Hello everybody. Today’s post is a spoiler free review of Laura Sebastian’s YA Fantasy novel Castles in their Bones. This post is also part of a book tour organized by TBR And Beyond Tours. You’ll find more information about the tour at the end of this post, as well as links to all of the other blogs that are also participating in it.
A spellbinding story of three princesses and the destiny they were born for: seduction, conquest, and the crown. Immerse yourself in the first book in a new fantasy trilogy from the author of the New York Times bestselling Ash Princess series.
Empress Margaraux has had plans for her daughters since the day they were born. Princesses Sophronia, Daphne, and Beatriz will be queens. And now, age sixteen, they each must leave their homeland and marry their princes.
Beautiful, smart, and demure, the triplets appear to be the perfect brides—because Margaraux knows there is one common truth: everyone underestimates a girl. Which is a grave mistake. Sophronia, Daphne, and Beatriz are no innocents. They have been trained since birth in the arts of deception, seduction, and violence with a singular goal—to bring down monarchies— and their marriages are merely the first stage of their mother’s grand vision: to one day reign over the entire continent of Vesteria.
The princesses have spent their lives preparing, and now they are ready, each with her own secret skill, and each with a single wish, pulled from the stars. Only, the stars have their own plans—and their mother hasn’t told them all of hers.
Life abroad is a test. Will their loyalties stay true? Or will they learn that they can’t trust anyone—not even each other?
My review of Castles in their Bones
Compelling characters and multiple POVs
Sophronia, Daphne, and Beatriz were very compelling leading ladies. It was great to see them grow as characters, especially as secrets start to unravel and the sisters begin to question certain things that they are confronted with. Also, given how the book is structured, with chapters alternating between the sisters, we get to know the sisters, as well as learn about the different courts in a way that feels well-paced and exciting. So, despite having to learn a lot of information, including character dynamics, court politics and things to do with the world in general, the book never actually feels info-dumpy.
Magic, royalty and political intrigue
The story unfolds in the way of a dark fairy tale, with its mix of magic and royal intrigue. If, like me, you’re a sucker for books that fit the princesscore and royalcore aesthetics, you’ll love the setting of this book. And if you like your fantasy books with a lot of political intrigue, you’ll definitely enjoy all the schemes and conflicts that happen throughout the book. Things don’t always go according to plan and there are lots of twists and turns throughout the book, which keeps the story very engaging from start to finish. I also found the magic system, which is based on the stars, to be very enchanting. I can’t wait to see more of that in the next book.
Slow burn romance
While romance isn’t the main focus of the story – that would be badass princesses doing badass princess stuff – I do enjoy a good slow burn romance and the book does deliver on that front. I definitely can’t wait to see how things evolve in the next book.
Overall, Castles in their Bones is a fantastic series debut with amazing main characters, a very interesting world and a mind-blowing ending that will leave you wanting to get your hands on the next book ASAP. It’s going to be a slooow wait till Book 2!
About the author
Laura Sebastian was born and raised in South Florida (the Redlands and Key Largo) and has always loved telling stories–many apologies to her little brother who often got in trouble because of them. She got her BFA in Performing Arts from Savannah College of Art and Design before realizing she preferred the other side of storytelling.
When Laura isn’t writing, she’s probably reading, cooking/baking, or buying more clothes than her overstuffed closet can fit. She currently lives in London with her two dogs, Neville and Circe.
You can follow Laura online at the following:
Goodreads: Laura Sebastian