More Like A Crystal of Tears and Agony | A Crystal of Time

Crystal of Time (The School for Good and Evil: The Camelot Years, #2) by Soman Chainani
Publisher: HarperCollins
Release date: March 5th, 2019
Genres: Fantasy, MG, YA
Pages: 624
Source: Bought it
In this fifth instalment in Soman Chainani's New York Times bestselling fantasy series, The School for Good and Evil, Sophie, Agatha, and their friends must find a way to overthrow the sinister evil that twists lies into the truth and seeks to rewrite their story.

A false king has claimed the throne of Camelot, sentenced Tedros to death, and forced Sophie to be his queen. Only Agatha manages to escape.

Now Agatha and the students at the School for Good and Evil must find a way to restore Tedros to his throne and save Camelot . . . before all of their fairy tales come to a lethal end.

I don't even know where to begin!

I have been waiting for this book to come out FOREVER, no kidding. The cliffhanger on the previous book made me as crazy as a duck on fire. As soon as the pre-order announcement came out on twitter, I practically ran to my Kindle and pre-ordered it on the same day. I've never felt more invested in something harder than I have this series. Thanks to Soman Chainani for that, I guess.

Before we begin the review, let me summarize the book for you. Basically, a lot of characters are imprisoned since the end of Quests for Glory (including Tedros, but excluding Agatha, but sorta including Sophie). So, their only hope for escape is Agatha. However, she can't save everyone on her own and has to look for help. BUT, there's no one she can ask for help from since basically, every kingdom except a few is on the false king's side.

So, let's begin the review, shall we?

I love how well-thought every single thing in this book is! 

Every detail, every conversation, every sideways glance are written specifically for the purpose of making you cry your heart out. Our beloved heroes and heroines are constantly in mortal danger. Whenever you feel like they've escaped from a living hell, they fall into another death trap. You can't relax at all while reading because there's not even one relaxing moment in this book! There are also plot twists everywhere that would spin your head around and make you question what's the point of making theories or assumptions or predictions about this book when you will ALWAYS get every single one wrong.

Not to mention, the plot was so fast-paced despite its 624 pages. One thing after another just keeps on happening but not at the rate that overwhelms you. Everything flows so smoothly and reading chapters after chapters feel like a breeze. The thing that I love about this series is that it's LONG and you can read without fear of finishing it way too quickly or soon. But when you've reached the last page, you can't help but ask for more.

I love how strong the bond of friendship between Sophie and Agatha is!

"So she went back to Rhian and his monster brother...for me? Sophie, the saint? Sophie, the selfless? Wonder why she wasn't in the School for Good. Oh, I remember. She was too busy trying to kill us all."
"Sophie is unpredictable," Agatha conceded. "And we don't know why she went back or what she's up to. But we know she's trying to help us. That's why she gave us that question. It's the mission she wants us to focus on while she focuses on hers." 
Every single time Tedros doubts Sophie's loyalty, Agatha stands up for her! EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.  She always gives Sophie the benefit of the doubt and not many people can give her that. She knows Sophie like the back of her hand and believes her even if the whole world is against her.

However, that's not the case with Agatha's fiance. It annoys me how close-minded Tedros is when it comes to Sophie. Just because he sees her as a selfish, annoying, stuck-up girl, he refuses to believe that she's any different from the girl who betrayed him and left him for her own gain and safety three books back. He also disregards every nice thing and sacrifices that Sophie makes for him. She's changed! Deal with it! She's learned her lessons THE HARD WAY and now everyone likes her the way she is, except for Tedros.

Some characters don't get as much spotlight, but...

I'm talking about Nicola here. She's my second favorite character after Sophie in the previous book. She's a smartass and a badass. We get to read through her perspective a few times in Quests for Glory but there's not even one in this book. However, we get to read through Hort's perspectives many, many times! Through this POV it's obvious that he still loves Sophie despite her flaws and the fact that he has a girlfriend. I've actually been shipping them together ever since the second book. So imagine my surprise and happiness that they finally show their interest, albeit subtle, towards each other.
She knew Hort loved her. That he would always love her, no matter what terrible things she'd done to him, no matter how many awful boys she'd snogged, no matter whether he had a beautiful, awesome girlfriend or not. She knew that even with his heart pledged to Nicola, Hort would help her. That if she could just get him out of jail, he'd never let anything happen to her.

I hate Tedros more than ever.

I don't know, man. He's just so annoying and selfish and whiny in this book. I mean, I get it that that's how he is. He hasn't changed much. But, as I stated in my review, Tedros has significantly changed for the better in the previous book. So why does it feel like he downgrades to a world-class annoying brat here?! He even knows it himself!
Meanwhile, Agatha had escaped, Agatha had done everything, everything, everything. Had he done anything for her? Or anyone else? That's why he was in this room to begin with. That's why he'd lost his crown. Because he'd been so whiny, so self-involved, so entitled that he'd never stood up and done what a king was supposed to do: lead.

Congrats Soman Chainani for making me feel bad and actually care for the villain.

There, I said it. I mean, it's nothing new. He made me love Rafal way more than I was supposed to. Surely he was 100% capable of making me love Rhian too. 

We got one unexpected first POV from a character that we all love.

I'm not going to say who it is. But let me just tell you that a tear was shed at the end of the chapter.

In all, I'd say that this book will bring out the best and worst in you. You will scream like a lunatic, laugh like a serial killer about to kill its prey, and cry like a widow left for war. Just prepare a nice comfy chair because it's going to be one heck of a bumpy ride.

My rating:  ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ 

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