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Stolen Empire #2

Queen of Tomorrow

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Sophie—now Catherine, Grand Duchess of Russia—had a tough first year at Imperial Court. Married at sixteen to Grand Duke Peter, heir to the throne, and settled in their own palace, things are finally looking up. As a new day dawns, she thinks only of securing her future, and the future of their country, during one of the greatest political upheavals of her time. Fighting desperately against forces trying to depose the Empress Elizabeth and put the young Prince Ivan on her throne, Sophie soon finds herself in the middle of a war brewing between her beloved Prussia, and her new empire. But even as she navigates the fragile political landscape, she quickly realizes that she has only begun to discover the tangled web of deceit and infidelity woven over the lavish court of Oranienbaum Palace.

When a strange and delicate alliance forms between the young couple, she glimpses a future of happiness, only to see it lost in a moment at the hands of those who still seek to end her life—and prevent her reign. Out of favor with the empress and running out of options, Sophie will have to sacrifice her own innocence on the altar of Russia if she is to save the nation, and herself. To survive, she will have to do the unthinkable, betray those closest to her and become something greater and more dangerous than she ever imagined she could be… a queen.

280 pages, Paperback

First published July 1, 2015

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About the author

Sherry D. Ficklin

44 books664 followers
Sherry is the author of over a dozen novels for teens and young adults including the best selling Stolen Empire series. She can often be found browsing her local bookstore with a large white hot chocolate in one hand and a towering stack of books in the other. That is, unless she's on deadline at which time she, like the Loch Ness monster, is only seen in blurry photographs.
Sherry also writes contemporary romance under the pen name SJ Noble. You can find her at her official website, www.sherryficklin.com, or stalk her on her Facebook page www.facebook.com/sherry.ficklin.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 157 reviews
Profile Image for Aditi.
920 reviews1,320 followers
July 22, 2015
“Power changes everything till it is difficult to say who are the heroes and who the villains.”

----Libba Bray, an American author


Sherry D. Ficklin, an American author, pens her next book in the Stolen Empire series that accounts the journey of Sophie- a young Duchess of Imperial Russian Kingdom, called Queen of Tomorrow, where Sophie portrays the young Catherine the Great. Being a Duchess is not an easy thing when the smell of death and threat of murder lurks at every corner of Sophie's life.


Synopsis:

Sophie—now Catherine, Grand Duchess of Russia—had a tough first year at Imperial Court. Married at sixteen to Grand Duke Peter, heir to the throne, and settled in their own palace, things are finally looking up. As a new day dawns, she thinks only of securing her future, and the future of their country, during one of the greatest political upheavals of her time. Fighting desperately against forces trying to depose the Empress Elizabeth and put the young Prince Ivan on her throne, Sophie soon finds herself in the middle of a war brewing between her beloved Prussia, and her new empire. But even as she navigates the fragile political landscape, she quickly realizes that she has only begun to discover the tangled web of deceit and infidelity woven over the lavish court of Oranienbaum Palace.

When a strange and delicate alliance forms between the young couple, she glimpses a future of happiness, only to see it lost in a moment at the hands of those who still seek to end her life—and prevent her reign. Out of favor with the empress and running out of options, Sophie will have to sacrifice her own innocence on the altar of Russia if she is to save the nation, and herself. To survive, she will have to do the unthinkable, betray those closest to her and become something greater and more dangerous than she ever imagined she could be… a queen.



This book opens right where the first book ended with a cliffhanger, thus putting the readers' mind at ease. Oranienbaum Palace is now Sophie's home where she represents herself as the Duchess of Russia. Leaving behind her world in Prussia was not an easy decision but it surely turned Sophie into an one hell of a kick-ass princess who is brave enough not only to withstand her husband, Peter's infidelity and his taunts, but also singlehandedly manages the politics and the deception going on around the palace to throwout the Grand Empress, thus putting her young son to the throne. Will Catherine be able to handle everything as she is supposed to like a queen?


Well, well, can this book be anymore perfect!! Perfect heroine, imperfect surroundings, perfect ploy against the queen, perfect setting and perfectly challenging twists- these all sum up and can make any reader to give a 5 star rating to this book. And once again, the book cover manages to allure the minds of it's readers thus compelling them to read the book from cover-to-cover.

The writing is once again pretty perfect and this time things have matured and violence and back-biting and agenda to kill the queen is everywhere with some adrenaline rushing action scenes that have been described with keen detail. The pacing is really fast and there is enough drama that will keep the readers engaged till the very end. The narrative is engaging and free-flowing.

