I mentioned this book in both of my last two posts, so I thought I should finally write a review of it. I read it from the library as usual, and then asked for and got it for Christmas so that I could lend it out. That meant that I promptly loaned it and Sorcerer to the Crown out to the same sister who gave it to me.
The True Queen by Zen Cho. Ace/Penguin Random House, 2019. 9780425283417
Muna and Sakti know they are sisters but don’t remember anything else of their past when they are washed up on the beach in Janda Baik, in the Straits of Malacca, on the other side of the world from the events of Sorcerer to the Crown. They are taken in by Mak Genggang, the powerful witch we met in that book. We see things primarily from Muna’s point of view – she is the kind one, while her sister Sakti has magical powers that Mak Genggang decides need more training. Both sisters are sent to walk through Fairy to get to Prunella’s Lady Maria Wythe Academy of the Instruction of Females in Practical Thaumaturgy – only Sakti gets lost in Fairy on the way.
Once at the school, Muna meets Prunella’s best friend Henrietta, who’s teaching at the school while keeping it a secret from her family, as there’s still a lot of opposition to women learning magic. There are politics, quirky and mysterious characters, and doom to be avoided only if puzzles can be solved, along with a queer romance that is still appropriately reserved. I was able to figure out the solution to the problem pretty early, but it was still delightful. If you’re looking for some entertaining, low-commitment reading, this is just about perfect.
Both books in this duology are available from Libby, at least from my library.