Book #120: The Winner’s Kiss by Marie Rutkoski

Some kisses come at a price.

War has begun. Arin is in the thick of it with untrustworthy new allies and the empire as his enemy. Though he has convinced himself that he no longer loves Kestrel, Arin hasn’t forgotten her, or how she became exactly the kind of person he has always despised. She cared more for the empire than she did for the lives of innocent people—and certainly more than she did for him.

At least, that’s what he thinks.

In the frozen north, Kestrel is a prisoner in a brutal work camp. As she searches desperately for a way to escape, she wishes Arin could know what she sacrificed for him. She wishes she could make the empire pay for what they’ve done to her.

But no one gets what they want just by wishing.

As the war intensifies, both Kestrel and Arin discover that the world is changing. The East is pitted against the West, and they are caught in between. With so much to lose, can anybody really win?

The Winner’s Kiss by Marie Rutkoski is the third book in the Winner’s Trilogy. I was in love with the first two and this one didn’t disappoint. The will they/won’t they interaction of Kestrel and Arin is still there, but we finally get a resolution!

Okay, now that I put that out there. . . . what I really loved about this book was the military strategy and Roshar. We meet Roshar in book two, with his deformed face from escaping slavery and his amazing personality. Well, he is still as lovable as ever and has quite possibly turned into my new favorite character. Not saying Arin and Kestrel weren’t a favorite, but Roshar is in a space of his own.

The war itself is filled with intrigue, tricks, and battles. You see more of the interaction of a Harani and their god and yet more of the world. I felt the story was complete by the end, but there are some things that aren’t resolved by the book’s end. It didn’t bother me though. I just wanted to give that warning.

The book is also a thick one, but Rutkoski’s writing style made the book flow fast. I didn’t feel like I was reading a 500+ page book.

All in all, the book was great! Not as amazing as book two, but a good ending to the overall story. I want a Bite & Sting set now. Rutkoski is definitely an author I want to continue reading. Time to find her other stuff.

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