Warrior Witch by Danielle L. Jensen
Book Three of The Malediction Trilogy
Publisher: Angry Robot
Publication Date: May 3, 2016
Rating: 1 star
Source: eARC from the publisher
Summary (from Goodreads):
The thrilling conclusion to the breakout Malediction Trilogy by Goodreads Choice finalist Danielle L. Jensen.
Cécile and Tristan have accomplished the impossible, but their greatest challenge remains: defeating the evil they have unleashed upon the world.
As they scramble for a way to protect the people of the Isle and liberate the trolls from their tyrant king, Cécile and Tristan must battle those who’d see them dead. To win, they will risk everything. And everyone.
But it might not be enough. Both Cécile and Tristan have debts, and they will be forced to pay them at a cost far greater than they had ever imagined.
What I Liked:
Initial reaction, upon finishing this book: I wish I had never started this series. I don't think I have EVER said that about a series before. This series was a complete downhill rollercoaster - from amazing (book one) to horrible (book two) to so terrible I want to block it from my memory (book three). I feel bad because I requested this book from the publisher! But at the same time... I'm well and truly hurt right now. My thanks to Angry Robot, but, ah, I'm sorry too?
Like Stolen Songbird and Hidden Huntress, Warrior Witch is a Pili-Pushed recommendation! It's going to count for the month of March. To see the my Pili-Pushed reviews, click on the "Pili Pushed" tag (at the bottom of my blog).
What I Did Not Like:
Issues I had with this book:
- The first half (maybe a little more) is boring as h*ll. Gosh I struggled with this book overall, but a significant part of this was due to how boring the first half was. I was either bemoaning how boring it was, or how much of a dumb*ss Cécile was (whoops?). Of course, boredom is subjective.
- Cécile is actually a stupid and terrible person. Check out my Goodreads updates for this book, if you get a chance. You'll see that I struggled with her from start to finish of this book. I also hated her in Hidden Huntress - weird how I was just fine with her in Stolen Songbird. She wasn't that bad, at the time.
I have so many problems with our heroine. The author writes her in a way that she wants to seem independent and tough and bad*ss, but it seems so forced. Cécile is constantly coming up with her own (dumb) plans, and she's constantly ignoring voices of reason (i.e. smarter people than her). Where does it lead her? Well, in one instance, a whoooole bunch of people die. In another instance, she endangers Tristan. In another, she selfishly decides to do XYZ and her human family is left wondering if she is even alive. Cécile placates her own self by saying that she is "going to save everyone" and she "wants to be doing stuff", basically she wants to be a bad*ss, but she is a danger to herself and everyone else.
What makes me even MORE angry is that she's so self-righteous with it! Like she's actually saving th world - her, the human, against powerful trolls, fae, and magic she doesn't understand. Cécile is seventeen and a HUMAN. I think the author forgets this part A LOT. There is no logical way (logical within this fantasy realm) that Cécile is SO much more powerful than everyone else (or has the ability to seem really powerful) - even with her ability to make potions (or whatever "witch" qualities the author gave her). I don't understand! It makes no sense! In any case, Cécile thinks she's God, and better than everyone else. So frustrating!
AND THEN she blames everything on everyone else. Actually, let me back up. We go from bouts of self-pity and martyrdom (woe is me, I've lead to the death of these people - honey, yes you did), to omg Tristan THIS IS ALL YOUR FAULT. Um... girl. You killed Anushka. You lead to a bunch of humans dying when YOUR plan failed. Not Tristan's. Not anyone else's. You want to come up with DUMB, immature plans to "help"? Face the consequences.
- Tristan and Cécile seemed to have no relationship. How in the world did I ever fall for these two?! There was no love between them. They were hardly together in this book, and when they were, it seemed like Cécile was mad at Tristan (for nothing that was his fault), or blaming him (same story), or defying him just so she could seem bad*ss. There was one "swoony" (read: not swoony) scene - that's the scene that the author tweeted about, as "racy". Oh please. It was all of three sentences long and it was not racy (or swoony) at all. It seemed rushed and not articulated well. Also, it was one of those scenes where the two characters were like, well, we might die so... let's have sex!
I didn't feel their love. Tristan clearly cared very much for Cécile, but Cécile... I don't know what to say about her. She's selfish (but acts like she's a martyr), and I am not convinced of her feelings for Tristan. She never seemed grounded in anything except getting into the worst possible situations, making everything infinitely worse, blaming literally everyone (all the while throwing the nastiest pity parties), and trying to act like she was some kind of bad*ss female protagonist (this felt fake and forced and NO).
