The royal intrigue and twin bonding of The Princess in the Opal Mask (2013) continue in this sequel.
Ample back story from the start refreshes readers on the ongoing dilemmas from the first novel. The separated-at-birth twins carry on their secret, switched lives in the foreign land of Kyrenica and narrate alternating chapters. Wilha, once the Masked Princess of Galandria, serves as a seamstress while Elara, raised as an orphan, has assumed Wilha’s role (even possibly falling for the prince that Wilha was intended to marry). When the teens’ father, King Fennrick, dies and their younger brother, Andrei, not only assumes a position as Galandria’s next king, but quickly becomes a coldhearted ruler, the twins’ secret is made public. What ensues is an overcomplicated plot featuring opposing factions trying to control each of the three possible heirs and usurp their power. The story remains light, however, even as family secrets are revealed, the twins acknowledge their feelings for unlikely suitors, and the siblings grapple with the challenges of repairing their relationships with one another and the question of who will lead Galandria.
Better suited for fans of romance than fantasy enthusiasts, this concluding story will also satisfy those looking for “clean” reads. (Fantasy. 12-16)