The Winner’s Kiss by Marie Rutkoski

I knew from the start this book would either make it or break it for me. I’m really glad to say that it made it. This was the perfect finale to this series and it delivered exactly as I’d wanted it to. Not only did it give the epic conclusion I wanted, but it was also satisfying and left me feeling warm all over. I love how Marie Rutkoski managed to keep me raging for the first few chapters of this book, and by the end of it, I couldn’t remember being anything but smitten with the whole trilogy 😂🥰

Somehow, so much was able to happen in this one book and not once did it feel like too much or like it was going to fast. Every single page had a purpose for being there and it constantly kept me reading, because no time felt right to stop until it was the last page of the book! To make matters better, all the chemistry between Arin and Kestrel that had been brewing since the first book finally peaked in this one and it was SO worth the wait! I love them both to death 😭💖

Like, seriously, they’re so sweet to each other, and even when they aren’t, they have SO much respect for one another. That is always something I want to see in books, especially when it’s between an enemies-to-lovers couple. Knowing they both respect each other, even if begrudgingly at first, is the ultimate winning factor for me.

Also, I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again: The way Kestrel’s mind works (her natural skill for strategy) fascinated me to no end and I just loved every moment of being in her head and watching her work through problems! It was amazing and so key to the whole storyline! What I especially love is that every single character in this story recognised that her mind was a powerful weapon—and that she knew how to wield it.

And can we just talk for a minute about Roshar and Verex?? They’re two of my new favourite side characters and I wish I could have them both as my best friends 😭💖 Roshar especially was something special, because he had that snarky, sarcastic, and witty kind of humour and teasing was his way of saying “I love you” and I just wanted to give him a hug the whole time 😭😭 And same with Verex! He was just such a sweetheart through-and-through—an absolute cinnamon roll—and he deserved a really big hug as well 😭

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