Jennifer Nielsen – The Shadow Throne (The Ascendance Trilogy #3)


One war.
Too many deadly battles.
Can a king save his kingdom, when his own survival seems unlikely?

War has come to Carthya. It knocks at every door and window in the land. And when Jaron learns that King Vargan of Avenia has kidnapped Imogen in a plot to bring Carthya to its knees, Jaron knows it is up to him to embark on a daring rescue mission. But everything that can go wrong does.

His friends are flung far and wide across Carthya and its neighbouring lands. In a last-ditch effort to stave off what looks to be a devastating loss for the kingdom, Jaron undertakes what may be his last journey to save everything and everyone he loves. But even with his lightning-quick wit, Jaron cannot forestall the terrible danger that descends on him and his country. Along the way, will he lose what matters most? And in the end, who will sit on Carthya’s throne?

 (I apologize that this is the 3rd book in a series and I don’t have the other two (yet) but if you’ve read the other two, you’re good. Even if you haven’t you should be good)


Ok, first off, I was absolutely in love with the rest of the series so I had high hopes when I finally got it. Did this book meet my expectation? Kinda.  I’ve heard some people say it was terrible, a letdown, super boring but I think the best description is the one that says “it was the weakest of the series.” That’s the truth. It’s the weakest of the series but still nowhere near Mockingjay in weakest last book (is that a thing?) or any of the other stuff above.

  Of course it was the same general plot, impossible circumstances, everybody: “noooo Jaron” and Jaron: “yesss Jaron” and of course Jaron being right. Our favorite overused plot. But this time there’s more a sense of urgency, a sudden death if you fail (as if the others weren’t) and basically a really tense, danger at every step feeling throughout the whole book. His scheming and planning is downplayed while his danger and final plans are emphasized so when he doesn’t die, it’s like a bulldozer through your brain.

  So basically Jaron’s goal is to rescue Imogen, the servant girl he met at Farthenwood and is super in love with. But he seems to have a hundred problems. From page 1, his captain of the guard “ditches” him and he finds out Imogen is captured and his three neighboring countries are united in a war against him. Of course, he wants to do everything himself but isn’t stupid or so he thinks.

  His enemies actually get one up on him and because of that he rots underground for a year (or a few weeks). But is he done? No! He escapes yet another certain death and becoming a king, thief, commander and strategist all in one combined. He defeats one army….. only to be overwhelmed by another and one that is hell bent on killing him.

  Of course, with that suspense, that daring, that plot manipulation, who can resist being enthralled? One thing I did have a problem with is….  ROMANCE. The first two books, there was some romance and I really liked it. Jaron and Imogen sacrificing their love for each other to protect each other and just kicking ass with each other. But this one, overdone and frankly, unnecessary. He rescues her and she runs her hand through his hair and he’s filled with all this lovey feeling WHILE like three hundred thousand enemy soldiers are running towards them, trying to kill them.


And not only that, the princess he’s betrothed to, falls in love with his prime regent and one of his best friends, Tobias out of nowhere. Just death, death, escape, war, fugitives and oh hey! SUDDEN ROMANCE. Just a little issue with that. I get that his kinda forced love triangle has to be resolved but can we get a little development here, just maybe?


Great great read. Whiplash fast and full of suspense and surprises, danger and fighting.


Rating : 4


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