My Rating: 4 stars
Age Category: Middle Grade
Type of romance: no romance
The exciting follow-up book in the fantastical duology for ages 10-14 by NYT bestselling author, Kelley Armstrong.
Rowan is now the Royal Monster Hunter, and her twin brother, Rhydd, is destined to be king. But her mother’s cousin Heward is still determined that his children be the ones to inherit the titles, and will stop at nothing to show that Rowan and Rhydd are too immature to properly lead. After the gryphon that Rowan captured in Book One gives birth but then dies, Rowan is left with a baby gryphon she knows she cannot keep. And it grows faster than anyone can imagine . . .
In order to save face after an accident involving the troublesome gryphon, Rowan, with the help of her friends Dain and Alianor, along with an entourage of monstrous companions, must make a journey to the mountains to release the gryphon back into the wild. What starts off as a simple enough task soon becomes a dangerous quest, as the group encounters numerous rare and deadly monsters along the way, including wyverns and ceffyl-dwrs. Nothing is easy when you’re a “monster magnet” like Rowan.
Can she prove herself worthy of the title of Royal Monster Hunter? Find out in this exciting second book in the Royal Guide to Monster Slaying duology!
I really enjoyed book 1 in this series and excitedly jumped into book 2. This was another great read. I really like this world filled with monsters and seeing Rowen navigate it with her friends, both human and monsters. I like how she tries to understand the monsters, but also can make tough decisions. She has her flaws, but she’s also determined and works hard to fix things.
This was another action packed adventure read. Rowen and her companions again meet countless monsters and dangerous situations. There are battles, but also more strategic solutions and I especially liked the whole gryphon situation and how they handled that and how she read their body language. There also is one sad scene, but at the same time it was the right decision and I am impressed with how Rowan handled it.
I liked Rowan, she makes for a great main character. She’s quite mature for her age, but that makes sense with her role of being the kingdom’s monster hunter. I really like how she approaches the different situations and I like seeing her interact with the monsters. She’s capable, but also has fear and gets hurt at times. She’s not afraid to admit her mistakes and takes responsibility.
The side characters are great as well and I like how we get a good feel for them. From her friends Allianor and Dain to her brother Rhydd, her mother and Wilmot. They all have a role to play in the story and I like seeing how they interact. I also like how Allianor and Dain both interact with Rowan and how a difficult situation between them got resolved by talking things through, I liked that. And then there’s a whole group of monster characters as well. I like seeing how Malric shows a bit more affection. And ofcourse Jacko and Sunniva. And she makes some new monster friends as well in this book. Tiera was awesome too.
It’s so fun to read about all the different monsters in this world and I like how the author really makes them come alive. Each monster has their own habits and behavior and I liked learning more about them. It’s also great how Rowan treat it, despite the series title they rarely slay monsters and instead try to find the best solution for both human and monsters.
I liked how we got to see a bit more of the world as well in this book, from the different clans to the different places they visit and how we see how some people are affected by the monsters or how they treat them as well.
To summarize: This was a great sequel. I really liked following Rowan and her friends as they set off on another adventure. Rowan is a great character, I like how capable and responsibly she is, but she still has fear and can be hurt as well. My favorite part is seeing her interact with the monsters. There is a great group of side character, both human and monsters. I liked seeing more of the world and more monsters in this book, I like how each monster has their own behavior and habits. I had a lot of fun reading this book and I can only hope there will be more books in this series as I would love more stories in this world.