Review : Red Tigress by Amélie Wen Zhao (Illumicrate edition)

« We all have monsters in our minds, but it takes courage and perseverance to defeat them. »

Red Tigress and Blood Heir by Amélie Wen Zhao
  • Release date : March 2nd 2021
  • Publishing house : HarperVoyager UK
  • Series : Blood Heir
  • Pages : 437
  • Book 3 : Crimson Reign
  • First review :

Spoilers ahead

Ana Mikhailov is the only surviving member of the royal family of Cyrilia. She has no army, no title, and no allies, and now she must find a way to take back the throne or risk the brutal retribution of the empress. Morganya is determined to establish a new world order on the spilled blood of non-Affinites. Ana is certain that Morganya won’t stop until she kills them all.

Ana’s only chance at navigating the dangerous world of her homeland means partnering with Ramson Quicktongue again. But the cunning crime lord has schemes of his own. For Ana to find an army, they must cross the Whitewaves to the impenetrable stone forts of Bregon. Only, no one can be certain what they will find there.

A dark power has risen. Will revolution bring peace–or will it only paint the streets in more blood. 

Characters :

Ana Mikhailov : Having no army, no important allies, Ana embarks on a quest to win back her throne. I’ve loved how fierce and determined Ana is and the way she loves her kingdom. She would do anything to save her people. She knows how to set her priorities straight, despite Ramson and her getting closer. She finally gets a handle on her blood power and we discover new ways to use it, such as healing for instance. I’m also sad as to what happened at the end, with Ana losing her Affinite. I really hope she’ll get it back ! I’ve liked her growth in this book, she became more of a leader.

“She was Anastacya Mikhailov, blood Affinite and rightful Empress of Cyrilia. And she would fight for her people.”

Ramson Quicktongue : Ramson has got a long way since the first book. He’s more caring, humane, even though he still has that shell around him. His relationship with Ana has deepened quite a lot and what happens at the end of the book between them was clear once you get there, but I thought it would end otherwise.

Coming back in his country, seeing his family again requires courage. What has happened to this family is very sad, his father saying that Ramson’s mother was a whore, ignoring Ramson, his sister becoming crazy because of what was done to her and so on.

“He would turn his back, once and for all, on this strange chapter of a story he’d never meant to play in, and a princess he’d never meant to fall for.”

Linn and Kais : We get to know more about her in this book ! It was so sad to read about her life, about her thoughts of revenge. I think she’s found a good ally to rely on and to guide her.

Kais has really been supportive of her despite the mistakes he’s made in the first book and this one. I think a lot of people would have done the same thing if his/her mother was being held captive and threatened to be killed if Kais did not obey. But he realises this behaviour is a disgrace to his mother and agrees to follow Ana.

Story :

The book opens up right after Empress Morganya’s decision to crack down on people without Affinite abilities. Obviously, people against her reign are also included. And with almost no friends, no armies, no help, we follow her journey to win her throne back.

Firstly, I was really glad to discover a new area and to discover more about Ramson’s homeland, even if he’s gone through a lot of things during his childhood. This change of scenery allowed me to see him and other characters in a new light. We learn a lot about some of his choices, why he’s that way and the fact that he’s torn between his identities.

« Some rulers’ reigns were forged with steel, some with gold, and some with might. And mine, Ana thought, closing her eyes. Mine is forged in blood.« 

The main villain of the book, Sorcha (Ramson’s sister), was really interesting and disturbing. I guess she is what Ana could have been if she hadn’t met some people or if she had made different choices. Madness got to her because of her childhood and I can’t help but feel a bit sad for her, even after all she’s done.

All along the book, Ana wrestles with what kind of leader she wants to be. Being a leader means making a lot of sacrifices, and she’s trying to know just how much she is willing to sacrifice for her people.

Note : 4 sur 5.

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