Ruin of Stars by Linsey Miller
As one of the Queen’s elite assassins, Sal finally has the power, prestige, and permission to hunt down the lords who killed their family. But Sal still has to figure out who the culprits are. They must enlist the help of some old friends and enemies while ignoring a growing distaste for the queen and that the charming Elise is being held prisoner by her father.
But there’s something terribly wrong in the north. Talk of the return of shadows, missing children, and magic abounds. As Sal takes out the people responsible for their ruined homeland, Sal learns secrets and truths that can’t be forgotten.
Ruin of Stars is the second book in the Mask of Shadows duology. The book picks up right where Mask of Shadows pick up. Sal is now the Opal for the Queen had been granted permission to seek out the people responsible that helped kill his family.
Revenge, magic and assassinations, the internal struggle of right and wrong, if killing makes you just as bad a person or it can break you and change you. These are all things Sal struggles with during the story. Sal was doing everything in their power as an Opal to potentially stop another war and finding out the truth about Shadows and magic.
Maud seemed to have a more vital role this time around which made my happy, she’s snarky, strong and honest. She tries her best to keep Sal in line despite everything they do against her advice.
There is a good amount of action and killing in this one, but not as much as the first book, I guess since there are fewer people out to kill Sal since they are now the Honorable Opal.
One issue I had was that yes, we know that Sal is gender-fluid, but it felt like it was more forced this time around and every time it could mentioned when discussing the different nations and how they feel about those “outside of the normal.”
The best part of the book in my view was the Epilogue, did not expect that ending.
About the Author:
Originally from Arkansas, Linsey Miller has previously worked as a crime lab intern, neuroscience lab assistant, and pharmacy technician. She is currently an MFA candidate represented by Rachel Brooks of Bookends Literary. Her debut novel MASK OF SHADOWS is the first in a fantasy duology out now (8/29/17) from Sourcebooks Fire. The sequel RUIN OF STARS is coming out August of 2018. She can be found writing about science and magic anywhere there is coffee.