Lost Princess Politics, or my review of Take the Key and Lock Her up

Take the Key and Lock her Up

Take the Key and Lock Her Up (Embassy Row #3)

By: Ally Carter

Publisher:  Scholastic

Publication Date: December 27th, 2016

Format: Hardcover

The princess is dead. Long live the princess.

Centuries ago, the royal family of Adria was killed…or so everyone thought.

Now Grace Blakely knows the truth: There was one survivor, and that survivor’s blood runs through her veins. This simple fact could cause a revolution—which is why some people will stop at nothing to keep it from coming to light.

There is only one way for Grace to save herself, save her family, and save the boy she loves. She must outmaneuver her foes, cut through the web of lies that has surrounded her for years, and go back to the source of all her troubles, despite the risk.

If she wins, she will inherit a throne.

And if she loses, she will inherit the fate of all the dead princesses who came before her.


4 star (griffin)

Before this summer, I had read the first book of every single one of Ally Carter’s series, but never any other one. When I decided to actually finish an Ally Carter series, I settled on the Embassy Row one–it was high-intensity, with an interesting portrayal of mental illness and all of the daggers-edge diplomacy of the best spy flicks. And, having now finished the series, it was just as bombastic an ending as I would have anticipated.

Without spoiling too much, I will say that the series veered onto a very different track than I would have predicted when starting All Fall Down. I thought this would continue to be a political thriller type series, and not go down the path of lost princesses. But I will also say that I liked how even when discussing lost princesses, it was dealt with in a more political kind of way–it made me feel as if the plot still had a thread of that original thought in there. But on the whole, I was kind of ‘meh’ about the princess thing, at least as it played out in this book.

But as always, I LOVED Grace’s merry band of embassy row kids and their insane badassery–Rosie wins my heart, as always, and I’m going to be very disappointed if Meghan doesn’t at some point reveal herself to be a Gallagher Girl. And, c’mon, we can’t get much better than the indomitably Russian Alexei as love interest, even if he and Grace need to work on being more honest and better to each other at points.

And, despite my lack of fondness for the princess plot, I won’t try to say that I didn’t get swept up in the action. There were points where I thought I was being asked to make too many leaps, or where things felt more disjointed. But when the action was rolling, I was absolutely hooked. Between secret societies, royal drama, and the ever-present embassy row politics, there were absolutely times when I couldn’t get enough.

And though I did feel as if the ending was a teensy bit cheesy and dramatic, it honestly ended exactly how I wanted it to–and I loved the quiet hints that, even though their summer of international plotting and chaos was over, that the Embassy Row kids would continue making their own special brand of mischief in the future.

And, for those of you wanting more Ally Carter, she recently announced her new book–so you only have to wait a short while for more crazy teenage action stories.

rosi name

Disclaimer: The synopsis and cover picture were pulled from the book’s Goodreads page. Neither belong to us.

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