Children of Virtue and Vengeance by Tomi Adeyemi – Thoughts

Book two in the Orisha trilogy and the sequel for ‘Children of Blood and Bone’. I was expecting a lot from the second book since the first one had been a smashing debut that I had been completely pulled into. And like all things that I have great expectations with, this one left me disappointed. If you are new to this series then you can also check out my review for the first book, Children of Blood and Bone here.

Now I have to warn readers that it’s nearly impossible to talk about this book without giving away any spoilers and I do need to talk about my feelings for the second book. So if you haven’t read the book yet, please don’t read any further. My spoiler-free two pence thought on this is, that it didn’t match my expectations and there were a lot of frustrating moments and things happening with the characters in the book, many questions unanswered and new things added in. The pacing was super fast and the action scenes were brilliant. But those were the two things I liked. So come back to thus post once you’ve read the book, so we can discuss more 😊

*****SPOILERS AHEAD!!!!******

Things I liked about book 2 of the Odisha trilogy:

  • Just look at that cover!! Zelie looks absolutely smashing!! She reminds me of the younger Rihanna in that picture 😉🥰
  • The pacing of the story.. my gosh there were so many twists and turns that you will not have a single second to be bored
  • The world building and the action scenes – I could literally picture all the war scenes that are in this book. I think there were some talks about adapting this trilogy onto screen, so I can totally see the appeal. Quite similar to The Hunger Games Book 2 and Book 3, I’d say
  • The fact that Inan is alive and we get mama Agba back!! Woo hoo!
  • I was still in awe of the political aspects and perspectives in this book and series overall. We can draw so many parallels to ruling and war or peace from this book to o ur own world where each kind of ruler has his or her own conviction about how to rule and being peace in a realm/country. It’s a really hard job I must say..

Now, for the part I want to write about and vent- the things that left me frustrated and angry:

  • The one thing I really wanted to cry about was what the author makes Amari do. I was team Amari in book 1. I absolutely loved her arc in the first book – the one person who doesn’t have magic, is not popular but still fights her way and knows what is right and, is kind. In this book, the author literally broke my heart in the end with what she makes Amari do. There is no coming back from that. There is no justifying genocide, ever. Even if you miraculously revive everyone, genocide is absolutely unforgivable in my world. People can’t just get away with , “I had no choice”, or “That was a mistake and I’ll sacrifice my life for that”, and be forgiven after mass genocide, especially one that you’ve done willingly and knowingly. There is always a choice. We don’t forgive the Queen Nehanda for doing the same, then how can we forgive Amari? I was completely shattered for her after that scene. I wanted her to be greater than Danearys from the HBO adaptation of Game of Thrones, but I don’t know what the author has in mind for her. I just can’t see myself going back to team Amari after this and will have to wait till the last book to see how the author salvages Amari
  • Inan- my man, how long will it take for you to get your shit together? Wasn’t the whole of the first book and being responsible for the death of your girlfriend’s father enough to make you see sense? Either hate the majis and be a strong king or fight for them and be a strong king. All the chapters with Inan were so frustrating and boring! I had hoped a better redemption arc for Inan in the second book, where he would have better conviction in his thoughts and decisions, but what comes, comes in too late.
  • What the hell is that romance angle for Zelie and Roen??? I do not ship that pair. I mean I get that Roen has all the bad guy with a good heart characteristic that makes for a typical romantic pairing but Zelie still clearly is conflicted about her feelings for Inan and I couldn’t buy into Roen’s feelings for Zelie at all. There was a subtle hint that Roen was involved in some kind of double cross but had a last minute change of heart, so maybe they won’t end up together after all? We’ll see in the finale I guess
  • Why is Tzain in this book at all? Just to be Amari’s love interest? He had such a great role in the first book. I would’ve preferred if he had disappeared completely and gone on a separate quest than be present uselessly in this book
  • I was heartbroken to see Zelie and Amari’s friendship break so easily in this book. After all that they went through together, I was expecting to see a stronger bond between the two girls and was very upset to see them fight and say such hurtful things to each other. There can be kindness in grief and loss too and I refuse to accept that their trials took them apart. Trials are a test of a strong friendship. Yes, they don’t kill each other but they still have the thought and are willing to sacrifice each other for ‘the greater good’. I didn’t get that either.
  • There were too many unanswered questions for me regarding the powers of the centres in this book. Maybe the final book will have some answers
  • Why the abrupt cliffhanger?!!! Argghhh! I’m reading another trilogy by VE Scwab in parallel, and Id say authors could follow her lead when it comes to the ending of a book with sequels intended. Or even the way Leigh Bardugo ends her books, which are parts of series. You can always finish one story and have an opening to the next one, without a crazy cliffhanger.

Whew, feels good to write that all down. I just needed to get my thoughts out and I completely understand if you don’t agree with my thoughts or have different opinions😊 In fact, I’d love to discuss more and broaden my perspective😊 I will be reading the final book anyway, and what I really want is Inan to grow up, Inan and Zelie being together, Amari finding another love interest who is more worthy for her, a democracy with chosen leaders- maybe Tzain could be the democratic prime minister since he has no interest to rule, and some way to control magic. Nice clean happy ending lol..

3 thoughts on “Children of Virtue and Vengeance by Tomi Adeyemi – Thoughts

  1. I never actually finished the first book because I got bored, so I had to read your full review to know what you felt with this one…
    Great review Prachi… you expressed your frustrations perfectly while also taking about everything you loved… very well balanced review 👍👍👍 but I’m sad that it didn’t live up to your expectations..

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Sahi .. yeah I was quite sad too.. I usually have really low expectations from books because I love all books but this one was a first. I hope the finale has some redemption..

      Liked by 1 person

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