4 / 5 stars
Read in October 2020
Book #2 in the Fortuna Sworn series
You know that bittersweet feeling you get after finishing a book? The love for its story and characters and the pride that you finished it, combined with the sad reality that it’s over? I was in the final stretch of this book and thought Hey, won’t it be nice to end the day by finishing a book? In the case of Restless Slumber, no, no it was not nice.
The ending of this book is brutal and absolutely heartbreaking in multiple ways. It’s been clear since book one how much K.J. Sutton enjoys tormenting her characters, but the finale of this book takes it to a whole new level. I felt shocked, horrified, and sad that Fortuna had to make the choices she did. Honestly, I didn’t love this ending or that the plot took this direction, especially because it was such a graphic scene; however I’m interested to see the ramifications of this twist and how it will impact Fortuna throughout the remainder of the series. I’d highly recommend checking out the trigger warning at the end of this review or posted by other reviewers before picking up this book/series. It’s definitely an adult fantasy and it doesn’t hold any punches.
I love this series’ cast of characters, which only grew to include more memorable and intriguing members in this book. Fortuna is a fantastic narrator and I enjoyed seeing her grow in her relationships and her abilities. I have a soft spot for Damon and also really like Lyari and Finn. I’m still not 100% sure how I feel about Oliver (tbh his storyline doesn’t really interest me, plus I’m still not convinced he won’t turn out to be a villain), and overall I wasn’t a fan of the love square. For romance lovers there’s definitely a slow burn between Fortuna and Collith, but by the end it was a bit too slow for me. That doesn’t mean the sexual tension between them wasn’t amazing, though!
Regarding the plot, this book went in the exact opposite direction I thought it would. This wasn’t a bad thing at all, just surprising given the ending of book one. Instead of watching Fortuna navigate her new role as queen of the Unseelie Court, this book takes place above the surface as Fortuna tries to care for her brother while figuring out how to combine her new life with the one she left behind in Granby. At times the plot felt a bit all over the place and it seemed like Sutton wasn’t quite sure which characters and elements she wanted the reader to focus on. This made my attention wane a bit towards the end because my brain felt scrambled, but I ultimately ended up enjoying it and can’t wait to see how the world above the surface and the one below will interact in the future.
Lastly, Restless Slumber introduces a variety of spooky creatures that inhabit Fortuna’s universe, including werewolves, zombies, sirens, vampires, and witches to make it a fantastic October read. Fans of dark urban fantasy and faerie stories alike will enjoy this series, and I’m so excited it will include six books total. Book three comes out in December, and I can’t wait to follow the rest of Fortuna’s journey.
TW/CW: sexual assault/rape (on page), violence, mention of suicide, parent death (in flashbacks/memories)
Thank you to author K.J. Sutton for reaching out and providing an ecopy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.