Book Reviews

Mini-Review: The Winner’s Curse


Title: The Winner’s Curse

Author: Marie Rutkoski

Published: 4th of March, 2014

Pages: 384

Goodreads rating: 4.04

My Rating: 3


As a general’s daughter in a vast empire that revels in war and enslaves those it conquers, seventeen-year-old Kestrel has two choices: she can join the military or get married. But Kestrel has other intentions.

One day, she is startled to find a kindred spirit in a young slave up for auction. Arin’s eyes seem to defy everything and everyone. Following her instinct, Kestrel buys him—with unexpected consequences. It’s not long before she has to hide her growing love for Arin.

But he, too, has a secret, and Kestrel quickly learns that the price she paid for a fellow human is much higher than she ever could have imagined.

Set in a richly imagined new world, The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski is a story of deadly games where everything is at stake, and the gamble is whether you will keep your head or lose your heart

The Winner’s Curse is accessible, entertaining young adult fiction with a suspenseful romance and some tense action scenes. It is by no means five star fiction, but it makes a good read on a rainy day when you are just looking to escape on a romantic adventure.


What I liked (Spoilers ahead!):

  • Arin’s journey from hating Kestrel to loving her and how this is done gradually.
  • Arin’s personal history and how this is revealed.
  • The romantic tension.
  • The twist with Cheat and the resolution for his character.
  • The mythology i.e. “The God of Lies”.
  • The build up to the next book.

What I didn’t like:

  • The lacklustre world-building.
  • The token underdeveloped best friend Jess.
  • The token underdeveloped admirer Ronan.

Have you read this book? What did you think?





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