Parents' Guide to

King's Cage: Red Queen, Book 3

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Author returns to form with nail-biting third installment.

King's Cage: Red Queen, Book 3 Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 14+

Based on 6 parent reviews

age 10+


King's Cage, the third installment of the critically acclaimed Red Queen series, does not disappoint! The plot and characters are never predictable, and we can see Mare's development throughout the story, physically and mentally. She began as a shattered girl, acting like a "kicked dog" around Samson, who had conducted a mental interrogation on her, and morphed into a powerful girl, not a little lightning girl. She proved herself through her courage, and did not show any weak points other than the ones necessary to make the novel good. The alternate points of views were very eye-opening as well, specifically Cameron Cole, who was the potentially deadliest newblood in the world. Seeing the way she though -so different from Mare!- truly proved Victoria Aveyard's writing expertise. The one warning: This installment shows more violence than the previous two books, and depicts mental and physical abuse. However, these scenes are fleeting and will not impact your child's life in any way. This book is perfect in every aspect!

This title has:

Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
age 12+

Okay, I guess

This book wasn't as good as the first two, but still okay.

This title has:

Great role models

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (6):
Kids say (46):

After Aveyard's disappointing second book, this installment is just what Red Queen fans need: genuine growth and character development, more romance, and more end game in sight for Mare Barrow. Even skeptics who put the series down after the lackluster Glass Sword should consider resuming it now that the author has once again found her groove, and her main character is no longer as excruciating to follow. Although the bulk of the book has Mare imprisoned in the Silver Palace, it's not just all about her. Aveyard manages to couple Mare's self-reflection with glimpses of villains who are far more complex than they originally seemed. Maven was twisted and molded by his now-dead mother, whose powers allowed her to take away and insert thoughts and feelings at her will. Evangeline is revealed to be far more ambitious (and far less interested in being any man's Queen) and even slightly in awe of Mare. And then there's Cal, who still struggles with Hamlet levels of indecision with the one exception of his overpowering feelings for Mare.

At more than 500 pages, it's unsurprising that the pacing is uneven: Some parts fly by, and others feel overlong. The introduction of Newblood Cameron as a narrator has potential, but so far it hasn't been seamless; her chapters are noticeably less compelling than the other points of view. She is, however, an interesting counterpoint to Mare, and she injects some diversity (beyond the blood colors) to the story. The women in this installment (Mare, Cameron, Farley, Evangeline, and even a brief cameo by Cal's grandmother, who's reminiscent of the clever but elderly matriarch Olenna Tyrell from Game of Thrones) outshine the men. Given that the book starts with a quote from Hillary Rodham Clinton, that's clearly on purpose, and discerning readers can see how girls will eventually rule in this world.

Book Details

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