My honest review of The Forgotten Kingdom by Signe Park
If you’re looking for historical and fantasy fiction in one, The Lost Queen trilogy by Signe Pike is not a series to overlook. While only two of three books are out, they offer an intricate and thrilling tale. The Forgotten Kingdom is the second of books, continuing the tale of Languoreth and her twin brother Lailoken.
I receive an advanced copy for free thanks to Netgalley and Simon & Schuster Canada and Atria Books in return for an honest review. That’s exactly what I offer.
The second book in a trilogy
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One thing I will say is that unlike some other book series, this is one where you need to read the first book in the series first. If you jump straight to The Forgotten Kingdom, there will be a few scratching-of-the-head moments.
It’s hard to follow where Lailoken is in his journey and what’s happened to Languoreth up to this point in the tale. You’re taken out of the overall story as you try to figure out where you are.
This isn’t something I personally have a problem with. If you’re going to read a series, you start from the beginning. That’s just common sense. The problem is when you may not realize it’s the second book in a series. The blurb of The Forgotten Kingdom tries to make it clear that it’s a sequel, but sometimes that can be overlooked in skimming to see what the main story is about.
By reading the first book, you’ll feel more of a connection to the stories.
Continuing multiple viewpoints
I love when books have multiple viewpoints. It allows me to get to know the individual characters better. Sticking to just one viewpoint means you’re limited in knowing what the individual character knows. Look at Outlander for example. The first book is purely told from Claire’s point of view, so you only hear of Jamie’s escapades without her through him telling her the events that happened. You have no idea what Frank is doing in the 20th century while she’s stuck in the past.
That’s not the problem with The Forgotten Kingdom. Like the first book, Park offers a look at the various main characters. We get to see Languoreth stuck in her prison and Lailoken on the road. Angharad gets more focus, and there’s a chance to get to know new people through her.
You do have to pay attention to the tops of the chapters though to know whose story you’re reading next. This is just a small problem with multiple viewpoints, but one you get used to—and one you’ll already be used to with The Lost Queen trilogy.
Filled with history and magic
When books are set in the past, they can sometimes get a little too bogged down by historical facts. One of the reasons I adore books in the deep past is that real history isn’t as well known. It’s easier to just follow the story instead of being too overwhelmed by the historical elements within it.
Then there’s the magic, which reminds us that this is a fantasy book. It blends the worlds of reality and lore together in a beautiful way, but it remains grounded throughout. There’s always the risk that magic can seem unbelievable and take you out of the story, but The Forgotten Kingdom manages to balance everything well.
It helps that there’s the use of battle scenes and the story of Angharad finding her way back to safety. The book is a page-turner, making you feel for each of the main characters and desperate to see everyone reunite, even if it feels impossible.
There’s plenty of emotion. While we know what is happening on the battlefield, Languoreth doesn’t and that drives us through her chapters. We get a chance to see through her eyes, feel what she’s feeling. Pike does such a wonderful job with the descriptions to draw a reader in.
Just like the first book, you can bet there’s a miny cliffhanger at the end of the second book. You’ll eagerly anticipate the third installment in the series.
Star rating: 4.5 out of 5
If you love historical fiction with some fantasy elements, this is for you. For fans of the Camelot stories, you’ll want to check out The Lost Queen trilogy.
What are you reading right now? What do you think of The Forgotten Kingdom? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
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