Book Review: Four Dead Queens by Astrid Scholte

Four Dead Queens by Astrid Scholte

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Title: Four Dead Queens
Author: Astrid Scholte
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Publish Date: February 26, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Goodreads Ratings: Me 3.0 / Community 3.79

from Amazon:
Four dead queens. Three days to catch a killer. Two forbidden romances.
One shocking twist you won’t see coming.

Seventeen-year-old Keralie Corrington may seem harmless, but she’s, in fact, one of Quadara’s most skilled thieves and a liar. Varin, on the other hand, is an honest, upstanding citizen of Quadara’s most enlightened region, Eonia. He runs afoul of Keralie when she steals a package from him, putting his life in danger. When Varin attempts to retrieve the package, he and Keralie both find themselves entangled in a conspiracy that leaves all four of Quadara’s queens dead.

With no other choices and on the run from Keralie’s former employer, the two decide to join forces, endeavoring to discover who has killed the queens and save their own lives in the process. When their reluctant partnership blooms into a tenuous romance, they must overcome their own dark secrets in hopes of a future together that seemed impossible just days before. But first they have to stay alive and untangle the secrets behind the nation’s four dead queens.

An enthralling fast-paced mystery where competing agendas collide with deadly consequences, Four Dead Queens heralds the arrival of an exciting new YA talent.

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Keralie is a skilled thief. Varin is a on a mission to deliver a package. When Keralie steals the package, both Keralie and Varin are caught up in a conspiracy that results in four dead queens.

A standalone young adult fantasy novel. I enjoy YA fantasy, and am always happy to see standalone reads for those of us not wanting to get into another series. Anyway, I enjoyed the world in this one. Quadara is divided into four quadrants – Archia, Eonia, Ludia, and Toria. Each quadrant has a queen (Iris, Corra, Stessa, and Marguerite) and a specialty/trade (agriculture, technology, arts, and commerce). This is reminiscent of Divergent, but it works in a different way for this novel.

Told with alternating points of view – Keralie and the four queens of Quadara (Iris, Corra, Stessa, and Marguerite). Based on the title, the reader knows the queens are expected to die. Keralie is a thief who gets caught up in the conspiracy around the deaths of the queens. An interesting idea, but the multiple viewpoints didn’t completely work for me. I know multiple POVs are popular, but, for me, it often makes the story not flow as well. Keralie is well-developed and I enjoyed learning about her. The queens are not as well-developed, but there were glimpses of very interesting characters in them.

A murder mystery fantasy. I enjoyed the mystery and fantasy aspects of this novel. I was not a big fan of the romance. It was unnecessary and lacked chemistry.

A great debut novel. I look forward to more from this author. Exciting, fun, and imaginative.

I borrowed a copy of this book from my local library.

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