She is a princess. When the Indigo Kingdom conquered her homeland, Wilhelmina and other orphaned children of nobility were taken to Skyvale, the Indigo Kingdom’s capital. Ten years later, they are the Ospreys, experts at stealth and theft. With them, Wilhelmina means to take back her throne.
She is a spy. Wil and her best friend, Melanie,
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In 1211, Genghis Khan’s tiny army of 2,000 was vastly outnumbered by the Jin army, 500,000 strong. The week before the battle, the entire Jin army got food poisoning (they were trying to do a cleanse before the big day by eating more probiotics, as it turned out, not all things were meant to be fermented, least of all, pork). Suffering from bouts of severe diarrhea, the Jin army fled (leaving behind unspeakable trails of…unmentionable things), resulting in a decisive victory for Khan(h…just
In 1942, Jackson Pollock got dumped by his girlfriend. “You’re just, like, so boring,” she said. “Why do you have to paint butterflies and kittens all the time?” A devastated Pollock spent the night drinking. In the morning, the wealthy art patron Peggy Guggenheim arrived. They had arranged a meeting for her to review his art. She came into the studio to find an entire studio of canvases with paint splattered haphazardly all over them. In his drunken state, Pollock had destroyed his canvases. “Brilliant!” Guggenheim exclaimed. “This is revolutionary, I’ve never seen anything like it!”
“Uh, yeah, I had a…vision” Pollock muttered. “Totally meant to do that.” Pollock went on to become one of the most well-known artists of the 20th century.
In 1796, Edward Jenner was fucking a milkmaid in the barn. His wife burst into the barn. “EDDIE, WHAT THE FUCK?!” she screeched. Edward quickly scrambled to his feet, “I’m doing this…for science!” he stuttered. “I’m, uh, trying to do an experiment! See? Look at this…cow! I was just trying to see if the…err, stuff…from…that cow could cure her…vag—po—cow pox! Yeah! That’s it!”
“With your pants down?!” she screamed. “Don’t question the methods of science!” he retorted.
Edward Jenner went on to become the father of modern vaccines, his first invention the vaccination for smallpox.
In case you didn’t know, those stories were all bullshit, wrenched from the depths of my demented imagination. Naturally, all of those historical figures were brilliant ones, revolutionary strategist, artist, scientist. They worked hard, it took time for them to develop their skill and methodology.
The point is that their accomplishments would have held so much less meaning if they had stumbled across them through no effort of their own, if their achievements were pure, dumb luck.
In books, I want characters who are admirable, who succeed through sheer brilliance and plotting. I don’t want the use of deus ex machina and chance to result in WIN.
And that’s exactly how the characters in this book succeed: sheer good fortune, the complete idiocy of everyone else. The main characters essentially danced their way down Easy Street.
Want to infiltrate a kingdom and get close to its royalty? Just pretend you’re a duchess from a foreign land. Sure, nobody will doubt you at all. Indeed, they don’t.
“Lady Julianna, Lady Melanie, you’re both welcome in Skyvale Palace for as long as you’d like to stay. Our home is your home.”
Easy as pie.
Want a top-secret map?
“A map. I want to know which windows lead to which rooms. I want to know where the armories are, where guards are stationed, and even where King Terrell sleeps at night. I want to know everything about that place.”
Your enemies will literally hand it to you.
“The Indigo Kingdom is so kind to us. Whatever we require for our reclaiming of Aecor will be provided.”
Need to locate a secret map? It’s literally marked down for you.
“On my way out, I glanced again at the wall map, and the mysterious scribbles on the western border of Liadia.
They read confidential and debated.”
Like, are you fucking kidding me?
I like books with admirable heroes and heroines. I like to see them succeed through skill, intelligence, and effort. This book has no merit.
… Is that it? Is that all this book had to deliver? I am feeling more than underwhelmed by The Orphan Queen right now.
It was a complete disappointment. From start to finish. As a matter of fact, the only thing I found myself appreciating was the writing. Pretty and well fit to a fantasy story, it might have been the only thing that kept me on reading.
There was nothing I actually ‘‘hated’’ but it is rare for me to ‘‘hate’’ something inside a book, unless a character, scene, relationship, world-bu