The Lost Queen

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 21 Feb 2019

Member Reviews

Signe shines in this debut novel. I highly recommend it to readers who love good historical fiction with a strong female character. This has been optioned for film and I can already imagine the lush details and rich images. 

Thank you Signe for writing this amazing work and thank you NetGalley for a chance to read it early on.
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Sad to say DNF, not because of anything "bad" about the story or the writing, it just didn't really engage me very much. I can see how many people would really enjoy this narrative and I even have recommended it to people at the library who came back and said they loved it!
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Loved this one! Unique and captivating, it was a great read. I really loved Pike's writing style and found myself rooting hard for Languoreth.
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I could not get into this book. I tried several times to walk away and come back and even tried to push myself through but alas it was just not my cup of tea
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This was sold to me as Camelot meets Outlander and since I love both, I was instantly on board. Now that I’ve read this, however, I’m not sure why Outlander was used as comp title because I don’t see it in this plot. This is basically a Camelot prequel, in part the story of how Merlin became Merlin but centered on his twin sister Languoreth who became a queen.

And what a character Languoreth is! We first meet her when she’s 10 years old, just after the death of her mother. Child narrators don't always work for me but this one did, in part, because she doesn't act like a contemporary 10 year old. Olden days 10 year olds were much more mature and capable, which makes sense given how 15 year olds were considered men and women. Which by today's standards: yikes.

In any case, the novel is divided into parts, often skipping several years ahead and so we see Languoreth grow up, as well as how her family and country is changing along the way. There is no small amount of intrigue due to wars, political machinations, and the arrival of a more evangelical Christianity. Languoreth’s dad has to be careful about who he trusts, while also giving fealty to the High King, no matter what he thinks about his leadership. He wants to help preserve the Old Ways but the new Christians don’t fight fair, which was infuriating to see.

I came to care very deeply about the characters, to the point of worrying about them when I wasn’t reading the book. Languoreth’s brother Lailoken, our future Merlin, was a puzzle to me and I kept looking for clues of who he would become. He’s part warrior, part Druid, and has so many more options than Languoreth by virtue of his gender. They’re such close siblings and I really liked how the story explored their twinship.

Then there’s Maelgwn, a warrior in Emrys Pendragon’s army. He and Languoreth have an immediate connection but she’s already been promised to the son of the High King. This was agonizing to see. She had no real choice, not one that wouldn’t dishonor and discredit her family and put their people in danger. Once she was betrothed to Rhydderch, it was hard to root for her and Maelgwn. Rhydderch may not have been the man she’d choose but he does truly care for her, which is all the more impressive, given the people who live in the High King’s castle.

And yet, Maelgwn. I was basically in love with him, not only because of his character but because he kept trying to do right by everyone. After she gets married, she has children and the years pass but her feelings for Maelgwin do not waver. At the same time, she had some unreasonable expectations of him once their paths cross again. I was deeply irritated with Languoreth for being mad at Maelgwn, as if he was supposed to have pined over her for the past 16 years while she's married to someone else. It was so selfish of her, not to mention I worried her actions would jeopardize her family.

And then. That ending. Big things are afoot for the next book and I cannot wait for it to be released! This was an epic saga and I loved every bit of it.

CW: death of parent, grief, infidelity, murder, violence, religious desecration, sexism, references to domestic violence, rape, and child rape
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So good. The audio is AMAZING. I bought it even though I had this ARC. And I’ll buy the hardback. I struggle with reading series, but I will definitely be ready for book 2.
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I adore.historical fiction and this book wasn't the exception. I love Signe Pike. I'll write a full review soon .

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for giving me an ARC in exchange for an honest review*
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The synopsis of The Lost Queen pulled me in, but I didn't care for the story after all. It just didn’t pull me in like I was expecting it to. I really tried to like it but I just couldn't connect with the characters. Thanks to NetGalley for an arc in exchange for an honest review.
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Book is about the struggle in Ireland between the Druids and newly converted Christians.  Story goes through the struggles of how hard life was back then.  And traces family members over time.
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Stunning. I love historical fiction, and I love fantasy, and this is a great mix of both. Pike does an amazing job with her descriptions, and it's truly an immersive read. However, there are quite a few characters to keep track of, and though there is list of characters at the beginning, it is still a bit hard to keep track of who is who. But thankfully there is a pronunciation guide!

