Although not as exciting as the first two books, this is still a great addition to the series. The world building and characters really make up for the mediocre plot and the writing is still just as witty. The cover is great and the inside illustrations help bring the book alive.
Knights of Crystallia picks up just after the previous book. We find all the characters headed to Nalhalla, a city in the Free Kingdoms and Alcatraz’s home. Librarians are currently in the city with a treaty demanding the kingdom of Mokia in return for an end to the war. Giving up the Kingdom may seem to be in the King’s best interests, but the Librarians could be plotting something. Meanwhile, Bastille has been stripped of her Knighthood and is awaiting her trial with the Knights of Crystallia in order to determine whether or not she gets her station back. It is up to Alcatraz and his family to determine what the Librarians are up to and help Bastille win back her position with the knights.
“I’m convinced that responsibility is some kind of psychological disease.”
Honestly, this particular book, plot-wise, wasn’t as exciting as the rest. It definitely has that middle book feel to it. The redeeming qualities of the book were the characters and world building.
The plot was actually perfectly paced, but it wasn’t all that interesting of a premise. It was also quite predictable. I knew who the traitor was and I was quite sure how Bastille’s trial was going to turn out. Therefore, there were not any awesome twists or surprises for me. 😦 Everything turned out exactly how I thought it would, but I was hoping for something more surprising, exciting, or unpredictable to occur. It was still good enough for me to want to read the entirety of the book and I will have to read the next couple of books to see how everything plays out.
Finally! We get to explore the Free Kingdoms and I have to say that I wasn’t at all disappointed; it was everything I imagined it to be! The descriptions were spot-on and detailed! I love everything about the Free Kingdom world so far.
Throughout this book, we even learned more about the history and magic system of this universe. The Smedry talents and the Free Kingdom technology may not be as distinct as everyone was led to believe. Something mysterious is going on and I cannot wait to uncover it.
The interpretations the Free Kingdomers make of Huslander transportation and such was entertaining and absolutely hilarious! I also liked learning more about their technology, as well as the Occulator lenses.
A few new characters are introduced in this novel. I don’t particularly like a series with an abundance of characters; however, most of the new characters had distinct, interesting personalities, so it wasn’t too difficult to remember who was who. The different Talents of the characters really helps to distinguish the characters and I always love seeing a character with a Talent that seems completely useless but turns out to actually be quite helpful.
The crown prince doesn’t actually have a Talent, but he is obsessed with Alcatraz and his world. What makes him unique is his hobby of writing books. They tend not to be very good, but it is interesting nonetheless.
“You want to be a better person? Go listen to someone you disagree with.
Don’t argue with them just listen. It’s remarkable what interesting things people will say if you take the time to not be a jerk.”
Alcatraz is developing quite well. He is not only learning a lot about his Talent and how to control it, but more about the similarities between Talent’s and Occulator lenses and how they may be connected. He is also learning to become more of a member of the group and not push people away.
Except for Alcatraz and Bastille, the characters pretty much stay the same. Alcatraz’s dad has a small part in this book and I can say that I don’t like him right now because of how he treats a son he hasn’t seen in over a decade.
The writing style is something I’m not used to. However, I do like it and sometimes find it to be quite funny, though sometimes I wish there wouldn’t be so many interruptions.
The cover illustration is gorgeous but I feel like something different should have been used. I think taking the characters off for this book would have been a good idea. They don’t need to be on every cover. Why not have the building for the Knights of Crystallia be the centerpiece of the cover. There are least isn’t any blurbs and the name, author, series, and book number are all clearly displayed.