I think I love today’s book about as much as I love dancing. Which is quite a bit for certain styles of dance. But only certain styles, so the book is better.

I love all of Tricia Mingerink’s books and her Beyond the Tales series is becoming one of my favourite series of fairytale retellings. (I have at least four favourites though.) Poison’s Dance is a wonderful continuation, following the characters I already love, along with a few new ones. 

I’ll try and hold off on the spoilers, but a few will slip in. And if you don’t want spoilers at all, I will just tell you to buy the book. Don’t even read the blurb. Just scroll down to just above the beautiful cover and that will tell you where to get the book. (Spoiler: It’s Amazon.)

A high king, trying his best to unify his kingdoms, a loyal bodyguard who is soon to be married and has already died too many times, a queen plotting to gain more power, a princess trying to be loyal to her kingdom and sister,  a curse that promises relief. High stakes, troubled consciences, awkward attempts at romance. all of that is in the book

Alex already had one near disastrous encounter with love and curses since his hundred year sleep. This time things are little more different. He’s more wary, less prideful. He gets more time to enjoy himself. Just imagine playing hide and seek for the first time. The younger princesses of Tuckawassee are darlings.

Princess Tamya is a princess I love. All she wants to do is help her people, she can see ways to do it, and she really doesn’t have the power. She knows her sister’s plans are wrong, but this is her sister, her queen, her kingdom and how can she betray her?

Queen Valinda is not a nice person or one I can feel much sympathy for. She does however get one particularly amusing line. “Welcome High King Alexander. We appreciate that you have condescended to visit us, your most disloyal subjects.” Yes, she’s that open about the state of affairs. No, she is not sorry. 

Alex moves further along the path to becoming a great man. (But not like Alexander the Great, because he’s not a role model when it comes to character or long life.) He has some very tough decisions to make and he’s learning not to be selfish. He actually has friendships now, proper two way friendships.

Daemyn Rand continues to be awesome and his relatives are the best allies anyone could want. (All 1000+ of them.) But hey, I would take someone as loyal as Daemyn without all that extra help. He and Alex make a great duo. 

Rosanna does have her part in the story, though she’s in the background for most of it, with Isi Degotaga by her side.

I could hardly put this book down when I was reading it. (I also didn’t have much time to spare if I was to review it today.) It was a fun an enjoyable read, along with being encouraging and having some depth to it.

Now it’s time to list all the spoilerish moments that I loved. Hugely major spoilers. Beginning now.

Alex turning himself in for his friends despite being the high king and having no heir. 

Valinda being shocked by Alex actually drinking the poison himself. (Don’t threaten poison if it doesn’t suit your plans for the person to die.)

The fact that this is a story where sacrificing yourself is shown as the better choice that sacrificing your friends. Pragmatically, it could have been argued this was a bad idea, but it was very much the right thing.

Alex just casually (by the end) using the Highest King’s strength to overcome the curse. And Alex in general pretending to be oblivious to the fact that they cursed him.

Alex calling Daemyn, Daemyn Rand of Tallahatchia.

Not a moment I love but a very touching one: Daemyn and Alex caring for a wounded Rosanna.

End spoilers.

So, buy it, read it, stick it on Goodreads. That’s what the book is for. The first book is currently free and the second is on sale if you read ebooks. I do, but these books are also on my ‘buy in paperback’ list, so I’m going to have to wait.

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About the Book

Isn’t the cover gorgeous?

If he falls to the lure of the curse, the dance might trap him forever.

Alex has survived his first year as high king. The new counsel has improved cooperation between the kingdoms, and peace seems achievable. When the Tuckawassee queen sends him an invitation he can’t refuse, Alex must once again face his greatest threat for the sake of peace.

Princess Tamya of Tuckawassee, along with her eleven sisters, has danced from sunset until sunrise every night of her life. It is her gift and her curse. When Queen Valinda wishes to use the power their cursed dance gives them to rule all of Tallahatchia, Tamya must decide if she will do what is right even if it betrays her own sister.

Daemyn Rand has survived a hundred years’ worth of battles. All he wants to do now is safely marry his princess. Will he be forced to choose between the love of his life and the high king he has loyally served for years? They have faced certain death before. This time, they might not make it out alive.

Don’t miss this re-envisioning of the Twelve Dancing Princesses fairy tale.

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About the Author

Tricia Mingerink is a twenty-something, book-loving, horse-riding country girl. She lives in Michigan with her family and their pack of pets. When she isn’t writing, she can be found pursuing backwoods adventures across the country.
Find her online at:  Website ||  Goodreads || Facebook || Twitter || Instagram || Amazon