Review – The Essence
  • Posted:
  • September 26, 2013

the essence

The Essence is the second book in The Pledge trilogy by Kimberly Derting. I read the first one a few years back and finally reread it in preparation to read books two and three. I was glad I did. I think if I would have gone into this book cold I would have been a very confused bookgeek. While I did not blow through this one as quickly as I did The Pledge the sequel is a great addition to the series.

Charlie has ascended to the Queenship of Ludania. She has the essence of the last Queen, Sabara, bonded within her soul. She tries her best to ignore Sabara’s presence but the Queen’s memories are many and persistent, and her persistent voice cannot be silenced. Meanwhile, Charlie adjusts to  her position as the new Queen. She passes many laws eradicating Sabara’s brutal reign but there is a growing movement against her ideals. The people do not want the changes that Charlie is legalizing. During this time of civil unrest Charlie must journey to an annual summit in the north. The journey is fraught with peril, particular when it becomes obvious that one of her own is against her.

There’s a lot of character development in this book, particularly with Charlie. She must learn to adapt to her new position or die trying. But there are many emotional perils that come with assuming the throne. The fact that Sabara has not disappeared proves problematic as well. Charlie keeps this to herself for most of the book, choosing to live with the constant turmoil within her as if nothing is wrong. This leads to many interesting developments in this book… including the dreaded Bermuda-Love-Triangle.

… Yes… there’s a second man. And no, it is not Aron.

Fans of the first book will be happy to see old favourites interspersed with a new cast of characters. Brooklyn in back and feistier than ever. Angelina and Zafir and Xander also make themselves known in this book. And, of course, there is Max, Charlie’s confidant and love.

This is definitely  a bridge book between the opening and the conclusion. However, it’s worth the read. I cannot wait to see what happens in book three, The Offering. Derting has a lot of ends to tie up.

4 out of 5 stars.

– BP

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