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The Black Jewels by Anne Bishop

Complete series with 9 books and a short story
Genres: dark fantasy

Reading Order:

1. Daughter of the Blood
2. Heir to the Shadows
3. Queen of the Darkness
4. The Invisible Ring
5. Dreams Made Flesh(novella collection)
6. Tangled Webs
7. The Shadow Queen
8. Shalador’s Lady
9. Twilight’s Dawn (novella collection)
10. The Queen’s Bargain

Original Trilogy:

Blurb:

In the original trilogy, Jaenelle is a kid, the most powerful creature to exist in some time, if ever. She is the one that was forteold to be coming, and Saetan, Lucivar, and most especially Daemon has been waiting for for a long, long time. They have been waiting because those of the Blood have corrupted over time, becoming cruel over time. They’ve allowed their duties to be forgotten. As Jaenelle grows up, she becomes more and more able to stop this evil, but at what cost?

Original Trilogy Review:

The original trilogy is exactly the type of series I have been looking for for a while now. This series review actually took me months to put together, because for months every time I thought about it, just break down crying. In fact if I think too hard about certain parts I will start crying again – I just can’t help it. I loved this series and saying goodbye hurt, and the way Bishop had us say goodbye hurt so goddamn much.

This is a dark fantasy series. This world is crazy horrible. The things that happen to the characters are horrible. Do not read this series if you want something happy and cheerful. Only read if you are looking for something that will make you depressed just to think about. The way Bishop weaves the threads of this series is fantastic.

Unfortunately, I do have to say that if you’re sensitive to certain topics you should avoid this series. There is a lot of rape that happens in this world, as well as child abuse. This is not a pretty world, and Bishop makes that very, very well known.

The main characters are amazing. Despite having some of the worst names ever, they’re so good. I love all of them. Jaenelle is so strong, and she has such a journey to get through. Saetan is the best dad ever, and Lucivar is the best brother Jaenelle could ever hope for. All of Jaenelle’s friends are amazing, and they are so, so funny. I’ll have tears flowing down my face because I’m upset at the events, but then one of her friends come in and I’ll be busting up laughing. And Daemon? Holy hell, that is a relationship to die for. Literally, if they have to. They go through Hell (not literally – but they could have if they had to) to be together. I love this couple.

Unfortunately, the villains leave something to be desired. They’re almost comical in nature. They have a very silly playbook. It sounds like something you would come across in a comic book villain, which you know won’t work because it is just so damn silly. The conversations they have is ridiculously comical, too. We see a fair amount of them, too, because Bishop really, really likes to show the villain’s point of view in her stories.

I really, really recommending reading the original trilogy.


Books 4-9

Blurb:

After Jaenelle and everyone has finished with the events in the trilogy, Bishop continues on. There is a prequel story about the last powerful Queen to oppose the evil, corrupted Queen. There are two novella collections. There is a book where Jaenelle creates a Haunted House. And, there is a duology that follows the events (somewhat) of the prequel. 

Review:

Honestly, I don’t really recommend most of this. The prequel was boring, and while the follow-up duology isn’t bad, it wasn’t what I wanted after reading the original trilogy. Hell, none of this is what I wanted after reading that trilogy. Almost everything afterward is disappointing because the trilogy is so strong. Also, the Haunted House book, I really still don’t understand why that was written.

However, I will recommend you to read Twilight’s Dawn if you like the original trilogy. You may not understand all of it because some of this might rely on you to have read other parts of the series (especially that damn Haunted House book), but it is the final goodbye. This is what made me cry so damn hard I was ill. This is what keeps me crying even to this day, months after reading the series.

Update: Book 10

Ten was worth reading if you’ve read book 9. For certain. It is setting up a new arc in the series.

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