Thank you to NetGalley, Touchstone, and Signe Pike for sending me the ARC in return for an honest review.
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The Lost Queen tells the story of Languoreth, the sister of the man who inspired Merlin. While Scotland is rapidly becoming a Christian kingdom, Languoreth and her brother Lailoken are firm believers of the old religion. Her family also faces the threat of an Anglo-Saxon invasion. However, the hero Emry Pendragon and his army fights to defend Scotland from the potential invaders. Languoreth finds love with Maelgwn, Emrys’ right hand soldier. However, she is engaged to be married to Scotland’s prince Rhydderch, who is in line to be the next king. CanLanguoreth remain true to her ways and her heart?

   Before I read this novel, I had never heard of Languoreth or that she was the brother of the man who is the inspiration for Merlin. So, reading her story was truly a delight. Languoreth was a very compelling character. Most of the story takes place when she is a young girl. With the help of a Wisdom Keeper, she learns of the magic of the old faith. Languoreth also struggles between wishing to marry for love and marrying for duty. I also liked how Languoreth is determined to protect the faith of the old religion from becoming non-existent. Thus, she was a steadfast and resolute character.

   Overall, this novel is about duty, love, family, and religion. The Lost Queen had well-developed characters. The writing was very detailed and made medieval Scotland come alive. The novel was not without its flaws. The romance between Languoreth and Maelgwn was immediate upon first sight. Also, Maelgwn did not appear enough in this novel to make me believe that their romance could stand the test of time. Also, The Lost Queen ended abruptly, and I thought that there could have been a better way to end it. Still, as a fan of King Arthur legends, I loved how the myths were interwoven within the novel. I look forward to reading more about Languoreth’s epic journey. The Lost Queen is an enchanting novel for fans of Women of the Dunes, Avelynn, and Daughter of Destiny.
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I was so excited to read this book for a simple reason - Merlin.  I read it within 72 hours and to be honest with you the book did not amaze me. In fact it was just fine. Writing was fine. Plot should have been better. The question is if I want to continue this series. Perhaps some day, but not today.
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I liked the synopsis of The Lost Queen, but I didn't care for the story after all. I think I'm just not a fan of the time period. I tried but couldn't connect with the characters. Thanks to NetGalley for an arc in exchange for an honest review.
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Did not enjoy this book that much. Blocks of description are not really my thing but I know that a lot of other readers like that. Good plot and world building though
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This book is an old story told in an original manner with many new facets to keep it interesting.  The author did a very good job of melding her new story line into a believable piece of history.  While the days of Arthur are not me favorite piece of history, I still found the book an enjoyable read.
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Great book about a forgotten Briton queen, and an interesting hypothesis about the origins of King Arthur... Scottish!.. Who knew?!.. But the evidence laid out in the afterword is well-researched and compelling and the fictionalized account of the primary characters is well-written... Enjoyed it a great deal.  Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and provide an unbiased review
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Thank you Thank you Thank you for an ARC of this book!!! I love historical fiction and this book fascinated me.It grabbed me right off the bat and I devoured it. I absolutely can not wait until the second in the series comes out!!! I highly recommend this book.
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This is such a great book! Based off of some little-known history about the idea that Merlin may have been a true historical figure, with a twin sister, this book introduces us to them both. Told from his sister's perspective, it's a fascinating look at the times then and the making of them both - this figure that survives in myth and magic, and this powerful queen who has been lost to history. The storytelling is beautiful and evocative, and I'm very much looking forward to the second book. 

NOTE: I listened to the audio version of this, and the narrator is FABULOUS. Her voice is lush and lovely and honestly, if she could come over and read me bedtime stories every night I would be happy.
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Magic, history, and folklore all wrapped up in one amazing book. I did not want this book to end and am so thankful that this is a part of a trilogy so I can spend some more time with these amazing characters. This book reminded me of mists of Avalon in a completely different light.
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