Cassandra stands silent upon a ravaged battlefield, watching as the druids prepare the dead for the pyres, embers drifting up into the still winter darkness. She can barely breathe through the agony of her grief, but she cannot waste another second on tears.
Because Londinium, the Caesar, the empire…all of it is still out there. The empire whose code she had followed, whose prince she had promised to marry, whose schemes she had been swept up in since birth.
They tried to use her magic against her. They tried to silence her.
So she will use her magic against them. To silence them. Forever.
Length: 508 pages
Publisher: One More Chapter
Legend of the Lakes is the third book in the Once and Future Queen series. You can find my reviews of the first book, Secrets of the Starcrossed, and the second book, Curse of the Celts, by clicking on the links. I loved the first book, but the second didn’t quite live up to its promise. I was hopeful that the third would recapture that wild and romantic feeling that the first had.
It didn’t. Mostly.
The action in Legend of the Lakes picks up right where the second left off, after the major plot twist and uncomfortable ending. I felt for Cass, the main character, as she dealt with the fallout from the previous book, and I think the writing at the beginning struck the right tone.
O’Connor builds the story up quite slowly, the action taking place over a number of years. I think it would have benefitted from being set over a shorter period of time, as the previous books were. I’m not sure the expanded timeline really added much to the story either.
For me, once more, it was the relationship between the main character and her love interest that carried Legend fo the Lakes. I wanted to know if they got together and would stay together, and I wanted to see it happen. O’Connor’s strength, for me, is definitely in writing the romance.
My biggest complaint though, is that plot got quite confusing. By the end I wasn’t following it at all, and I was just getting the gist. There’s a lot of info-dumping at the end, and I just couldn’t understand who was who, and who had done what at what point. There were some plot twists, but not quite as shocking as the end of the second book (one nearly was, but I suspected how it would turn out).
I like Cassandra as a person, and I have sympathy for everything she goes through. She does spend a good deal of this book depressed (understandably), and I did get a bit annoyed at other characters who seemed to think she should just snap out of it.
Which leads me into another thing I found annoying. Cass would think something, and the reader would be told through her first-person narration, but then she wouldn’t say what she was thinking to the other character and instead let them misunderstand her. This was frustrating. I just kept thinking: well tell him that then!
I also think that while Cass grew as a character on the surface, there was a lack of depth to her. Despite the first person narration, I often felt quite disconnected from her. During some parts of the book, I felt with her. I felt for her. I felt connected to her. But at others, it’s like she was a passive observer, and when it came to her as a person, I did feel like the depth was lacking.
Overall, I enjoyed this series. I think it’s a fun read and it’s strength really is the romance. I appreciated the rapid release schedule the series got from its publisher, as if I’d had to wait years to read this story, I think my attention and enjoyment of it would have waned. So I wish more publishers would do this.
Would I read more from Clara O’Connor? Perhaps. We’ll see what she comes out with next.