The Orphan Queen by Jodi Meadows

Title: The Orphan Queen
Author: Jodi Meadows
Series: The Orphan Queen #1
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Release Date: March 10, 2015

Summary from Goodreads:
Wilhelmina has a hundred identities.

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, infiltrate Skyvale Palace to study their foes. They assume the identities of nobles from a wraith-fallen kingdom, but enemies fill the palace, and Melanie’s behavior grows suspicious. With Osprey missions becoming increasingly dangerous and their leader more unstable, Wil can’t trust anyone.

She is a threat. Wraith is the toxic by-product of magic, and for a century using magic has been forbidden. Still the wraith pours across the continent, reshaping the land and animals into fresh horrors. Soon it will reach the Indigo Kingdom. Wilhelmina’s magic might be the key to stopping the wraith, but if the vigilante Black Knife discovers Wil’s magic, she will vanish like all the others

Jodi Meadows introduces a vivid new fantasy full of intrigue, romance, dangerous magic, and one girl’s battle to reclaim her place in the world.


The Orphan Queen has all the makings for one heck of a fantasy series. Wilhelmina's parents and kingdom were taken from her at a young age and since then she's been fighting to take her kingdom back. Her latest mission has her infiltrating the palace of the conquering kingdom to gather intel but Wilhelmina struggles to remain unattached. There is the Crown Prince Tobiah whom she has history with as a child, and his charismatic guard James who is impossible not to like. Then there is the vigilante Black Knife who has stolen her heart with his understanding and selflessness. Soon she finds herself fighting beside him against the Wraith that is bearing down on them all, while hiding the fact that she herself has magic. Meanwhile, there is tension brewing among her band of rebels as Wilhelmina and the unofficial leader, Patrick, start to disagree on which methods they will use to win back her kingdom. Wil must figure out how to do what's best for her people while staying true to herself and her heart.

I can see why so many readers are falling in love with this book. Wilhelmina is a strong and kind heroine. Black Knife is a swoony and mysterious love interest. There is a kingdom to win back and the lure of magic, evil and deception all around. This book was exciting to read. So what was my problem with it? While I liked everything about this book on the surface, it lacked to reach me on a deeper level. I enjoyed reading it and yet I am not all that impressed by it. I think in part that is because everything was way too easy. Wil could barely even get herself into a problem before Meadows wrote her out it. And there was a certain predictability to the story as well. That's mainly why this book fell short for me.

But again, there is a lot to like in this book and it is definitely the start of what should be a very exciting fantasy series. I will surely be reading the next book, I'm just not 100% convinced yet. But there is still time for that...

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