The Rose and the Thorn by Michael J. Sullivan (The Riyria Chronicles #2)

Hey guys!
Another day, another Riyria review. The other day I talked about the first installment in the Riyria Chronicles, so guess what: today we’re going to tackle the second one. I’m expecting it to be just as good as every other Sullivan book I’ve read so far, so let’s see if that is the case!

The Plot (according to Goodreads):


For more than a year Royce Melborn has tried to forget Gwen DeLancy, the woman who saved him and his partner Hadrian Blackwater from certain death. Unable to get her out of his mind, the two thieves return to Medford but receive a very different reception — Gwen refuses to see them. The victim of abuse by a powerful noble, she suspects that Royce will ignore any danger in his desire for revenge. By turning the thieves away, Gwen hopes to once more protect them. What she doesn’t realize is what the two are capable of — but she’s about to find out.

The Rating:

HOW GOOD WAS THIS?! I loved every single page of it.
While The Crown Tower detailed on specific heist the guys pulled (which was mentioned several times throughout the Riyria Revelations), this one was a bit different. In The Rose and the Thorn we get so much backstory on the events happening in Melangar before the Riyria Revelations series takes place. I’m skirting ’round spoilers here but there’s a political conspiracy going on and now we finally learn how far back all of that went. Who was pulling the strings.

It does include events that were referenced in other books but it wasn’t just one specific job Hadrian and Royce did. I really wasn’t expecting the novel to be like this but I loved it. The story was intricate and smart. You can tell how much thought went into this, not a single logic hole in sight!

Gwen also gets a bit more backstory, even though maybe not as prominently featured as in the last book. The dynamic between her and Royce is adorable and I’ll never get tired of reading about them. In this novel, we also learn how my two boys met Albert, who we also know from the later installments. It’s such a little detail that Sullivan makes sure to incorporate this character and give him a proper story as well. this is not a main character or anything like that, and I really appreciate Sullivan for making the effort.

Also, despite the fact that you’ll most likely know how the big events in this one turn out – based on the fact that it wasn’t mentioned several times in the other books – you’ll still be surprised a lot. There are so many intricate plot twists and turns! Honestly, it’s rare that I enjoy a series of novels this much and can’t come up with even a single complaint.

If you haven’t read any of Sullivan’s books so far, do yourself a favor and get one right now. Everything about it is amazing: the characters, the worldbuilding, the story. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll be entertained!

Did you read this book? Let me know in the comments what you think!

Follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Bloglovin‘, Tumblr, Goodreads, Letterboxd or Instagram!

One thought on “The Rose and the Thorn by Michael J. Sullivan (The Riyria Chronicles #2)

  1. Pingback: Wrapping it up for January! | The Punk Theory

Drop me a Line :-)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.