- Parts of the ending felt like a cop-out. Ever heard of deus ex machina? Well.
- To be honest, I'm not even sure how the ending worked. I really don't understand how some things just magically... stopped. Or how a human girl (child, I should say) was able to do certain... things. It makes no logical sense. And I'm not quite sure why and how things just... stopped.
- I've barely scratched the surface on the ending - it was HORRIBLE (and not a HEA). Hands-down the worst part of this book was the very very end, after all was said and done in terms of the war and Roland and blah blah blah. POSSIBLE SPOILER: if you like HEAs, don't read this series. The ending gutted me. I was already having so much trouble with the book - the series - and then the ending happened. It was not good. It was not happy. The last couple of sentences were an author's cop-out to have some semblance of a "happy ending", but the ending was NOT happy.
Don't get me wrong, not every book or series needs to have a happy ending. But I personally like them, and I will sure as h*ll take away stars if the ending of a book (ESPECIALLY a conclusion novel) isn't a happy one, and for cruel reasons too. That being sad, you (whoever is reading this review) might think the ending is lovely and beautiful and perfect! Not me.
Maybe I was too invested - I really wanted the ending to redeem the series for me. It was cruel, one of the cruelest endings. And the sad thing? I'm saying it's cruel but the ending is NOT what you think. Trust me, it's worse. Authors, take note: please don't end your trilogies like this.
I am so disappointed in this book. And the series, to be honest. I loved Stolen Songbird. I had issues with Hidden Huntress, and most of those issues were with Cécile. I'm incredibly disappointed that so many of those Cécile issues that I had in book two carried over into this book. And I am so emotionally gutted from the ending of this book. This book could have gotten a decent rating with the Cécile issues if the ending hadn't been so... brutal.
Would I Recommend It:
Even with all of that being said, I would never discourage someone who had read Stolen Songbird (and possibly Hidden Huntress as well) from continuing the series (unless you really trust me/my opinion, in which I'm flattered!). But if you have not started this series... maybe ask for spoilers before you do. Or, you know, just don't. Don't start the series. Don't put yourself through this misery. I literally cannot remember the last time I hated a series so much (especially after LOVING the first book! It was so incredibly amazing!). There are better fantasy series out there! Try Jodi Meadows' The Orphan Queen/The Mirror King, or Sherry Thomas' Elemental trilogy, or Robin LaFevers' His Fair Assassins trilogy.
1 star -> but I would give it 0 stars if I could. Overall series rating: 2 stars (the first book was really good). I seriously wish I had never started this series though. I think I need therapy. Or maybe several extremely sexy/swoony adult romance novels with low drama and a guaranteed HEAs? Anything to help me recover. I just want to forget I ever started this series!
Was this review helpful? Please let me know in the comments section!
Since this series seems to get worse with each book I think I'll pass. Sorry this one didn't deliver!ReplyDelete
Definitely a good idea to pass, Lekeisha! :/Delete
I remember when everyone was pushing book 1 (I still have Stolen Songbird on my shelf, though unread). It's a shame to hear the series tanked after that. :PReplyDelete
Well, in MY opinion it tanked... watch some people still adore this book (and series). I don't know though - it seems bizarre that anyone could like it, after this book's ending! o_oDelete
All I can say about this is UGH. This book is going to be a problem for me. I don't think I hated Cecile as much as you did in Hidden Huntress, but she did make me want to scream at her a few times. Also, one of my biggest trouble (besides the excessive length of HH) was the fact that she and Tristan didn't communicate very well. I really needed to see more of that and honesty between them in the finale, but it doesn't seem like that happens. After reading this review, I just flipped to the end of Warrior Witch to find out what happens, and eeeekkkk. That's going to be an issue for me. It's not as bad as another upcoming trilogy ending that I looked at recently, and promptly decided not to read the book at all. But after a trilogy like this, I need a better ending. After investing multiple books in characters and a couple, I need a solid HEA. I have a galley so I'm going to have to force myself to read this, but my expectations are very low. (PS I'm still waiting on your thoughts on The Crown's Game!)ReplyDelete
Trust me, it's going to be a problem for you, I can see that for sure.Delete
The pair definitely does not communicate well! They both make decisions without consulting the other (though it's more of Cecile's doing, than Tristan's).
I know you just read the ending, but believe me, after going through this whole book... the ending is bad, horrible, worse, and then some.
I've been pushing The Crown's Game off as long as possible! I'm so put off by the love triangle I keep hearing about. O.O But I definitely will be reading the book, have no fear!
