After dropping The Rogue Elf series at book two, I moved on to something else. The City of Veils promised a book that should be lighter in nature – a princess-turned-vigilante is to become a queen. Well, it was a fun read for sure.
The premise is quite simple: Brynna had run from being married for alliances and, for a couple of years, lived as a masked protector of the innocent right below everyone’s noses, in the town where her brother and father lived none the wiser. But now, her father and her brother are dead. And Brynna is to rule the town now…
The book starts on quite a hilarious note – Brynna’s language is more fit for the vigilante she lived as rather than a princess, and her recent past matches it just as well. Laryssa introduces herself like this: “My dark room held very little—a wardrobe with a few tunics for the day, a tub for washing myself and my weapons, and a mattress. There was already a form sleeping there—Tasha, the butcher’s son. We had a nice arrangement—he never asked where I disappeared to (nor anything else about me), and on occasion, he gave me a few minutes of stilted lovemaking.” Definitely a fitting behavior for a princess.
Oh, and yes. This book is in first-person PoV, which isn’t my favorite, but it felt quite fitting for this book, especially as the murder mystery is a story that benefits from very limited reader’s knowledge (to keep the reader knowing as much as the MC).
Soon, she’s captured by Felix, the Captain of the Royal Guard, to be put on the throne where she now belongs, to much of her grumbling. The transition is tough for both her and Felix, as well as anyone involved – and a source of many hilarious moments. Brynna has to learn the matters of the court while Felix gets a limited view of her past life as she tries to stick with her original goal, to expose and end Beswick, the businessman who’s swindling anyone and making her town little more than a large mob of his debtors.
As time goes, it’s obvious that both the situation at the court, the murder of her family (where she may soon be the next target), and the Beswick situation are connected, that nothing is as simple as it seems, that there are double-agents other than her. And that traitors may be hidden where you expect them the least…
I’ve read the first 80% of the book in just four day, then delayed the ending a bit for various reasons. All in all, it’s a fast-paced lighthearted book that had caught my attention quite well, even though there are few fantasy elements. So, not exactly my usual read yet I’ve found it catchy.