Book review: The Winner’s Kiss (TWC #3) by Marie Rutkoski

Title: The Winner’s Kiss (TWC #3)
Author: Marie Rutkoski
Daniela’s rating: +++++5 stars

Daniela’s review

OH MY GOD!!!!!!!!!

Can I just read this series all over again, a thousand times?! I probably will, because OH MY FREAKING GOD.

It was everything, EVERYTHING I TELL YOU, I was hoping for. It was more. It was PERFECT!!!!!!!!!!!

War has begun. Arin is in the thick of it, with the East as his ally and the empire as his enemy. He’s finally managed to dismiss the memory of Kestrel, even if he can’t quite forget her. Kestrel turned into someone he could no longer recognize: someone who cared more for the empire than for the lives of innocent people-and certainly more than she cared for him. At least, that’s what he thinks.

But far north lies a work camp where Kestrel is a prisoner. Can she manage to escape before she loses herself? As the war intensifies, both Kestrel and Arin discover unexpected roles in battle, terrible secrets, and a fragile hope. The world is changing. The East is pitted against the West, and Kestrel and Arin are caught between. In a game like this, can anybody really win?

NOTE: This is the review for the third book of the series. It may reveal things from the first two books, so if you haven’t read them, you shouldn’t read this review.

Man, I swear, it’s been a while since I’ve obsessed over a series like I’ve been doing with this one. I want to tell the whole world how much I loved this, because seriously, it was soooooo DAMN GOOD.

We have a girl whose decisions got her into a lot of trouble. Her father practically left her for dead and now she has to face a horrible fate, one that might end up making her lose herself completely, with no memory of who she is, what she did and what she wants. Will she be able to leave this prison? Will she be able to get back to her old self?

Kestrel was so close to being completely lost. Like, I was seriously afraid for her but I love how she overcome every single thing that came at her. She was the strongest of them all and she was set to be the best version of herself, even if that meant going against her own father. No more lies, no she now was ready to play a game she was set to win. She is definitely one of my new heroines. The girl is strong as fuck and ready to kick asses.

Arin, on the other hand, is causing all kinds of trouble for the Valorian people (YAY Arin!). They’ve destroyed or tried to destroy everything he cares for, his people, his life, his entire country. With no Kestrel to distract him, he now has an entire new focus and he can finally do what he was created to do. Fight. Only, his idea of what happened might not be exactly right. Will he go back? Will he save the one who almost destroyed him?

Now, Arin. I’ve always known he’s just a teddy bear on the inside, even though he looks all tough and has to make the hardest decisions, the guy is all gooey on the inside, full of so much love and need to be loved. Man, I wish I could hug him, seriously. I would never let go. I love him. I love him. I LOVE HIM.

I can’t believe how fast this series went by. Like, one second I was reading the first book and the next, I was finishing the last one. I wish I would’ve taken it slowly, but seriously, how could I? I couldn’t put these damn books down for even a second. Whenever I wasn’t reading, I was just thinking and dreaming about it. This story and its characters drove me insane with love and hurt and war. Everyone was at war. Everyone was one second away from just dying. How could I not read it quickly? I needed to know EVERYTHING.

Now I’ll have to find some time to reread it because YES, it’s totally worth a reread. A thousand of them, actually.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it now. Marie Rutkoski, you are a FREAKING GENIUS. Jesus, how could she manage to make this entire thing work? With so much hurt and betrayal and frustration and passion to wrap it all up? I have no idea. But it did, it work perfectly and I just loved every single second I invested on these books.

Want to know something I seriously love? When I was starting this book, I was kind of scared because of course, I wasn’t sure what the hell was going to happen. I’ve had some crappy experiences with the last book of a series and I was just so damn scared that it would happen again, but this author creates amazing and unexpected twists that are just so damn captivating. But beyond that, I was scared because yes, it was the last book, but would it be as good as the previous two? Would it meet my expectations?


Jesus, it was SOOOOO GOOOD. I was pretty sure my friend, who was reading it along with me, was never going to buddy read with me again, because I tended to leave her behind more often than not haha (I’m sorry Laura, I couldn’t stop reading!!!!!!!). But seriously, everyone, ABSOLUTELY EVERYONE should read this series.

The ending was kind of quick, but like ripping a band-aid. Yes, it was fast, but damn it, it brought so much peace. Like, it fit perfectly and it was just everything I could’ve hoped for. I wouldn’t change a damn thing about this book or the entire series.

It’s perfect.

It’s amazing.

It’s EVERYTHINGGGGGGG I wanted to read.

Definitely one of my top reads of the year.



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