I had to skim through your review since I will read this final book. Cecile wasn't too bad for me in HH but I guess we'll see about WW lol... Sorry you didn't love it :(ReplyDelete
Hopefully you'll like it more than I did (good luck)!Delete
WOAH!! I've yet to read the book. But I'm nervous to even try. I've checked Goodreads and some of my friends also didn't seem to love the second book like the first. I actually trust your reviews. You and I always seem to hate and love a lot of the same things. I'll still try it but it's going down my TBR list lol.ReplyDelete
I'd say never ever read this series... but hey, your call. Maybe read them all back-to-back, and, err, don't get invested at all? The ending of this book is horrible.Delete
Oh, wow, that sucks, Alyssa! I think I would've thrown the towel in after book two but I can understand having optimistic hope that the series ender would be good. It's so hard to enjoy a story when you think the heroine is a complete dumb ass. I can understand your frustrations. Great honest review, and I hope your next book knocks your socks off! :)ReplyDelete
I feel like I should have! But I so thought this book would redeem the series. AHHH! I regret everything LOL.Delete
Thank you, Rachel! <3
Oh, I am just so, so sorry sweet girl. Sorry that you had to read this goddamn awful book, lol. But also THRILLED, because you have made sure that I am never reading them, hih, and I never would have known if you hadn't read this one. Ahhh. I'm not sure what else to say, as we have already talked about it. I just. I cannot understand how an author can write a book as bad as this one. It is not fair. Such an awful ending o.O And girl sounds so horrible. Not good at all. And of course she is supposed to be "special" and know everything and whatever. So common. When she is actually nothing at all, lol. But anyway. Your review is so amazing Alyssa :) Thank you for sharing all of your honest thoughts. <3 HUGS.ReplyDelete
LOL! Someone has to bite the bullet, right? I don't mind it being me, because I like to experience things for myself... unfortunately, this book was not one I should have pushed myself to experience. It made me physically sick to my stomach!Delete
I'm glad I could help you out, with the review and the spoilers! Stay far, far away, Carina. :o
You're welcome and thank YOU!
I keep seeing these books everywhere and had just told myself that I was going to read them. But this is the first actual review of any of the books that I've read and I had to read your review because I saw what you were saying about this book on twitter or whatever. And now I'm torn. I don't know if I want to waste my time, but I'm curious about the ending of this trilogy now and the first one sounds really good! I'm not sure what I'll do, but in any case, great review! :)ReplyDelete
I personally think you should avoid the series, if you haven't read any of them! Seriously, don't do it. o_oDelete
Gosh... I think I even bought book one because you loved it so. I feel like crying for you Alyssa :(ReplyDelete
AHHHHHHHHH, LIZA, I AM SO SORRY! Don't do it! The ending of book one isn't a *happy* one, but I still loved book one, because it was unique and swoony and lovely. But book two was awful, and book three was just... ugh. I'd like to forget I ever tried. -_-Delete
Oh no, I'm so sorry you hated this book so much. I was going to read book one next month, buy now I don't think so.ReplyDelete
I'd say pass, Lis! :/Delete
Yikes! I have really wanted to read the first book, but I think I'll pass. I hate when series go downhill like that. Sorry you didn't like this one.ReplyDelete
I think that's a good idea, Erin! It's too bad. :oDelete
So, you didn't like Cécile, huh? *wink, wink* That's so unfortunate that the series has come to this dreaded place considering that it started off so well. I appreciated that you wrote this review after finishing the whole book, and not a DNF. I always wonder how a reviewer can be the judge, juror, and executioner w/o reading the whole thing. Love the passion behind this review, Alyssa.ReplyDelete
I didn't like her, and then some. o_oDelete
You know, I always wonder the same thing... I think it's fine when people DNF but when they RATE the book, that makes no sense to me. You didn't finish, how could you possibly know the whole story and make a judgment?! lol
I did finish this one! I'm not in the habit of DNFing. And given that a significant part of my issues were because of the ending... well. Ugh!
So now I want to know the ending of the trilogy? Is it utterly sad? I know you probably can't post spoilers but now I want to know before I go buy the blasted last book! Any chance you can tell me??ReplyDelete
It's so bad. If you email me (see my Contact page) or message me on Goodreads or something, I can give you the whole spoiler-y essay I wrote!Delete
Tell us the ending lol. I loved SS but man did HH sucks. Gave up on that. But I'm very curious about the end.ReplyDelete
Very disappointed though. SS was so promising for an amazing trilogy and then ugh...Major suckage 😑
I wouldn't dare, not publicly! Message me on Goodreads or email me, and I'd be happy to share all the (horrible) details.Delete
I know! I agree! Book one was soooo good... things went seriously downhill after that one (for me, at least). :/