Castles in Their Bones is the first book in a new YA fantasy series by Laura Sebastian who is the author of the Ash Princess trilogy. While I liked the Ash Princess, I read it way too late and never picked up the second book but I decided to give this author another shot. I loved this book! My first 5-star read of 2022. Castles in Their Bones will be published on February 1, 2022.
Empress Margaraux has had plans for her daughters since the day they were born. Princesses Sophronia, Daphne, and Beatriz will be queens. And now, age sixteen, they each must leave their homeland and marry their princes.
Beautiful, smart, and demure, the triplets appear to be the perfect brides—because Margaraux knows there is one common truth: everyone underestimates a girl. Which is a grave mistake. Sophronia, Daphne, and Beatriz are no innocents. They have been trained since birth in the arts of deception, seduction, and violence with a singular goal—to bring down monarchies— and their marriages are merely the first stage of their mother’s grand vision: to one day reign over the entire continent of Vesteria.
The princesses have spent their lives preparing, and now they are ready, each with her own secret skill, and each with a single wish, pulled from the stars. Only, the stars have their own plans—and their mother hasn’t told them all of hers.
Life abroad is a test. Will their loyalties stay true? Or will they learn that they can’t trust anyone—not even each other?
This was so good! I stayed up late finishing it which I rarely do but I couldn’t put it down. The plot twisted and turned and surprised me all the way, I loved it.
The characters took awhile to grow on me but I loved them by the end. I had a hard time telling the sisters apart in the beginning but once I got them straight, they really were different and fun. I wanted them each to succeed even when they weren’t working towards the same end goal which was confusing yet made it a really fun read. Their relationships with their princes/king were different and the characters they ran into along the way were varied and each was interesting in their own way.
The plot itself is what really drew me in. Each story individually is a well-written and fairly interesting YA fantasy following pretty normal tropes. But jumping from to the other and seeing how the thing sister A did impacts sisters B and C was just so much fun. My jaw definitely dropped more than once. I saw the twist at the end coming but oh man, it twisted so much further than I expected and I’m so sad I can’t immediately jump into the next one. I will be anxiously awaiting it’s release.
If you like YA fantasy and a good princess with an evil plot trope, this one is definitely for you.
*I received a free ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.