The King Slayer (Witch Hunter, Book 2) by Virginia Boecker
Synopsis: “I think, in time, you’ll either be my greatest mistake or my greatest victory.”
Former witch hunter Elizabeth Grey is hiding within the magically protected village of Harrow, evading the price put on her head by Lord Blackwell, the usurper king of Anglia. Their last encounter left Blackwell ruined, but his thirst for power grows stronger every day. He’s readying for a war against those who would resist his rule—namely Elizabeth and the witches and wizards she now calls her allies.
Having lost her stigma, a magical source of protection and healing, Elizabeth’s strength is tested both physically and emotionally. War always means sacrifice, and as the lines between good and evil blur once more, Elizabeth must decide just how far she’ll go to save those she loves.
About the Author: Virginia Boecker recently spent four years in London obsessing over English medieval history, which formed the basis of her debut novel, The Witch Hunter. She now lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband and spends her days writing, reading, running, and chasing around her two children and a dog named George.
In addition to English kings, nine-day queens, and Protestant princesses, her other obsessions include The Smiths, art museums, champagne, and Chapstick. You can visit Virginia online at virginiaboecker.com or on Twitter @virgboecker.
Genre: young adult, fantasy, romance, paranormal
More Info: Kindle edition, 380 pages, published on June 14, 2016 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
I enjoyed random stretches of this book. For me, it came in waves of enjoyment. For example, I liked the beginning and end, when the two new characters are introduced and the scene when Elizabeth see Blackwell again for the first time to name a few. Some portions, like Elizabeth in the cell, I felt were lacking.
Elizabeth was the same, but also different. She was the best witch hunter there was. She was trained as a human and succeeded through all of Blackwell’s test. It was then that she received her stigma. It is in my opinion that she let the stigma do some of the work for her, because without it, while she is still kickass, she lost her touch.
I became rather pissed at John. Now, I know that he was being influenced by the stigma. I also understand that when one had such blatant, raw emotion aimed at a character, that the author is doing a good job. John is a healer; he is tender. However, he was also raised by a pirate father and knows how to handle a sword. This precarious balance is tipped by the magic he chooses to accept. In the beginning, he isn’t as strong as I believed him to be.
You don’t see too much of Fifer, but you do get to be around Schuyler. I liked him in the first book (mostly), but I liked him even more in the second book. After certain people become revenants, you learn more about what it means to be part of the dead (or is it undead?). I have a large and new respect for Schuyler after everything he did and the time it took to become more human again.
I was very interested to see the interaction between Elizabeth and King Malcolm. I was happy to discover that he is not the jerk king I thought he was, just young, spoiled, and naive.
I particularly enjoyed the ending. I think the book left off in a great place that adequately finishes the series.
In total, it was a great book. I finished in pretty fast. There were some parts that I was more inclined to skim over, but Boecker did a good job of keeping my attention. I will read this series again. It’s short, sweet and to the point.
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