This time there is an air of grandeur hanging by the palace walls. From beautiful gowns to enchanting feats to fairytale style balls will steal away a reader's heart and mind with the vivid descriptions. Once again, the author have strikingly and elegantly painted the Oranienbaum Palace in Russia. The timeline will give the readers a feeling like they are indeed on a time-warp.

The characters from the first book and some new characters introduced in this book are all very strongly developed. Especially, Sophie's characterization is done brilliantly as Sophie becomes a mature and a calculative as well as a calm and brave princess and any reader will easily feel intimidated by her powerful demeanor. Prince Peter is as hopeless as he was in the first book. The female characters are all very fiery and are shining with real powers.

The love triangle in the first book still continues in this book too, although Peter's best friend, Sergei is depicted with lots of depth and his indifference towards Sophie feels less surreal. The chemistry and the passionate love scenes are described with lots of emotions and at times can make the readers feel like it's bit graphic.

Overall, Queen of Tomorrow is little bit more intense and darker than the first book and once again this book signs off with a cliffhanger. I'm eagerly waiting to read the last book in this series.

Verdict: Completely must read YA series that has history, passion, fantasy and danger!

Courtesy: Thanks to YA Bound Book Blog Tour for the review copy.
Profile Image for Sherry Ficklin.
Author 44 books664 followers
December 16, 2014
This is my book, I hope you all enjoy it and I appreciate you taking the time to read and review it (even if it wasn't your cup of tea!)
XOXP
Sherry
Profile Image for Joood Hooligan.
518 reviews32 followers
July 4, 2015
http://www.platypire.com/j-hooligan/q...

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

I've been waiting for this since I finished the first one. I needed to get back into the story and see how Sherry Ficklin was going to portray Catherine next.

Time has passed a few months since the end of Queen of Someday, but Catherine has definitely grown as a person. It's clear she's becoming a powerful force with the way she handles situations.

I had to fight myself to interact with my family I hadn't seen in a while, because I didn't want to put this down. I had to literally hide my kindle and phone from myself. Even then, I felt like an addict who needed her fix that entire night. I can't remember the last time I felt that way while reading something.

Much like the first, I was totally engrossed in this book. The author has a way of writing that grabs her readers and doesn't let go until the book is over. Then they're left waiting for their next fix and with one hell of a book hangover. The more I read from her, the more impressed I am.

I am eagerly awaiting Queen of Always.
Profile Image for Kathy.
2,741 reviews5,977 followers
June 10, 2015
Enjoyed. Can't wait for the next book!!

Some sexual content nothing graphic but talk of mistresses, plotting to create an heir. Violence/abuse but again not overly graphic
Profile Image for Rachel  (APCB Reviews).
331 reviews1,190 followers
November 5, 2015
Initial Thoughts:I loved this one so much! Catherine navigates through Russian court attempting to keep her safety and power. The stakes get higher and higher and twists and turns attack from all sides. Book #2 in the Queen of Someday series does not disappoint!

Read the full review @ A Perfection Called Books

Historical fiction is quickly becoming a favorite genre of mine. I love the attention to detail, the decorum, and the speech. The sequel to "Queen of Someday," a historical fiction novel on the early life of Catherine the Great captivated me once more with a dazzling story of love and politics.

In book two of The Stolen Empire series, Catherine adjusts to her new life as a duchess, heir to the Russian throne. She's managed to find some semblance of happiness in her dreary, tragedy-riddled life. She's at peace with her husband until something horrible spins everything out of control. Something that forces Catherine to take drastic measures that will change her forever.

I love Ficklin's writing style. It's as elegant and graceful as the setting and time period. Her writing is both succinct and descriptive all at once. Theres no pacing problems, the light and dark scenes well-matched.The dialogue was authentic to the time period as well (that's one of my bookish peeves). So many unexpected things happened in this novel, we're left reeling after each and every revelation.

I truly admire how wonderful the characterization of this series is. It's fascinating seeing Catherine grow from the doe-eyed innocent to the strategic, shrewd woman we know her as now. In this book we see her deal with problem after problem and watch her change a bit each and every time. We meet a few new characters and lots of interesting things arise. Peter is such a complex character, and we learn more and more about him as the story progresses.

