This is the third book in the Paper Princess series. If you haven’t read the first and second books yet, I suggest you do that first and come back, otherwise you may be spoiled.
From mortal enemies to unexpected allies, two teenagers try to protect everything that matters most.
Ella Harper has met every challenge that life has thrown her way. She’s tough, resilient, and willing to do whatever it takes to defend the people she loves, but the challenge of a long-lost father and a boyfriend whose life is on the line might be too much for even Ella to overcome.
Reed Royal has a quick temper and even faster fists. But his tendency to meet every obstacle with violence has finally caught up with him. If he wants to save himself and the girl he loves, he’ll need to rise above his tortured past and tarnished reputation.
No one believes Ella can survive the Royals. Everyone is sure Reed will destroy them all.
They may be right.
With everything and everyone conspiring to keep them apart, Ella and Reed must find a way to beat the law, save their families, and unravel all the secrets in their Twisted Palace.
Twisted Palace was a solid conclusion to the Paper Princess Trilogy. It wasn’t mindblowingly amazing like the previous books were, but it was satisfying and concluded relatively well although it did leave quite a number of unanswered questions and loose ends.
This book picks up where the last book left off. For me, the cliffhanger in the previous book led to many assumptions and misconceptions in my head, but I was relieved when they were all cleared in the first hundred pages or so. The plot overall was mostly engaging, even though there were moments where I was second guessing everything.
As opposed to the other books, the premise of this book was pure angst of Ella and Reed trying to figure out how to deal with the case surrounding Brooke’s death, and also trying to get around Steve. While it made for an interesting read, I didn’t feel that in itself was strong enough to hold the entire plot together. This was definitely more of Reed’s story than Ella’s, and I really enjoyed how we get to see him become a more mature person who accepts his own responsibilities. I really enjoyed reading about him in this book more so than the previous books. Although his relationship with Ella is far from perfect, and he is also very flawed, I like how he accepts his shortcomings and becomes a more rounded character. Ella in my opinion was slightly more whiny, but given the situation she was put in, I can empathise and see why she was characterised that way. However, I don’t think Ella had as much attention than she did in the previous books in terms of character development, making her character more flat.
However, I really didn’t like Steve’s character. His character had this hype or expectation of a particular image, and from line one, I instantly disliked his him. It’s not because he’s supposed to be inherently bad, but rather it was the way he was portrayed which was done way over the top. For example, he’s completely oblivious to Ella’s intense dislike and distrust towards him, and also treats her like a five year old child instead of the seventeen-year-old that she is. He is also very susceptible to other opinions, and thus is very easily influenced by his emotions. Although these attributes add to his very flawed personality, I don’t see any redeeming qualities that make his character particularly interesting.
As a result, the part ear the end where Ella and Dinah become allies felt completely random. It didn’t have any basis to it, and it was completely irrelevant to the previous events. Speaking of the ending, while i wasn’t entirely surprised by the events, I didn’t think there was enough time to process everything. The plot and pacing was a bit rushed, making it difficult to keep track of everything. There were also quite a number of things I thought were left unresolved, resulting in a number of loose ends that weren’t quite tied up properly.
I really would’ve liked to see more Valerie in this book, as she was sidelined. The main focus of her character was her relationship with Wade, which was quite disappointing as she was such a vibrant, fun character in the previous books. I actually would’ve liked to see more Jordan as well, especially at the end since her relationship with Ella was also unclear at the end.
Overall while I enjoyed reading this book and thought it was a solid ending to the series, there were some aspects especially in characterisation that I didn’t really like. I think this book is worth reading if you’re emotionally invested into the rest of the series and really want to know what happens to the characters at the end of the story.
Update 12/12/16: Fixed a couple of typos that were pointed out to me by @numberedsite – thanks!