Title: The Righteous
Series: The Beautiful #3
Author: Renee Ahdieh
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Published: December 7th, 2021 (G. P. Putnam’s Sons BYR)
Synopsis: Following the explosive events of The Damned, Odette faces a vampire’s final death. The Court of the Lions have done everything they can to save her but have failed. A healer from the Sylvan Vale could help her, but only Arjun Desai, as a half fey, can cross the boundary between realms. The Sylvan Vale is a world Arjun despises, and in return, it despises him. But knowing it could save Odette, he returns to the Vale with all haste, leaving the mirrored tare between the two worlds open and unwittingly setting the stage for both love and war.
It’s mere days until Pippa Montrose is to wed Phoebus Devereux and become a member of his well-heeled family, offering salvation to her own. But Celine is missing. Pippa has no idea where her best friend has gone, but she’s certain it’s in the company of vampire Sébastien Saint Germain and that Arjun can lead her to them. Pippa enjoins the help of Eloise, the daughter of a powerful sorceress, to discover the gateway Arjun uses to travel between worlds. Pippa, tired of hesitating in life, marches right through in search of her friend. But what she discovers on the other side is a dangerous, duplicitous world full of mischief and magic she doesn’t understand, and most unexpectedly, she finds love.
Following the events of The Damned, Odette Valmont is grievously injured, and the Court of Lions has but one option left to save her – a healer from the Sylvan Vale. Arjun, being half fey, is the only one of them who can cross over into the fey realm, a world he hates, but for Odette, he agrees. Pippa Montrose is days away from her wedding, but she is determined to find Celine who has seemingly disappeared into thin air along with Sebastien. With Eloise’s help, she sets out to find the gateway Arjun uses to travel between worlds, and she unheedingly marches through, only to find herself in the dangerous world of the fey.
You might recall that I wasn’t too impressed with The Damned, and the drastic change of tack in this book was what made me curious enough to pick it up, just to see if a change in POV would make any difference to the tale. It certainly helped! I really enjoyed the initial parts of the story because Pippa and Arjun have been characters I’ve liked right from the beginning and it was so nice that this story was almost entirely focused on them. The world building was the strong aspect of this book and I particularly liked that we got to see more of both the Sylvan Vale and Wyld. The writing was wonderful, and as always, Renee Ahdieh’s narrative style never disappoints.
What this book essentially did was take two side characters and make them into main characters, a risky choice, and one think, that could have only worked with these two characters. Arjun’s been a character that I’ve found interesting right from the first book so it was great seeing his POV and getting to know more about his history. Celine and Bastien barely make an appearance and they didn’t feel like the characters we know from the first two books at all when they did. There was kind of a side plot going on there but I found it really hard to care about any of it. Back to the main plot, which is more or less the romance between Pippa and Arjun, despite a couple of cliche tropes, it was still a rather engaging read overall.
I felt the pacing was better in this book, but it still devolves into a chaotic mess towards the end that was so hard to keep track of as everything happened all at once. What I’m saying next is probably a spoiler, but I’m entirely too irked to not talk about it. What annoyed me most about this book has to be the introduction of a character from The Wrath and the Dawn verse, the author’s earlier series. I honestly don’t know what the author is thinking with this crossover, not least because the two worlds are entirely different, but I’m definitely not happy about it.
Though I generally try my best to read any series I start through to the end, whether I read book 4 depends entirely on what its premise will be, despite the cliffhanger ending of this book. Given the potential crossover ahead, I’m not too excited for the finale, but if you’ve enjoyed this series so far, I would recommend picking up this book.
Have you read this book? Let me know in the comments below!
Other reviews in this series: