Conclusion? A satisfying ending with plenty harrowing action, suspense, romance, and twists. Read the series folks!

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