Author: Marie Rutkoski
Series: The Winner's Trilogy #2
Publication Date: 12th March, 2015
Lady Kestrel's engagement to Valoria's crown prince calls for great celebration: balls and performances, fireworks and revelry. But to Kestrel it means a cage of her own making. Embedded in the imperial court as a spy, she lives and breathes deceit and cannot confide in the one person she really longs to trust ... While Arin fights to keep his country's freedom from the hands of his enemy, he suspects that Kestrel knows more than she shows. As Kestrel comes closer to uncovering a shocking secret, it might not be a dagger in the dark that cuts him open, but the truth. Lies will come undone, and Kestrel and Arin learn just how much their crimes will cost them in this second book in the breathtaking Winner's trilogy.
I love the world that Marie has created in these pages. Every chapter captured my interest and it is such an unputdownable read. I found myself feeling constantly terrified for Kestrel under the Emperor and constantly wondering when or if she was going to get caught out as The Moth. The political relationships that are built are so captivating and I found myself holding my breath on so many occasions. Nothing is shied away from in these pages. Kestrel encounters torture as a test, is constantly put into questionable situations and has some ruthless run-ins with Arin. These scenes constantly broke my heart. I just wanted to push them together and make them realise how much they mean to each other! The frustration was real, my friends.
The alternating point of views between Kestrel and Arin were so great for getting a clearer picture of the full events which unfold. This also intensified their relationship and all of its miscommunications to the point that I wanted to scream. The Winner's Crime is such a fantastic sequel to The Winner's Curse and I was happy to dive straight into The Winner's Kiss. If you haven't read this series, I really don't know what you're waiting for. It's a bright, shiny diamond in the sea of YA fantasy fiction.