Review: Blood of Wonderland by Colleen Oakes || YOU DON’T NEED HIM

Blood of Wonderland

Queen of Hearts Saga #1

Colleen Oakes

blood of wonderland by colleen oakes

The queen will rise.

Dinah has been exiled from Wonderland. The vicious father she always feared has framed her for the brutal murder of her brother and turned the kingdom against her. 

Now hiding in the lush and mysterious Twisted Wood with only her war steed at her side, Dinah is faced with a choice. She could leave Wonderland forever or return and fight her father for her throne—a fight she knows would only result in bloodshed.

When a chance encounter with one of her father’s long-lost enemies brings Dinah more allies than she ever could have imagined, war starts to feel inevitable. But before Dinah can lead her people into combat, she must confront certain truths about her heart and her destiny—no matter how dark those truths may be.

Revolution is rising in Wonderland.

Dinah’s battle has begun.

Publisher: Harperteen

Published: January 31st 2017



Possible Spoilers For: Queen of Hearts

Trigger Warning





Racism, Blood, Mention of Suicide, Death, Murder, Depictions of Grief, War Themes

“We become who we must to overcome pain and to make things right again.” 

Unlike the last book, this beginning/middle was good and the ending… wasn’t? No, I’m wording it wrong: the event that takes place in the end is… a very specific trope I’m kind of tired of.

Keeping it short: Dinah’s on the run from her father who framed her for murder. It’s in the Twisted Woods where she comes across the Yurkei and starts gathering an army to get her throne back.

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“Wars,” he reminded her, “are won in the mind, not on the field.” 

There’s a few twist and turns in here and I enjoyed this one a lot more than the first. Dinah isn’t a whiny princess anymore, but a wanted fugitive on the run from everything she’s ever known. She does go through a development that I had to nod my head in appreciation at. I also liked the father/daughter/protector thing happening with the Spade who finds her in the woods.

But, I’ll admit, this story is very much a filler book, full of backstories and flashbacks and exposition, but because it furthered the character development of Dinah, it didn’t bother me. It was also interesting seeing how these characters came to be.

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“I’m afraid I’ll die silently and quietly, like the flame blown from a match, and I’ll be nothing more than a child who played at war.” 

I mentioned twist happening and… I kind of guessed what it was? So while I was underwhelmed, I liked what this plot twist did to the story. However, my biggest issue was the ending.

Wardley is back, Dinah finally decides to reveal her feelings…. only to be shot down. This is the very specific trope I’m talking about. In Queen of Hearts retellings, love— always romantic, is the catalyst for said queen to turn evil… why can’t they just be ambitious?

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In book one, it’s hinted that she is born with this anger and ambition and it’s played on there, but then we add this unrequited love that turns her even further down the hole of no redemption and it was unnecessary.

This is still a short book, it’s not memorable, but I enjoyed it more than the first. Second book syndrome is kind of present, yet I wasn’t bothered by it. However, I won’t be reading book three despite those covers ❤ . I kind of have a feeling I know what’s going to happen and… it feels like a waste of time?

10 thoughts on “Review: Blood of Wonderland by Colleen Oakes || YOU DON’T NEED HIM”

  1. I agree this book seems like a filler. However, I still tried to read War of the Cards I enjoyed it most among the three. Sad to see you’ll not be reading the last.

    Liked by 1 person

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