The court politics is easily one of my favorite parts of the novel. The gossip and the decorum and the parties, I love it all! If you enjoyed the first book, you'll enjoy this stunning sequel that raises the stakes even higher.
Profile Image for Ari Reavis.
Author 16 books147 followers
July 16, 2015
*ARC received from Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review *

What a book!!! I was hoping this one lived up to the 1st book and I was not disappointed. The Grand Duchess Catherine is my freaking girlllll. She went through so much in this book, but instead of letting it all crush her, she used it to fuel her revenge. She became such a strong and wise young lady. I would like to give her a round of applause for her scheming, manipulating, and just down right bad ass-ness throughout this story. (CLAPPINGGG) And the romance.... heart be still. She literally had to fight to have anything for herself, including love, and although, at times, she lost sight of the light at the end of the tunnel, she always pulled herself together and found a way to turn things to her advantage. There were so many twists and turns in this book, you just couldn't see certain things coming at all and I loved it. Awesome, awesome book.
218 reviews27 followers
August 10, 2016
​I received a review copy from Clean Teen Publishing in exchange with an honest review.

I didn't know that I will end up loving this book. I wasn't a big fan of the 1st book, but this.... It is incredible!

I repeat what I said about character development in the 1st book, but Sherry takes it to a brand new level.

The plot thickens in Queen of Tomorrow ! Sophie grows a thicker skin, and faces the consequences of doing so.

Peter, well.... I went from hating him , to feeling sorry for him, and the circle keeps on spinning.

If you have read the 1 st book , and weren't sure if you want to continue the series, I highly recommend you to do so.

I really enjoyed this, and I give it 4/5 stars.
Profile Image for Hannah ◇ReaderintheRough◇.
197 reviews69 followers
May 9, 2016
4.5 stars.



When he leaves my office, I return to my window, twisting my wedding ring around my finger. As it moves across my skin, I swear it tightens like a noose around my neck.

Sophie's husband Peter grows madder and more violent, the Empress becomes more devious (and malicious), Sergei remains ever-loyal and passionate, and Sophie begins to act and think like a queen.

Loved it.
Profile Image for Maja  - BibliophiliaDK ✨.
1,055 reviews596 followers
July 23, 2019
WAIT... DID I JUST READ THE SAME BOOK TWICE?

Having just finished the first book in this series Queen of Someday I literally felt like this one mirrored the plot of the first one too closely. Love affairs and murder plots, that all this series is shaping up to be... Gets tedious, already.

THE THINGS I DISLIKED

Repeat: When you have to re-use every plot line from the first book, you probably shouldn't be writing the second book...

What plot?: Actually, calling it a plot might even be too far of a stretch. It seemed that all happened in this book was Cathering bedding Sergei...

Sergei and Catherine: And speaking of Catherine and Sergei, if I had reservations about her relationship with Alexander in the first book, I had even more with the relationship between Catherine and Sergei. I mean, at least Alexander and Catherine shared a love of poetry. I couldn't find anything that Catherine and Sergei shared, except for lust...

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Profile Image for Cocktails and Books.
4,065 reviews314 followers
June 27, 2015
This review was originally posted on Cocktails and Books.

Most of you know that I previously read and reviewed Queen of Someday by Sherry D. Ficklin last year. And how much I absolutely loved it. When I hopped on Goodreads to see if book two had been released I was thrilled that Sherry herself left the email address to her publishing company so fans of Book One in the Stolen Empire series could ask for an AEC of book two. And email I did! I deliberately waited about a week, a long and agonizing week, until I knew I would have the time it would take to devour Queen of Tomorrow.  

Picking up exactly where book one leaves off we have Sophie, the newly named Catherine the Great, still very much loathing her new husband yet completely eager to wear the crown. She is pleasing to look at and has a personality that makes everyone around her eager to bask in her glow. Yet she is absolutely humble and rules her little piece of land justly and with honor. Shortly after the book begins we find Catherine and her husband summoned to the queen's side. Naturally, her husband’s mistress tags along irking both Catherine and the queen herself. Upon arriving Catherine is rushed to the queen's physician due to her having been ill. Although she believes it is simply due to stress and overexertion it is discovered that Sophie is pregnant. Leaving his mistress completely in the lurch, Prince Peter now acts as a doting husband to his "little mother", however Sophie cannot wait to share her wonderful news with the true love of her life.

After an unfortunate accident sends Princess Sophie defending a stone staircase face first and suffering a miscarriage, the queen demands she and Peter try again. Tragically Peter instead develops an illness that threatens everything Sophie has worked so hard for and she is sent back to the Winter Palace to try to produce an heir "by any means necessary".

