Bright We Burn (The Conqueror’s Saga #3), Kiersten White

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Lada loved Wallachia above all else

Haunted by the sacrifices he made in Constantinople, Radu is called back to the new capital. Mehmed is building an empire, becoming the sultan his people need. Lada’s rule of absolute justice has created a Wallachia free of crime. But Lada won’t rest until everyone knows that her country’s borders are inviolable. 

This book is the third in a series. Read my review of Now I Rise.

* * *
3 / 5

Bright We Burn is the beautiful and tragic end to the Conqueror’s Saga trilogy, and the conclusion of Lada, Radu, and Mehmed’s tale. I don’t think it was quite as good as the first two, but it was still amazing! This trilogy is an absolute journey, one that I thoroughly recommend that any reader undertake.

She was a prince. She had cut through years and lives to get there

Constantinople has been conquered by Mehmed. Radu has lost the only other person he thought that he might ever be able to truly trust with his heart, as well as his beloved wife. Lada has crowned herself Prince of Wallachia, but she is determined for her country to belong to her and her alone. When Mehmed sends envoys to his vassal state, Lada sends back their heads in a box and thus begins the war between the Empire and Wallachia; Lada, Radu and Mehmed are drawn back into each other’s orbit.

Bright We Burn feels like an ending. Tensions rise as Lada is embroiled in guerilla warfare and devious political manoeuvrings, as all the while the only people she trusts are killed. Lada is still crafty, clever, vicious and likeable in an unlikeable sort of way. She gives everything she is to Wallachia, and everything she is ugly and brutal and soaked in blood. Mehmed is still, to me, the least likeable of the trio – still irrevocably drawn to Lada but unable to dismiss the defiance that Wallachia represents. He is lonely and alone, the Sultan above all else and when he reaches out to Radu, Radu finally stops trying to reach back.

“Then do not aim for greatness. Aim for goodness. And however you get there will be the right path for you, my sweet Radu”

I think perhaps Radu was my favourite character in this book. He finally realises what he is and what he wants, and he finally finds happiness. I love Radu. He finds his own measure of craftiness and his own political power to fit alongside his pure spiritual faith. I did enjoy Bright We Burn a lot, but most of my enjoyment was down to the characters – plot-wise this is just a big ol’ war. A big war with lots of twists and turns, but a big war nonetheless. The losses stopped being so emotional after a while.

I loved Bright We Burn and I disliked it. It was a good ending to an incredible trilogy and I really haven’t read anything like it, yet I still wanted more for the finale.

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