Title: Empire of Dust
Author: Eleanor Herman
Series: Blood of Gods and Royals #2
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Publication Date: June 28, 2016
Source: Trade with another blogger
Empire of Dust is the 2nd book in the Blood of Gods and Royals series by Eleanor Herman. As you may recall I have written a review for the first book Legacy of Kings (found HERE) and for the prequel novella Voice of Gods (found HERE). If you decide to continue on reading my review of Empire of Dust and have not read Legacy of Kings yet, I warn you that there may be some spoilers for the first book. Continue at your own risk.
Empire of Dust starts off pretty much where Legacy of Kings ends. Very little, if any, time has passed between the end of the first book and the beginning of the second. I like that it picks right up where we left off. I don't really like when series let time pass between books. It makes it feel like we took a vacation from the world and have to be briefly filled in with the details of what happened in the gap. I would rather have the complete story than the quick recap of the gap!
Empire of Dust, like Legacy of Kings, is told from quite a few different point of views. I expected this, so it was of no surprise to me. It also took me less time to get used to all the point of views this time than it did with the first book.
With so many point of views, there are quite a few story lines that all intertwine with one another that make up the overall story of Empire of Dust. The best way that I can come up with is to give you a very quick synopsis of what is happening with each individual character instead of trying to give you an over all glance of the story as a whole.
Katerina - She is trying to figure out how to navigate her life knowing that Queen Olympias wants her dead. Also, she is still working on figuring out her true identity as she discovered in Legacy of Kings and how to work with her blood magic.
Prince Alexander - He has been left in charge of the kingdom while his father is off battling. He is trying to figure himself out in his new role as leader. He is confused and doesn't know who he is, who he wants to be. He is trying to be a leader, but he still has much to learn.
Hephaestion - He is still just as whiny as ever. He is struggling with the majority of his relationships. His relationship with Prince Alexander is as strained as ever and he is finding himself more and more attracted to Katerina. An attraction that he feels is forbidden. He and Katerina get sent off on an important mission for Prince Alexander.
Zofia - She is still on a journey with Ochus. While he thinks she is taking him to find the mythical pegasus, she is trying to find the Spirit Eaters. She wants to find them so she can change her fate into one that will allow her to be with Cosmas.
Jacob - He is trying to reconcile his feelings for Katerina and trying to find acceptance that they can no longer be together. He is still with the Aesarian Lords and working on moving up their ranks.
Cynane - She has been captured by the Aesarian Lords where they torture her over and over to the brink of death. She has an uncanny ability to heal and they are trying to find the root of it. Jacob is often left in charge of watching over her and standing guard.
Queen Olympias - She is still a snake loving evil woman. She is still focused on killing Katerina. She still is trying to bring her lover, Riel, back. She is still just as rotten as she ever was. Nothing has really changed for her since book one. She has the same goals and desires and will do whatever it takes to achieve them.
This book, in my opinion, was even better than the first! And I really liked the first book, so that is saying a lot! Eleanor Herman really pulled out all the stops on Empire of Dust and brought her A game.
There were quite a dark scenes, more than I remember there being in Legacy of Kings and they were written wonderfully. I kept finding myself really drawn in and totally devouring them. The visuals I got from them made me shudder. And this happened more than once!
The battle scenes, there was more than one, were also wonderfully written! I think even better than any that were in Legacy of Kings. They were bloody and gory and I really felt as though I was there i the fight.
Yet, even though I was a huge fan of the battle scenes and the darkness in Empire of Dust, there was still a lot of beauty too. And the beauty was written just as well.
I cannot wait to get to continue with this series. I know it will be awhile for the next book, but I will definitely be reading it!
This review is based on an ARC received by trading with another blogger. All thoughts and opinions are my own.