Series: The Crown's Game #1
Also in this series: The Crown's Game
Published by Balzer & Bray on 5/17/16
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Vika Andreyeva can summon the snow and turn ash into gold. Nikolai Karimov can see through walls and conjure bridges out of thin air. They are enchanters—the only two in Russia—and with the Ottoman Empire and the Kazakhs threatening, the Tsar needs a powerful enchanter by his side.
And so he initiates the Crown’s Game, an ancient duel of magical skill—the greatest test an enchanter will ever know. The victor becomes the Imperial Enchanter and the Tsar’s most respected adviser. The defeated is sentenced to death.
Raised on tiny Ovchinin Island her whole life, Vika is eager for the chance to show off her talent in the grand capital of Saint Petersburg. But can she kill another enchanter—even when his magic calls to her like nothing else ever has?
For Nikolai, an orphan, the Crown’s Game is the chance of a lifetime. But his deadly opponent is a force to be reckoned with—beautiful, whip smart, imaginative—and he can’t stop thinking about her.
And when Pasha, Nikolai’s best friend and heir to the throne, also starts to fall for the mysterious enchantress, Nikolai must defeat the girl they both love . . . or be killed himself.
As long-buried secrets emerge, threatening the future of the empire, it becomes dangerously clear . . . the Crown’s Game is not one to lose.
About the Author
Evelyn Skye was once offered a job by the C.I.A., she not-so-secretly wishes she was on “So You Think You Can Dance,” and if you challenge her to a pizza-eating contest, she guarantees she will win. When she isn’t writing, Evelyn can be found chasing her daughter on the playground or sitting on the couch, immersed in a good book and eating way too many cookies. THE CROWN’S GAME is her first novel. Evelyn can be found online at www.evelynskye.com and on Twitter @EvelynSkyeYA.
First off, I just want to give a quick little review preview of this book. I have to tell you that I have been waiting impatiently to read this one – I have loved Evelyn Skye ever since I read her short story “The Chemistry of You and Me,” which was so fantastically unforgettable that I still often think about it. Of course, that also made me a bit nervous to read this – after all, such high expectations can often lead to disappointment. Well, I’m happy to say that there was no disappointment when it came to this book. It had everything I was hoping for – lush historical worldbuilding, spectacular magic and characters I cared deeply about – and, of course, beautiful writing (I expected no less from Skye). My full review will be coming closer to the book’s release date, but I wanted to give you a little taste of my thoughts here – this book will definitely feed your fiction addiction!
For my spot in the Tsar’s Guard Parade, I decided to do one of my Bookish Backdrops.
This idea was inspired by those fashion posts, where people design outfits based on the color palette from a book cover (and, often, the story too). I’m not much into fashion, but I love looking at interior design pictures. (I would love to say my own house is beautifully decorated, but we’re not that refined around here.)
So, I wanted to do something a little different, and I thought, what about designing a room with the cover palette? And so, Bookish Backdrops was born!
Here’s my take on a CROWN’S GAME room, full of Russian opulence:
Click on the links to see the source picture (and to see each picture bigger!)
Wintry Decor – Vika’s powers stem from nature and one of the first things we see her do is fight fire with ice! So, this little setting would be a perfect accent to the room, and it just so happens that it was the centerpiece at the Russian Art Museum when they had a Silver Winter Theme.
Railing – I feel like you’d need a fancy railing like this one to lead up to your luxurious Russian room.
Russian Egg Enamel Box – Yet another perfect accent to give your room that authentic touch.
Royal Bedroom – Whoever wins the Crown’s Game might get a chance to see a bit more of the Tsar’s Palace – maybe even get a peek into the bedroom. This is the front bedroom of Gatchina Palace, so the Tsar might not sleep in it, but who knows?
Bookcases – Of course, I can’t do a Bookish Backdrops without including bookcases! These are actually in Sweden, but that’s a Russian Empire Sofa and many of the books were gifts from Catherine the Great of Russia.
Crown Chandelier – You’ll need lighting in your room, of course. You could choose a fancy crystal chandelier to go with the Russian style OR you could use this fun crown chandelier. (I vote for the crown!)
Vines on the wall – Since she uses nature for her magic, Vika wouldn’t be comfortable in an indoor setting unless you brought the outside in. You could use some tips from the book Rooted in Design to do just that!
Artwork – You might think that this gorgeous painting doesn’t go with the Russian style, but it’s actually from talented Russian artist Leonid Afremov. PLUS this goes with the book in so many ways!! I don’t want to spoil anything, but I will say that benches and colorful scenery both play a pivotal role in the book!
What do you think of my Bookish Backdrop? Would you like to live in Russian opulence? Feel free to do your own Bookish Backdrop and link to it in the comments!
1 winner will receive an ARC of THE CROWN’S GAME. International.