via Amazon (available for $14.99 in eBook, $25.20 hardback)

Enter the dark and sensual realms of the Black Jewels in this sweeping story in the New York Times bestselling fantasy saga of three young women who must navigate life within the powerful SaDiablo family—and come to terms with Witch, the Queen who is still the heart and will of that family.

The Queen’s price is to stand against what you know is wrong. To stand and fight, no matter the cost to your court or to yourself. Especially to yourself.

Zoey, a young Queen-in-training at SaDiablo Hall, is wounded…and vulnerable to taunts and criticism. When an opportunity arises to befriend a stranger seeking sanctuary at the Hall, she puts herself and others in danger by ignoring Daemonar Yaslana’s warning to back off.  

Meanwhile, the witch Jillian’s family prepares for her Virgin Night, the rite of passage that assures a woman will retain her power and her Jewels. The trouble is Jillian secretly went through the ceremony already. Now she has to explain the omission of that detail to her powerful and lethal family.   And the High Lord of Hell’s daughter, Saetien, travels to Scelt to find out about Jaenelle Angelline’s sister—and perhaps to discover truths about herself.  

With some guidance from Witch, these three young women will learn when to yield because it is right—and when to take a stand, even if they must pay the Queen’s price.

Mother Night…

And may the Darkness be merciful, a new novel in Anne Bishop’s Black Jewels series dropped on 3/7/23. The Queen’s Price is number 12 overall and takes place centuries after The High Lord’s Daughter in Twilight’s Dawn. I’m not sure if it’s officially called this, but The Queen’s Price is the third book in the Queen series. There are four storylines being followed.

Saetian and the Search for Her Truth

 As far as teenage characters go, Saetian has been a complete asshole. I know most people are assholes at that point in her life, but damn. At least in this story, she calms down a bit. In order for her to learn more about herself, a broken black widow points her in the direction of Wilhemina Benedict, Jaenelle Angelline’s half-sister. This leads her to Scelt, where she encounters Butler, a demon-dead Warlord who has stories to tell her, though he is reluctant to do so.

Daemon Sadi’s School of Witchcraft and Foolery

 Welp, Daemon has already stepped into his father’s role of High Lord, and might as well pick up the mantle of Honorary Uncle to a bunch of teenagers who will come into power. At the end of The Queen’s Weapons, Daemon agrees to take in some youngsters set to become the next rulers of Kaeleer. This, of course, is not without its drama.

Most of the tale focuses on young Queens and Witches who have zero common sense and start a whole lot of problems.

The New Cat in Town

A powerful witch, Grizande from Tigre, shows up on the Hall’s doorstep, seeking sanctuary. Naturally, Daemon and crew take her in and protect her. She instantly has a connection with Daemonar Yaslana, which may the Darkness have mercy on poor Lucivar as he keeps collecting children like Pokemon.

Jillian and the Quest for Booty

 Jillian….well….what it says. She’s in love with a young man and wants to be intimate with him. Of course, this means she has to have her Virgin Night to protect her power, which means she has to have the men in her family involved. They have to have a say, of course. Problem is, she already had her Virgin Night…and didn’t tell them. Oy.

Initial Thoughts

Honestly, between The Queen’s Bargain and The Queen’s Weapons, I was sort of falling out of love with the series. I struggled with finding any sort of connection to Saetian since she just annoyed the hell out of me. Plus, I felt like Surreal had to be butchered in order for all this to go down, which I’m not for.

Luckily, The Queen’s Price brought things more into perspective. I feel like I understand some of the characters better. However, the cast is getting way overloaded. There are a lot of new folks I just don’t care about. Especially all the youngsters in Daemon’s School of Witchcraft and Foolery. None of them seem to have real personalities. Even Zoey, who isn’t bad, per se, but she’s just kind of blah. The only new kid I find interesting is Grizande.

What really brings the whole thing down is a lack of a concrete villain. In every book, it’s some petty girl causing stupid shit. I need someone powerful and scary and makes me want to throw my book when they pop up in the story. There’s nothing driving me to root for the good guys except my love for some of them.

I must say, I’m intrigued by how the different bloodlines of Jaenelle’s former coven are coming together. I can’t wait to see what it means for Kaeleer’s future.

Our feelings towards the story

I love the BJS so much, I dragged my husband into it. He has also read all the books now and we enjoy talking about the story together. Damn right, baby. That’s how love should work, lol. So this is not a “Royal We” situation! Here are our feelings about this newest addition to the series.

Things we loved: Brenda. She’s a fiery lass from Scelt who brings a lot of fun and humor into the story. I love the friendship blossoming between her and Jillian. I can’t wait to see what happens going forward.

Things we liked: We’re happy that some of the gaps in the story were filled in. It was interesting reading what happened between Jaenelle Angelline and her sister after the fact, something that had been on my mind for YEARS.

Things we didn’t like: Some of the storylines didn’t go anywhere and just felt like they were setting up stuff for other books instead of being self-contained. Which, really, is generally fine, but there were too many this time around. Also, Jillian’s whole thing could have been a part of a collection of stories similar to Dreams Made Flesh and Twilight’s Dawn. It just didn’t fit.

Things we hated: We feel like Wilhelmina’s character was butchered! The end of The Queen of the Darkness gave us no indication bad blood happened. She’d finally gotten a spine and sought out Jaenelle, and then…dumbassery occurs. I found it so frustrating.

Petty: I absolutely hated the use of the word “exercised” for worked up. And it’s said…A LOT.

Want to know more about: Saetan’s Cabinet of Curiosities left for his sons. Come on…tell us.

Ultimate Beale review: The Queen’s Price was an enjoyable read, and much better than the last two books, but it just felt like a filler/flashback episode of a tv show. It will wash the taint of the previous two out of your mouth, but it’s not as good as other books in the series. Despite not being quite as good, We’re definitely looking forward to more.

Smut Rating:

Innocent (relatively)

Pleasure Rating:

Have you read the book? Let me know in the comments. Until next time, my friend. Keep your Mind in the Gutter.