The Ikessar Falcon continues straight after what happens in the first novel. Queen Talyien is still stuck in the territory of her enemies and is doing what ever possible to be reunited with her son Thanh and bring her husband Rayyal back with her. However, being a magnet to issues is something that Tali must continue dealing with as she faces conundrum after conundrum in her quest to return home. Tali will face even more formidable enemies in the form of dragons, monsters, and deception inside every nook and cranny.
The Ikessar Falcon by K.S. Villoso is the second book in the Chronicles of the Bitch Queen series. Like the first book this was an absolutely intense and electrifying continuation of Queen Talyien’s story. Tali has fast become one of my favourite female fantasy characters this year. I loved her personality, determination and how strong willed she was. What I really loved however was the fact that Villoso doesn’t shy away from Tali’s flaws and boy does she have many. But this is what makes her feel so real as she attempts to overcome her flaws and the burden on her shoulders. You do really feel for her as she’s attempting to be a mother to her son and keep him safe whilst also preventing her empire and marriage from self imploding. Her reign hasn’t started in the best of ways and she knows she could be a better leader, but she is trying her best people!
In terms of character development, Tali again has to overcome her fears and oust this perception from the mind of others that she is just like her father. Tali wants to be her own person rather than others choosing who she is/should be. Essentially, Tali for me is what kept this story alive and beating. I loved exploring her personality and how she thinks about her place in the world. Her father has left her with problems amounting to a mountain of shit and she has to somehow clean up the mess.
Villoso also expands further on the world as we meet new characters while also expanding further on favourite side characters such as Lo Bahn and Khine and the introducing new characters such Kaggawa, Cho, Eikaro, and many others. Many of the side characters have their own distinct personalities and habits. I again loved the dynamic between Khine and Tali. The chemistry between them is amazing and the spark they have is unparalleled.
In terms of the world building, Villoso adds more depth to Tali’s world through the introduction of monsters, dragons, mages, and power known as agan. Learning about the agan and it’s consequences was really interesting and highlights the issues that have been occuring within the world. The fight scenes and action pack an even bigger punch as well this time which was exhilarating to read.
Overall, another perfectly crafted story by K.S. Villoso! It’s such a well written character driven story with a world you can’t help but be engulfed by. This series has fast become one of my favourite fantasy series ever and it’s one I definitely think everyone should read! I can’t wait to start book 3 soon 😊
Thank you Angela and Orbit for sending me a copy! Very grateful as usual.