Review: THE FALLEN QUEEN by Jane Kindred–and Get a Copy for Yourself

A couple of months ago, I had the chance to do copyediting on a new fantasy-urban fantasy hybrid called The Fallen Queen, due to be released next Tuesday. I approached it with some trepidation, I have to admit. First, I’m not a great fan of high fantasy, and this had a feel of epicness to it. It also had a freakin’ chart of the realms of the heavens in the front—and nothing annoys me more than a book that needs to explain itself before you start it (yes, that even goes for my much-loved Black Dagger Brotherhood and its glossary). I always skip such things.
So imagine my surprise when I realized very early on that this book from author Jane Kindred was probably going to be among the top baker’s dozen books I’ve read this year.And I’ve read a LOT of books this year.

THE OFFICIAL BLURB:Heaven can go to hell. Until her cousin slaughtered the supernal family, Anazakia’s father ruled the Heavens, governing noble Host and Fallen peasants alike. Now Anazakia is the last grand duchess of the House of Arkhangel’sk, and all she wants is to stay alive. Hunted by Seraph assassins, Anazakia flees Heaven with two Fallen thieves—fire demon Vasily and air demon Belphagor, each with their own nefarious agenda—who hide her in the world of Man. The line between vice and virtue soon blurs, and when Belphagor is imprisoned, the unexpected passion of Vasily warms her through the Russian winter. Heaven seems a distant dream, but when Anazakia learns the truth behind the celestial coup, she will have to return to fight for the throne—even if it means saving the man who murdered everyone she loved.

MY THOUGHTS: This isn’t a story of sexy angels chasing down supernatural bad guys. It’s not a romance per se although there are elements. It isn’t religious. It isn’t filled with swords, although there’s a fair amount of sorcery.

Here’s what it is: beautifully written, set in both a complex (but not overwhelming) realm of heaven and the stark reality of Russia. It is filled with three-dimensional characters you can’t help but care about, even when they’re doing horrible things to each other. It grips you early on, and barrels you from heaven to earth and back again without letting up. Anazakia is almost (but not quite) overshadowed by her demon companions Vasily and Belphagor, but in the end manages to hold her own. Two more unlikely heroes than those demons, however, I haven’t met in a while. I was truly sad when the book ended, and can’t wait to see where Kindred takes this new series next.

THE GIVEAWAY: Want to win a copy of The Fallen Queen? Have you read a book that you thought might not be your cup of tea and ended up loving it? You know the routine: +1 for comment, +1 for blog follow, +1 for Twitter follow @Suzanne_Johnson, and +1 for Tweet or Retweet. Go!

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About Suzanne Johnson

Author of urban and paranormal fantasy and romantic suspense, currently living in Auburn, Alabama. Author of the Sentinels of New Orleans series (Royal Street; River Road: Elysian Fields, Pirate's Alley, and Belle Chasse (Nov 2016). Writing as Susannah Sandlin, she is the author of the Penton Legacy series (Redemption; Absolution; Omega; Storm Force; Allegiance); The Collectors series (Lovely, Dark, and Deep; Deadly, Calm, and Cold); and the upcoming Wilds of the Bayou series (Book 1, Wild Man's Curse) releases April 2016).

17 thoughts on “Review: THE FALLEN QUEEN by Jane Kindred–and Get a Copy for Yourself

  1. I picked up Dragonfly in Amber one time because the bookstore mis-shelved it in SF/Fantasy. When I got it home and saw that it wasn’t a Fantasy book I thought I wouldn’t like it. But it was really good.

    +1 comment
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    sgiden at verizon.net

  2. Hey, I’m glad you liked it! I’ve seen this book on Goodreads and some Waiting on Wednesday posts, and would really love to read it! Thanks for the giveaway!

    +1 for comment
    +1 for blog follow (CYP @ A Bookalicious Story)
    +1 for Twitter follow (CYPyeti)

    CYP
    cypsays_hi at hotmail dot com

  3. Ooh, glad to hear it was so fantastic! 🙂 Jane’s an agency-mate of mine so I had no doubt it would be great. But like you, I’m not a big high fantasy reader, so wasn’t sure it was going to be my kind of book. But it sounds like it’s enjoyable even if the genre isn’t your typical thing. Yay! 🙂

  4. I love high fantasy and would love to read this one too. (I have to admit that I like the maps or charts at the beginning of the books, especially if it is part of a series!)

    +1 for comment
    +1 for blog follower

  5. I think this sounds like a fantastic new read…the names are a little difficult but that’s alright. I have to say that I like the diagrams that show how something is layed out…like a map, but I don’t care for the glossaries either. I usually just skip them but I’m sure some people enjoy them. It can help you remember who is who in a series if you forget 😉 Thanks for the chance to win.
    +1 comment
    +1 gfc follow as Tanyaw1224
    +1 twitter as Tanya1224
    +1 twittered at https://twitter.com/#!/Tanya1224/status/141601560986783744
    Tanyaw1224(at)yahoo(dot)com

  6. i’ve tried alexandra ivy when i wasn’t sure of it but i don’t regret it. Perhaps not my first book in the list of really good books but near

    thanks you for this giveaway ( if it’s a print copy i enter ^^)

    +1comment
    +1follow

    isabelle(dot)frisch(at)gmail(dot)com

  7. I read The Girl of Fire and Thorns recently and I really wasn’t sure if I’d care for it, but I ended up LOVING it!! I love it when that happens, don’t you?!

    +1 comment
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    +1 Twitter: @jwitt33

    jwitt33 at live dot com

  8. I’m not really into contemporary YA and I didn’t like how Between started but….I loved it!

    +1 comment
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    +1 Twitter: @jwitt33

    aliasgirl at libero dot it

  9. Yes, I was surprised at how much I loved Wither by Lauren DeStefano when a story about polygamy wasn’t me.

    +1 comment
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    +1 twitter follow

    lesly7ch(at)yahoo(dot)com

  10. Unfortunately, lately I’ve been experiencing mostly “I thought I would like it, but it’s just not my cup of tea”. Very sad.

    I did read the Hunger Games not too long ago, after resisting for ages because I thought I would hate it. I ended up liking it a lot, of course 🙂

    +1 comment
    already following blog (Faith)
    already twitter follower (@Falcon21893)

  11. Yes, I have read books that I thought I might not be really into but ended up really enjoying it. An example of such reads for me would be YA Dystopian books that became so popular this past year or so.

    +1 comment
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    chibipooh(at)gmail(dot)com

  12. i tend to try off types.. switching to historical romance from paranormals.. although i was given the first 4 harry potter books and had no interest to read them..until i started em..

    alainala AT hotmail DOT ca