The war is over.
The war has just begun.
Three times throughout its history, Nikan has fought for its survival in the bloody Poppy Wars. Though the third battle has just ended, shaman and warrior Rin cannot forget the atrocity she committed to save her people. Now she is on the run from her guilt, the opium addiction that holds her like a vice, and the murderous commands of the fiery Phoenix—the vengeful god who has blessed Rin with her fearsome power.
Though she does not want to live, she refuses to die until she avenges the traitorous Empress who betrayed Rin’s homeland to its enemies. Her only hope is to join forces with the powerful Dragon Warlord, who plots to conquer Nikan, unseat the Empress, and create a new republic.
But neither the Empress nor the Dragon Warlord are what they seem. The more Rin witnesses, the more she fears her love for Nikan will force her to use the Phoenix’s deadly power once more.
Because there is nothing Rin won’t sacrifice to save her country . . . and exact her vengeance.
The Dragon Republic is book two in The Poppy War trilogy. It picks up pretty much where book one left off and doesn’t do any form of recapping at the beginning (so don’t be like me and wait a year between reading The Poppy War and this one. There was a lot to remember!)
What I loved most about Rin in the first book was her ability to adapt to nearly any situation and that she always believed she was doing the right thing. That still holds true in one—and she’s faced with even more battle and bloodshed that ever before. Even with the power of the Phoenix behind her, the odds are stacked against her and the Cike’s other shamans. And while I thought I knew where this story was going…
…the author did a fantastic job of throwing in some major unexpected twists toward the end. I’m still trying to process one of them. I’m not sure if I’m angrier about that event or my failure to see it coming, but it’s definitely going to change things for Rin in book three.
That being said, I am not waiting before jumping into the next book. I need to know what happens next. I need to know who is going to survive. And I need answers. There is so much left unresolved at this juncture.
I think I liked this book even more than The Poppy War.
Side note: I always have a hard time reviewing sequels. There is so much more I want to talk about, especially with this book, but I do not want to ruin the experience for anyone who hasn’t read book 1.