From the moment I read the blurb for this novel I knew I HAD to read it and I’m so glad I did. And the stunning cover didn’t hurt at all as far as drawing my attention.
But back to the story itself. The book follows the alternating viewpoints of Devonry and Solomon – and I’m so glad we got both of their perspectives throughout. There is the obvious reason of getting to see inside both their heads and being able to see their different motivations, but it also felt essential to certain aspects of the story, details of which are not known to both characters. Besides this there’s the simple fact that it’s so entertaining going from grumpy to sunshine and back, a trope I love and is so amusing to see play put going from being inside one characters head to the others.
To elaborate on the characters, I really enjoyed the main POV characters as discussed above. Solomon was an immediate favourite with his protectiveness and grumpiness when it came to his charge, Princess Devonry. I adored how stoically he tried to come across as uncaring and unaffected by her, despite the reality of the bond he secretly holds with her. He is her guardian and he takes his role serious almost to a fault, deliberately destroying any friendship they once had. I loved him immediately and was so obsessed with his chapters.
Now Devonry. She is very much a Princess; the quintessential damsel in distress. But. This actually didn’t bother me as I felt it was very true to the character that is laid out from the start. She’s adamant about not believing in violence because of the beliefs her mother instilled in her, therefore it always made sense that she abhorred anything violence related and was incapable of defending herself as a result. Even better, this viewpoint played such an essential role in her growth. I don’t want to elaborate on this for fear of spoilers, because it’s something that becomes relevant much later in the book, but to summarize, I really enjoyed where Devonry went throughout the course of the book compared to where she started.
There were so many tropes I love that had me so gleeful while reading this. First of all, as mentioned previously, there’s grumpy and sunshine. There’s also guardian romance, one horse, one bed, forbidden romance, fated mates, hate to love, and so many other good ones. I was in my trope heaven. And of course there’s the fact that it’s a dark fantasy romance which is basically my favourite genre right now. This book basically had everything I could have wanted or asked for and it did it so well.
The story follows Solomon and Devonry as they become fugitives in their own kingdom and have to both get away from the usurper to Devonry’s throne, and find a way to eventually reclaim it. There are a number of what feels like side quests from the main quest as the two get involved in other things going on in the kingdom, so there isn’t much resolution that takes place beyond going on the run and trying to remain uncaught by their enemies, though this can be expected from the first book in a series. The latter part of the book takes a very different path than expected, but I still enjoyed where it went and I feel it was very productive as far as Devonry’s character development and leading her towards the person she is going to become.
All in all I very much enjoyed Crown of Blood and Glass, and I eagerly anticipate the sequel as I want more Solomon and Devonry as soon as possible. I also want to see more of where this story will go. One further note, this is one hella slow burn romance. Readers beware.