Four Dead Queens

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Four Dead Queens is an ambitious attempt at a unique, genre-bending novel that offers readers a fantasy, a dystopian, a romance, and a mystery all at once. The story follows protagonist Keralie in the world of Quadara where she gets swept up, along with handsome partner Varin, into trying to uncover who is responsible for murdering all four of the country’s queens. Along the way, Keralie also learns more about the dark sides of her country, which is divided into four quadrants that function basically independently.

Unfortunately, the blend of four genres means that basically none of them gets the development they deserve, and the book overall feels incohesive. The system of government is fundamentally illogical, and that undermines the fantasy world building. The plot happens over the course of only a few days, which means the romance is rushed. There is a whole dystopian quadrant, but the book is not actually about that, so it is only touched upon. The mystery is the most compelling aspect of the novel, as it inspires readers to keep going to find out what happens next and who the culprit is, but it is not really the type of romance that the reader can independently solve, which makes it less engaging. This novel has lots of potential, but it simply was not realized.

Reviewed By:

Author Astrid Scholte
Star Count 2/5
Format Hard
Page Count 432 pages
Publisher G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
Publish Date 2019-02-26
ISBN 9780525513926 Buy this Book
Issue May 2019
Category Young Adult


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