The Winner’s Kiss (The Winner’s Trilogy, #3) by Marie Rutkoski | Book Review


“It was him or you,” he said softly. “You had to choose.”
Her gaze fell to the wet grass beneath her, the wrapped bandage. She thought of her past. Her whole life. “I want better choices.”
“Then we must make a world that has them.”

Title: The Winner’s Kiss
Series: The Winner’s Trilogy, #3
Author: Marie Rutkoski
Published: March 29, 2016
Edition: ebook
Pages: 496
My Rating: 4 / 5
Goodreads page

WARNING: There are spoilers from the previous two books in this review.



War has begun. Arin is in the thick of it, with the East as his ally and the empire as his enemy. He’s finally managed to dismiss the memory of Kestrel, even if he can’t quite forget her. Kestrel turned into someone he could no longer recognize: someone who cared more for the empire than for the lives of innocent people-and certainly more than she cared for him. At least, that’s what he thinks.

But far north lies a work camp where Kestrel is a prisoner. Can she manage to escape before she loses herself? As the war intensifies, both Kestrel and Arin discover unexpected roles in battle, terrible secrets, and a fragile hope. The world is changing. The East is pitted against the West, and Kestrel and Arin are caught between. In a game like this, can anybody really win?

(This synopsis is from Goodreads.)



Arin has finally redeemed himself in my eyes. Thanks goodness for that because I was very close to slapping some sense in that boy.

A lot of things happened in this book, some of which I’m not sure if I liked or not.

Kestrel was taken to a work camp (which is basically where they work prisoners to death) at the end of the second book, The Winner’s Crime. The story in this book takes right off from there.

There is still conflict between Kestrel and Arin (mainly because Arin still believes that Kestrel is a monster), but it’s a bit less.

Kestrel’s time in the work camp wasn’t all that exciting except for a couple of tiny events. Other than that, most of the days were described as a blur to her. I wish the work camp itself was described a bit more, but I guess Kestrel couldn’t explain the camp if she was drugged all the time.

The difference between Kestrel before and after the work camp is uncanny. It’s as if she two different people, and in a way, she is.

The ending was decent, but sort of boring. With all the suspense building througout the story, it was a bit disappointing. I was expecting so much more than what was given.




I have no idea what to think about Kestrel. I don’t hate her, but I don’t like her either. I felt indifferent to her situation (no offense to her).


Thank goodness he finally found some sense.


She’s pretty freaking cool. She’s like a sister but also a best friend kind of person.


He’s trying, I guess. That’s all I’m going to say about him.

Prince Verex

Although he doesn’t make much of an appearance, he’s still pretty important (to me). He cares for Kestrel, but as friend more than romantically.

General Trajan

He’s reminds me of Tywin Lannister from Game of Thrones. He’s your typical bad father that always appear in YA fantasy books.



I give this book 4 / 5 BBC Sherlock heads. It was pretty good, and I was (sort of) satisfied on how it ended.



Until next time….


2 thoughts on “The Winner’s Kiss (The Winner’s Trilogy, #3) by Marie Rutkoski | Book Review

  1. kimmiegg 08/11/2016 / 2:37 pm

    I want to read this series so I just sorta read your synopsis without having any sort of knowledge about the last two books…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jessica 08/11/2016 / 4:13 pm

      I think it’s a pretty good series and you should give it a try!


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