To accurately review this book I have to first describe the incredible writing style Ms. Ficklin possesses. With each word she draws you in to her oh so believable characters and their development. Sophie is no longer the sweet and innocent girl from book one. Court politics now demand that she become as ruthless as the Empress and even more cunning. It is so easy to see Sophie as she walks through the halls or mingles with guests at parties thrown specifically to enhance her status as future Queen. Without graphic detail Ficklin creates a romance that is tasteful and achingly beautiful proving that you do not need a million sexual adjectives to accurately portray what love is.

I'm eagerly awaiting book three "Queen of Always" when Sherry will bring the story if Catherine the Great to a close and most likely bring me to tears.

 

*NOTE: I received the book as an ARC from Clean Teen Publishing in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. This book was reviewed by a member of the review staff at Cocktails and Books. The name of the reviewer can be found under the post categories.

Profile Image for Melissa (thereaderandthechef).
529 reviews169 followers
July 26, 2015
I never thought Queen of Tomorrow, and also it's predecessor Queen of Someday, would be so brutal to my heart. It's been a couple of days since I read them back-to-back and I still can't quite recover. I'm stunned, repulsed, heart-broken and in awe at the same time. Both books were incredible reads, but Queen of Tomorrow was what sealed the deal for me to truly fall in love with the series.


Queen of Tomorrow continues the tale of young future queen of Russia, Sophie-now known as Catherine-as she carries on her new married life with Prince Peter. There's no love or intimacy between them, product of Peter's wrath against her because of her secret relationship with one of his best friends. But although Sophie is alone at court, constantly suffering at the hands of her husband and harsh rule of the Empress, she strikes back with all she's got in this war of beauty, power and betrayal.


Sophie (she will always be Sophie to me) is such a strong character. It amazes me how, despite every awful thing or difficult situation that she goes through, she manages to rise out of it stronger and wiser than ever. I'm not saying she's a perfect person. She has many faults and sins, but in comparison to everyone else at court, I think she has the best heart of all.


But the best thing about this book is, hands down, how complicated life at court is. It's not that I love it for how awesome it is (because it's not) but one can certainly appreciate all the trickery, backstabbing and complicated plotting. It constantly made my head swim and cringe non-stop. It also made me realize that, if I had lived in the time of Catherine the Great, I would NEVER have survived this kind of life. It's just too much and not worth it. 


The only thing I'm not sure about this book was the romance in it. I really did not feel anything, I didn't fall in love or root for someone, but maybe it's because I'm still mourning for the loss of her first love. Also, Queen of Tomorrowrealistically protrays how poorly women were treated back in the days, abuse and raping, so that may have been another reason why it didn't feel like a romantic read. 


Overall, Queen of Tomorrow is a read worthy of your time if you enjoy reading historical fiction. I'm looking forward to read the final book and find out if Sophie will be having a sort of HEA or not. I hope she does, but something tells me I shouldn't hold my breath.

*This review can also be found at The Reader and the Chef. Thanks go out to tour host & author for the eARC copy in exchange for my honest opinion.*
Profile Image for ᒪᗴᗩᕼ .
1,429 reviews131 followers
June 6, 2016
Gone is the innocent girl named Sophie...replaced with the ever evolving Catherine...

Book Title: Queen of Tomorrow
Author: Sherry D. Ficklin
Series: Stolen Empire #2
Genre: Historical Fiction, Older YA
Source: Own Kindle E-Book


☆My Pick for Book Theme Song: I Will Not Bow by Breaking Benjamin --For Catherine (Sophie), because she's sooo ready to kick some ass.

Ratings Breakdown

Plot: 5/5
Characters: 5/5
The Feels: 4/5
Theme: 4/5
Flow: 5/5
Backdrop (World Building): 5/5
Originality: 5/5
Book Cover: 5/5
Ending: 4/5. Cliffhanger: more or less

Will I continue this series? Yes!!! I even requested it from the library, and they purchased it like three days later.

description
4.7/5 STARS

My Thoughts

First off…I'm not going to lie, I really missed the video's that book One had. That being said I was totally blown away by book Two. I love this intriguing an imaginative tale of Catherine the Great. How much this follows the real and actual story of her life really doesn't matter to me. I believe this is toted as being based in truth with embellishments along the way to fill in the blanks, or something like that…My only real complaint is the length of the book, I wanted it to be a little longer.

