The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon is a standalone adult fantasy novel.
A world divided by politics and beliefs. An old foe threatens to rise again. And chaos on the horizon. Three women from opposite sides of this battle must overcome their difference and unite, or all is lost.
Annnnd that is the only synopsis I can write without going into the many, many details included in this tome. This is a large book. A very large book. So large that I checked out the paper copy and “noped” real hard. So I was very happy to find out that there was an audio book version because I have really enjoyed Shannon’s The Bone Season series. And ultimately, I did enjoy this beast of a book.
I tend to enjoy books with a lot going on; I like a lot of description and background in my books. I like to take a deep dive into the world and see all the world building the author has put into the story. Shannon definitely does this in Priory. She builds up the politics, the backstories, the little details that others might leave out. But even for me, there was a lot to take in, in one single book.
I remember getting a little more than halfway done and thinking to myself, “this would be a perfect stopping point.” I respect Shannon for staying true to her story and keeping this as one book, BUT I do think the story would have done really well as a duology. Although, I am glad I don’t have to wait a year to finish!
For me, Ead has the most interesting storyline for me. I liked how she was fighting against her duty, her heart and what she actually believed to be right or wrong. Ead, like all the women in this book, be they side characters or main character, are strong, capable women. This is probably going to be a major appeal for a lot of people. Also there are dragons. So yea, dragons.
I enjoyed this book but I wasn’t wowed by it. Some things felt familiar to me. This one gets a solid 3 stars from me.
That’s all for now!