“I couldn’t change the horrors of my past, but I could still fix the problems of the future.”
Rating: 3.5/5 stars
Release Date: November 17, 2020
Thank you Wednesday books for sending me an e-Arc in exchange for a honest review!
The Hunt is over but the War has just begun.
Against all odds, Janneke has survived the Hunt for the Stag–but all good things come with a cost. Lydian might be dead, but he took the Stag with him. Janneke now holds the mantle, while Soren, now her equal in every way, has become the new Erlking. Janneke’s powers as the new Stag has brought along haunting visions of a world thrown into chaos and the ghost of Lydian taunts her with the riddles he spoke of when he was alive.
When Janneke discovers the truth of Lydian and his madness, she’s forced to see her tormentor in a different light for the first time. The world they know is dying and Lydian may have been the only person with the key to saving it.
Goblin King is a solid follow-up to the first book in the series White Stag. Initially, I was a little hesitant jumping back into this because it had been so long since I read the first book and while I remembered all of the big events that happened I was worried there was a good chunk of this book I forgot. Luckily for me though, the author did a fantastic job of recapping the events of book one without dragging this story down and I found myself quickly reminded why I loved this dark, gritty world and these characters so much. With that being said let’s dive straight into the breakdown of what worked and didn’t work for me in this sequel!
If you missed my review for White Stag you can find it HERE!
What I Liked
🌎 Dark, ice cold world. And when I say ice cold I mean it literally. I loved the world building in the first book and I still love it just as much in this one. The only thing colder than the temperature in this book may be the goblins and I am so here for it. The author also does a fantastic job of mixing mythology into this story to allow readers to see some of the horrors Janneke and her friends will face in the upcoming pages and worked so incredibly well for this book.
🐉 Epic adventure. Goblin King is without a doubt much more fast paced than the first book. The characters go on multiple quests which had me flying through this in no time. When one problem is solved about ten more arise and the characters find themselves in some sticky predicaments.
👿 Dark fantasy. This series is very much dark fantasy, so if you’re expecting all roses and butterflies….let’s just say you won’t find that here. Janneke, is still trying to heal from her prior trauma but knowing that she will have to team up with her tormentor to try and save the world is no easy feat. Soren, who has been a vital part of Janneke’s healing process suddenly needs to rely on her for help coping with a grave and permanent injury. Plus, a few other characters have a one or two secrets they’d be all too happy if no one found out about which means there’s truly a lot going for this book but you definitely have to be able to stomach it.
👨👩👧👦 A lovable found family. As Janneke and her friends go on their quest to save the world it’s so easy to love them. Aside from what each characters brings to the table the banter between all of them leads to some seriously funny moments – even when they’re staring death straight in the face.
What I Didn’t Like
🔚 The ending. I don’t know what it is but there’s just something that grinds my gears about thinking a story is going to be over at the end of a book and finding out that that is most definitely not the case. Will I pick up the next book? Absolutely. And while I would never deduct stars off a book just for that reason, I will say that the ending of this overall just felt a bit cliche and really rushed….especially since there’s going to be at least one more book in the series.
tw: torture, mention of rape, death of an infant, suicide, gore, murder, death/sacrifice of an animal
Until next time,