Sex Factor: This has some scenes that are graphic (but not too graphic), but, they are a part of the story and it wouldn't have had the impact on me that it did without them.
Profile Image for Kelly Gunderman.
Author 2 books77 followers
July 10, 2015
Check out this and other reviews on my blog, Here's to Happy Endings.

Rarely have I come across a second book in a series that is even close to being as good as the first. This is one of those cases where I actually enjoyed the second book better than the first.

I read this book in less than a day, I loved it so much.

The story picks up where the previous one ended (just a few months later), and does so seamlessly. It picks right back up on the action, the love story, which isn’t so much of the love square that it was in the previous book. Actually, it seems more of a forbidden love story between just Sophie (now Catherine), and Sergei. A lot happens in this book (and I hate to say too much because I don’t want to mention any spoilers, especially if you haven’t read the first book), and there isn’t a dull chapter in the entire thing.

If you thought poor Catherine couldn’t get a break in the first book, this one is even worse. She has to endure a ridiculous amount of hardships and such horrible treatment from not only the empress, but also from Peter, her own husband. She has come a long way since the last book, and her maturity and growth as a person really shines through. I love reading a book series that allows you to see how a character really develops, and Queen of Tomorrow does not disappoint. While all the hardships and abuse she has to endure keeps her kindhearted and loving throughout most of the book, the end of the book is quite a surprise, and I honestly didn’t expect it.

If you enjoyed the first book, Queen of Tomorrow, this book is a must-read. It’s every bit as amazing as the first, if not better.

I honestly have no negative comments about this book. It was an amazing read, and the cliffhanger at the end really makes me look forward to the final book in the series, Queen of Always.

Note: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Rach.
179 reviews183 followers
Shelved as 'to-read-asap'
December 28, 2014
THE COVER.
IT'S AS BEAUTIFUL AS THE FIRST ONE.
COME TO ME NOW PLEASE
Profile Image for Courtney Toohey.
56 reviews32 followers
September 19, 2015
Gone is the innocent girl from Prussia, harboring lofty hopes of love and blissful marriage. When Sophie was baptized as Catherine, her hopes of happiness were washed away with her sins. All that was left was a strong sense of duty and an urgent need for survival.
Catherine’s once innocent hopes were snatched away from her after a very unfortunate series of youthful choices followed by spiteful consequences, making her rely on her intelligence to endure. Her tasks, while simple in concept, proved insurmountably complicated in execution. Yet despite her sorrow, she still managed to find suitable solutions to each obstacle as they presented themselves. Instead of crumbling under the weight of all she had lost, she rose to the impossible occasion.
In Queen of Someday, Sherry Ficklin weaves the tale of a young girl with the chance at a tangible happy ever after. At her fingertips lay the envy of every girl in Russia and every kingdom at its boarders. But just when it all begins to fall into place, it is upheaved in the most destructible of ways. With no time to acclimate to the stark chance in scenario, Ficklin carries the downtrodden Sophie of Prussia and pushes her to become Catherine of Russia. This forces Catherine to sort out exactly who she needed to become, not simply who she wanted to be. To be an author with such control over your characters is quite a remarkable feat to behold, and Ficklin facilitates this transition with perfect ease.
Yet Catherine is not the only character Ficklin ushered into this next installment of The Stolen Empire that was demanded to adapt. What had seemingly appeared as a series of innocent actions soon transformed into life-altering chaos, the ripples of which were felt by everyone. What’s more is that none of these effects produced favorable results. The once likeable Empress soon becomes vile and villainous. Any suspicions that had been held concerning Peter were only confirmed, as demonstrated by his extracurricular activities. Those who were once close and held in high esteem to Catherine swiftly proved with finality whether or not they were ever worthy of the honor. Through these revelations, we are able to see how fragile arranges relationships can be, and how the opinions of others can falter.
Ficklin does something that not many authors can do. She takes characters that were well established as either good or bad, and successfully flips our view of each of them. It takes creativity to make a character likable. It takes talent to take that same character and make them unlikable. I found myself becoming insecure in my opinions of each character; because I knew it was likely that they would soon change yet again. The best books are comprised of characters that you can neither predict nor command, and Ficklin proves this.
I give Queen of Tomorrow 5 out of 5 stars. The way that this story has unfolded is nothing short of magnificent. You will be kept on the edge of your seat, eager to know who will come out victorious in their quest for the Russian crown.
Profile Image for Liz's Book Bucket List.
324 reviews64 followers
January 10, 2016
{This book was provided by Netgalley in exchange for an honest reveiw}

This book was just as great as the first. This was the book series that got me addicted to reading historical fiction. After having read the first book in this great series, I ran out and bought as many YA historical fiction books that I could get my hands on. I can’t wait to see what happens in the concluding book in this series.

