A Winner’s Crime by Marie Rutkoski

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Medium: Book

Overview (No Spoilers):

My motivation for writing up a review on A Winner’s Crime is currently suffering from a late night at a Tim McGraw concert yesterday, which was amazing despite a rain delay, and an underwhelming response to this second book in The Winner’s Trilogy, which picks up shortly after the events of the preceding novel, The Winner’s Curse.

Upon receiving The Winner’s Crime I was incredibly eager to pick up this book after thoroughly enjoying its predecessor. However, the bulk of the story involved Kestrel manipulating and deceiving everyone around her in a precarious balancing act that grows ever tedious. While the reader delightfully learn more about the fascinating world created by Rutkoski, e.g., Capitol life and the Eastern country, Arin continues his bullish, stubborn risk taking, which seems out of character for his intellect and perception. Overall, this second novel was still entertaining despite personality overkill. We saw relationships develop and grow between several key characters and gain a better understanding of the politics of the realm.

Additional Insight (Spoilers):

  1. The risks that Kestrel were taking by dressing up as a maid seemed far too great. And why was she reluctant to tell Arin about her involvement? For that matter, why did Tensen keep the letter if he wasn’t going to tell Arin? It was absolutely heart breaking after all the effort Rutkoski had put into healing and developing Kestrel and her Father’s relationship.
  2. Why didn’t Kestrel plot an assassination for the Emperor? She could have taken over or had his son take over. Either of which would have been a better situation?
  3. FYI. My additional insight section will be rather short due to already skipping ahead and having read the third book in the series. Cheating I know. With the cliffhanger that this book ended in how could I not! So good!


  1. This definitely seems like the type of series I could get into. I also find the second in a series somewhat lackluster depending on what it is I’m reading about! Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

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