Hello everyone! I finally made it to the thrilling conclusion of the Folk of the Air series and I really wanted to go all out for my Queen Of Nothing review. Stay tuned to see my Jude Duarte inspired looks.
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Previously on the Folk of the Air series, Cardan pisses off Lord Roiben, a valuable ally, to appease the Queen of the Undersea who has taken Jude captive. Once freed, Jude must mend the bad blood by spilling more blood, in this case, slaying Balekin.
Madoc realizes that Jude is the puppet master and tries to recruit her in his new plan to take over the Kingdom. Jude foresees her father’s true intentions are to make her his puppet, so she declines. Madoc pivots to plan B, and sends Taryn to speak to Cardan while he is heavily drugged; Cardan confused, believing Taryn to be Jude agrees to relinquish his army.
Meanwhile, Cardan is so happy to have Jude back in Elfhame that he marries her and makes her Queen.
However, the morning after their secret wedding, Queen Oralagh demands that Cardan punish Jude for murdering Balekin, her messenger between the land and the sea, so Cardan exiles Jude into the mortal realm.
Last we saw Jude she was pouting on Vivi’s couch and watching Yuri on Ice.
Jude doesn’t stay put for long. Queen of Nothing opens with Jude sneaking up on Oak to put him in a chokehold. She spends her free time training Oak the way Madoc trained her. Oak is reluctant about these sessions, but Jude is insistent since he is going to be the High King of Elfhame someday. Oak isn’t down to be the next King and tells Jude to rule her own kingdom, but she cannot because she’s in exile. Jude is hurt, of course, but heads off to her night job in the mortal realm, running errands for other exiled faeries.
That night’s job takes Jude to knock on the door of the baddest exiled bitch in Faerie, Grima Mog. Jude’s task is to convince Grima Mog to stop eating other Faeries, which can only be accomplished by dueling. Jude wins her life and a favor from Grima Mog, but once she gets home, she encounters her wack ass twin Taryn.
Taryn pleads that Jude comes back to Elfhame and take her place in her husband’s murder trial. Naturally, Jude cusses out Taryn, but after hearing that her sister is pregnant, she agrees, plus she wants to see Cardan again and give him a few kicks for playing with her heart.
Back in Faerie, Jude, successfully lies her way through Taryn’s trial even when Cardan glamours her. However, the crowd is unconvinced and insists that she strips so everyone can verify that she isn’t wearing any Rowan berries, and Cardan offers to examine her himself. Once Jude and Cardan are alone in his chambers, he tells Jude to cut the shit and is overly happy that she’s back. Jude is shocked that her hubby recognizes her at all, and then Cardan drops a bomb asking Jude if she ever got the love notes he sent her.
Alas, the lovers are interrupted by a commotion in the hall. And when Jude goes out to investigate, she is kidnapped and taken to the north where Madoc and his army are making plans for war. While she’s here, Jude continues to act as her sister and learns that Madoc has the Ghost prisoner. Since Jude is a forgiving queen, she vows to free the Ghost— but before she can— Cardan and the Roach arrive to rescue her. Jude convinces them to help her free the Ghost, but they walk into a trap, and Cardan makes Jude promise him to run to her sisters who are waiting in the woods before he conjures some steads and zooms back to the palace. Jude lies to him and runs to the Ghost’s prison only to find Madoc. They fight and Jude bleeds out in the snow, but thanks to her sister, and some magic she lives.
A barely healed Jude runs back to the palace fully believing that Madoc has sent an assassin to kill Cardan, so she hangs out all day in the rafters waiting for one to show. However, Jude is taken for the assassin by the Bomb, and while trying to scramble away, falls and crashes on a banquet table. Now bleeding in the middle of a party, Cardan shocks all the faeries by announcing that Jude is his wife and is no longer in exile.
I call this look Jude stunting on the faeries once she steps into the role of queen.
Jude recovers in Cardan’s room, and she awakens a few times to her husband watching over her but is too sleepy to communicate. Once Jude wakes up from her healing sleep, she finds that her sisters, Oak, and Heather are all at the palace thanks to Cardan. They plan on returning to the mortal world in a few days, but Jude convinces them to stay a while longer.
Now that the secret is out, both Taryn and Cardan’s mom warn Jude against catching feelings for Cardan, and Jude starts to believe them. Although, their warnings are a tad too late.
