Title: Trickster’s Queen
Author: Tamora Pierce
Series: Daughter of the Lioness #2
Aly has chosen to stay with the family who bought her and freed her. But the Copper Isles are uneasy. Sarai and Dove and the twice-royal spoken of in ancient prophecy, and the raka mean to rise to put them on the throne. The current regents don’t know the full story, but they can see the attention the girls are getting from the raka, and they don’t like it. With the political situation rapidly deteriorating, Aly will need all of her skills to push the revolution into a path that will not only succeed, but won’t rip apart the Isles in the process . . .
I liked this one better than the previous. Aly’s skills are still sharp, but not quite so oversized, and the Trickster isn’t meddling in such annoying ways anymore. Also, with an entire island chain to destabilize, Aly’s finding herself in more of a position of desk work than field work. She has to direct the rebels who have trained for this and teach them the best ways to go after their targets.
There’s also some dissension in her camps. Nawat, tired of his uselessness in a city compared to the country, leaves for other islands where the crows can do more to help. Aly tries not to let his loss shake her, but she’s frustrated with him and herself.
I liked Taybur Sibigat. He’s not exactly on Aly’s side, but he’s not exactly an enemy either. He’s sworn to protect the four-year-old king. Since Aly’s plans involve deposing said king so the country can get rid of his regents, she’s uncertain what to do about him long-term. But her plans involve far more than the little monarch. They have a weird sort of rivalry going that’s a lot of fun to watch.
The plotting takes a long time to bear its ultimate fruit, with several surprises along the way. I rate this book Recommended.