Mare and the others arrive on Tuck, a small island where the Colonel (Farley’s father) is leading the Guard. He imprisons Cal, and then the whole group escapes to go and find newbloods that are hiding across the country. Maven is also hunting these newbloods in an attempt to draw Mare out. Despite this, they rescue a tonne of them and start training a really small army. Mare comes across a seer called Jon, who tells them that Julian is in Carros prison. He also says he’ll see Mare again one day. The group rescues Julian and a tonne of newbloods from the prison. Shade, Mare’s brother, dies protecting her. Mare kills Elara. They return to Tuck, and broadcast a message that shows Elara is dead, and call for an uprising. Mare and the Colonel lead two groups to go and rescue child soliders from the Choke. Mare’s plane is struck down and she is captured by Maven.
what went down
- Mare and the Scarlet Guard are travelling via train to the Guard’s base at Naercey. Maven knows about the base, so it’s probably not a good idea.
- When they get to Naercey, they see that it’s been evacuated. The group gets shot at, as the Silver soldiers have already arrived. There’s a bit of a battle and Shade gets shot, but Mare manages to escape on a submarine.
- Mare arrives on Tuck, which is an island that a bunch of Lakelander soldiers are using as a base. Mare’s family is also there. A Lakeland commander, the Colonel, is now in charge of the Guard on Tuck. The Colonel is Farley’s father, and seems to be a bit of a dick. He strips Farley of her command.
- Cal is put in chains and interrogated because he’s Silver royalty and his brother is also a dick.
- Mare and Kilorn go to see Cal, using the key that Farley gave them. Kilorn shoves Mare into the cell with Cal. The cell is made from Silent Stone, like the cells in the first book.
- Maven has apparently offered to change the age of conscription back to eighteen in exchange for his brother. No one should ever listen to him.
- The Colonel and Kilorn enter the cell. Kilorn tranquilises the Colonel, and along with Shade, helps Mare, Cal, and Farley escape.
- Kilorn takes the list of newbloods from the Colonel’s office.
- The group escapes the island by plane. They plan to find the newbloods on the list before Maven does.
- Farley and Shade find a newblood called Nix, who seems pretty solid. He joins the crew after first attacking Mare. He’s not a fan of Silvers since they killed his family. He taunts Cal.
- Cal apologises to Farley for having her tortured.
- The group comes across a small group of the Scarlet Guard in the woods outside a city. The Guard leads them into tunnels, pretending to take them into the city. Mare realises that Crance, one of the Guard, is leading them into a trap. Mare collapses the tunnel.
- There are meant to be three newbloods in this city and they set off to find them. They find a records room and get addresses for the newbloods. The group keeps moving and they walk into a square where the body of one of these newbloods is hanging. Cal realises this is a trap and a fight breaks out.
- Mare hears a mysterious ticking sound. Ten points to your house if you get that reference.
- Maven enters the square, and while they do manage to escape, everything goes a little bit to shit. Mare is knocked unconscious for several days.
- More and more newbloods are rescued and added to the group. Cal trains them to use weapons and to fight. He also helps them use their powers.
- Kilorn and Mare talk about their feelings and their friendship. Kilorn says she’s allowed to love Cal. ALLOWED TO LOVE CAL.
- Maven is still going on a killing spree in an attempt to draw Mare and the others out. He leaves notes for Mare after killing a newblood’s family, including a baby. Dark. He tells her that he’ll stop if she turns herself in. Mare refuses to do so, because why would she do that?!
- It turns out that Maven is planning on sending thousands of child soldiers north to the front lines. Obviously these children are going to die. Mare feels responsible.
- A somewhat creepy guy (because all seers are creepy, in my opinion) called Jon tells Mare that Sara, Julian, and several newbloods are imprisoned in Carros. Queen Elara is planning on using them as weapons in the war. He tells Mare to leave immediately, and he’ll see her again.
- When the group lands back at their base, they meet Cameron, a newblood who starts shooting at them. Cameron plans on going to the front as her brother is one of the children who’s been sent there.
- Cameron escaped from Carros Prison previously, so they need her to get back in.
- Mare and the others go to the prison to save Julian, the newbloods, and also the Silvers that are imprisoned there. Nanny, a newblood, transforms into Maven. Cameron disables the Silvers’ powers. Nanven (Nanny disguised as Maven) is asked if she wants to see Elara, who is apparently at the prison. Nanven declines and the prison guards become suspicious. There’s a fight, and then Nanny transforms into the captain.
- They run through the prison, freeing as many newbloods as they can. Mare kills a tonne of guards and Cal gets mad at her.
- They reach the area of the prison that Julian is being kept in. Suddenly there’s a load of mist and the group is separated.
- Elara speaks into Mare’s mind. Mare goes into a cell made of Silent Stone so Elara can’t reach her. Except then Elara makes an actual appearance and tries to shoot Mare. Shade grabs Mare and takes her to the others, who have found Julian.
- The group escapes the prison. Ptolemus kills Ara, and tries to kill Mare. Shade teleports in front of her and saves her. He dies, though, which is hella sad. Elara is also killed, which is not so sad.
- Mare tells the group to head back to Tuck. Farley accuses Mare of knowing what would happen to Shade at the prison and going anyway.
- Cal doesn’t like what Mare did in the prison, which seems a bit stupid to me because they’re literally at war. Get a grip, son.
- Mare plans on making a deal with the Colonel. She plans to start a civil war, by using a news broadcast to display Elara’s body. The Colonel becomes Mare’s ally, and they do a Hunger Games type thing on the TV that is a shoutout for Reds, newbloods, and Silvers to join them against Maven.
- Cal goes back for the other newbloods that they left at the hideout.
- Mare meets Rash and Tahir, who are newbloods from Montfort. They tell Mare that Montfort has an army and is ready to fight. They offer the rescued newbloods sanctuary. They want Mare to go with them, but she refuses.
- Mare goes to see her family and explains what happened to Shade at the prison. They don’t want her to rescue the child soldiers from the Choke. Her brothers go with her.
- Shade is buried on Tuck. Farley tells Mare that she’s not going to the Choke. She’s pregnant.
- Mare joins the volunteers who are to rescue the child soldiers. The Colonel takes another group. They fly over the country and see cities burning and rioting.
- However, they don’t make it to the front lines because their plane is attacked and Mare is taken in by Maven after she offers herself up in exchange for the others’ freedom. Mare kneels before Maven and I’m honestly disgusted. Ugh.
- Mare is taken into the palace, and is taken to Maven. He puts a collar on her. Ugh.
how did it end?
The group escapes the prison with Julian in tow. Queen Elara is killed by Mare. Shade is killed while protecting Mare. It’s all very sad. The group returns to Tuck and Mare strikes a deal with the Colonel. They agree to rescue the children from the front lines. They go off in two groups, with Mare leading one of them. Mare’s plane is struck down, and she’s captured and taken to Maven. The book ends with him putting a collar on her.