Cardan returns from smelling flowers and tells Jude that the council wishes to speak to them. Rather than head to the council, Jude decides that they need to talk about their relationship status first, so they head to the gardens where both dorks confess to having actual feelings for each other. Cardan confesses to only being bad to gain his parent’s attention, but he’s trying to change that. Which is true Cardan hasn’t ripped off any faerie wings since book 1.
Meanwhile, Jude must trust her feelings and Cardan not to betray her. Cardan cannot be more reassuring that his feelings are true however, he can’t help but be cruel. Jude accepts this side of him and we can all call that GROWTH.
Cardan and Jude are now the hot it couple of Elhame, but their bubble is burst by boring old Madoc trying to take the crown. Shit hits the fan when Cardan accidentally invokes a curse making Jude the head of Elfhame while also working tirelessly to save her hubby from the curse.
Reading Queen of Nothing was stressful. I was hesitant about this book because I read many reviews and comments on bookstagram about this novel’s bittersweet ending. My heart still hurts from the conclusion of the Star Wars saga, so I was expecting the worst for Queen of Nothing.
As I continued reading the conclusion of this series, I expected something horrible to befall these characters. No HEA in this bih, but I found the ending to be satisfying and not bittersweet. Although I would have appreciated some cute scenes of the High King and Queen of Elfhame, pushing a red cart through the aisles of Target, I’m not going to complain of the lack thereof.
As I’ve said in the previous books in this series, Holly Black is an incredible writer and a great story weaver. I would have never expected the big twist in Queen of Nothing even though it was staring me in the face, and for that, I don’t know whether to accept my clown makeup or pout in the corner because Holly Black got me again.
Now for my personal in-depth review of Queen of Nothing below. Spoilers ahead.
I never expected Taryn to receive a redemption arc. I have spent the last two books and the novella talking trash about Jude’s twin. In the past, Taryn has taken Jude’s goodwill and stabbed her in the back with it. In Queen of Nothing, Taryn reveals to murdering Locke herself plus keeping their unborn child. Murder is only the beginning of Taryn repenting her errors, she also comes in clutch many times in this novel, from stitching up a bleeding Jude, to capturing the Ghost. Taryn has officially earned my forgiveness, and Jude isn’t a dumb bih for trusting her.
I have mixed feelings about Taryn and the Ghost’s possible romance. I may be a romantic, but this pairing has me scratching my head because it came out of nowhere. Although, I suppose both of them have grown through this series, and everyone deserves some happiness.
I can’t believe Jude is so dense that she cannot accept the fact that Cardan’s been in love with her since Wicked King. Once Cardan and Jude meet again, Cardan confesses that there was always a loophole in her exile.
As Queen, she is therefore part of the crown, and could have pardoned herself anytime she wanted. But Jude was too busy going through what she thought was a bad break up when Cardan was being flirty by giving Jude this riddle.
Yes, Cardan is a soft boi but he’s still a big dumb ass.
The plot twist in the end of the novel is insane! I never expected the curse that was foretold in Cardan’s birth chart/prophecy would involve him turning into a snake. And more importantly snake Cardan having a soft spot for his wife while also gobbling up his haters. Simply iconic!
Like Jude, I found myself worried about Cardan but I was ready to accept the consequences of her decision. I was ready to stand by Jude slaying her snake hubby even if it would hurt me. However, I should have learned by now that Cardan is a trick ass hoe and would never miss an opportunity for a dramatic entrance.
The Epilogue was also super cute although it would have been cuter if a Target trip was involved but I’ll settle for house party and Cardan adjusting his paper crown.
Let me take this time to side-eye Taryn one final time. Taryn and Cardan’s mother had the audacity to warn Jude against Cardan as if they know this bean, as well as Jude does. Both women warn Jude that Cardan can never love her back, but Cardan proved that wrong when he pissed off Lord Roiben to save Jude from the Undersea. Not only has Cardan already expressed his feelings through his actions, Jude finally gets to hear it from him, and finally, she listens.
Taryn and Cardan’s mom: broke
All readers who never let Jude fool them about her feelings: Woke
My final review of Queen of Nothing is
I love this chaotic world and I think Queen of Nothing was a great ending to this series. Hopefully, Holly Black gives us a fluffy novella or a bonus chapter of Cardan and Jude being stupid at Target.
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Check out my previous reviews of this series:
Until next time continue living in libros,
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That’s interesting that so many readers would describe the ending as bittersweet. I thought that it was rather happy. I will always side-eye Taryn, but she grew a little on me in this one. I do agree about her possible romance. It came out of nowhere and probably wasn’t necessary. Great review.
This was the best review everrrrr 😂😂💖💖
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One of my favorite reviews to write 😀