The writing in this book was amazing. It was full of beautiful descriptions without being too wordy. The book flowed so perfectly, with fast-paced thrills and dark intense scenes. I can’t believe that Ficklin was able to squeeze so much plot into such a short book. I felt like so much happened in this book, which was great because there was no fluff that didn’t drive the plot forward.

I really love the setting of this story, although I know very little about the real Catherine. I really liked the politics in this book, but I got confused several times because the book was written as if the reader already should know the history of the countries. I wish that there was more set up so that I could have fully been absorbed into that aspect of the book.

I loved the character development in this book. This book has some of the best character development that I have ever read. Catherine’s personal character growth is inspiring. I love how gracefully she is able to navigate court politics and forbidden romance. I also liked that this book gave a little more insight into Price Peter’s character. In the first book, I really didn’t feel anything toward Peter other than distaste, but this book made me feel more empathetic towards what he has had to endure.

Overall, I really liked the second installment in this wonderful series. I think that this book series would be a great introduction into YA historical fiction. I am also really excited that Ficklin has other books she has written that I am planning on picking up.
Profile Image for Chioma.
48 reviews33 followers
July 7, 2015
Gosh, where do I begin? Well let's see..... This book has made me curse, scream in agony, cry, and has left my heart and sole in a state of confusion as well as longing for more. The worst part about it (or should I say the BEST part) is that I loved and relished in every second of it. The story kicks off as Sophia continues to pursue power and control of Russia even as her life is threatened and one obstacle over another tries to make her falter. Queen of Tomorrow leaves behind many of the old conflicts of the first book and deals with the bigger problems now at hand with a war breaking out, alliances forming, and the question of who will be the next in line for the throne are raised.

The plot in this book and whole series really has so many dimensions to it. Every character, their motives, and every relationship is complex. Oh and do not even get me started on the romance! The love scenes are beautifully done and they can get pretty steamy. You will feel ALL THE FEELS (If you know what I mean). The chemistry between characters leaves you desiring them to be happily together, but then conflicted as you realize how their relationship affects the other characters. You never are sure where the story will go and you are left to ride along and watch it all unfold. The protagonist Sophia (aka Catherine) is such a strong, intelligent female character. She faces many hardships, but still is able to use her wit to save herself and those she cares for. She is tested in every way possible, but she still remains true to her roots, virtues, and pride. Sophia is definitely one of the best female characters I have read in the YA genre and one I highly respect.

This book is able to take the glamour of royal life to the next level by portraying what actual takes place behind all the riches and fairy tale lifestyles. As for the cons of this book, there are none known to me.
Profile Image for Keren Hughes.
Author 19 books211 followers
October 26, 2014
Oh my word, this book is amazing. I had thought that Sherry needed to go a long way to top book one because I was so swept away by it, but this book tops it and then some!!
I am deeply in love with Sergei and I hate Peter with a vengeance. He is a despicable, deplorable excuse for a human being.
Truth be told, this book is one of my favourites in a long time. Everything from the plot, to the characters, to the pacing is just perfect.
There wasn't anything that felt too rushed or too slow. There wasn't anything I didn't enjoy, save for one scene that I will leave you to discover for yourself. And even then, the scene needed to happen to make the story what it was.
I think Catherine is one of the strongest lead characters I have come across. She takes so much in her stride. Things that would break any ordinary person do not break her, they only strengthen her resolve. She amazes me.
The Empress, as ever, is a wicked, wily bitch who would sell her own Grandmother (a British saying if ever there was one). She is deplorable in ways unimaginable.
Sherry Ficklin has blown me away with this book. The fact I know nothing of the historical characters she describes matters not. It's her version of the characters I am interested in. From the good guys to the utterly detestable, she writes them truly marvelously.
A beautifully executed story, with plot twists and turns that keep you on your toes, Queen of Tomorrow will keep you entertained to the last.
I am dying for the next book and know that whatever she has in store, Sherry will deliver it in style.
Profile Image for Shelley.
5,101 reviews458 followers
November 19, 2015
**I received this book for free from (Publisher) via (NetGalley) in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.**

*Genre* Historical, Romance
*Rating* 4.0

*Full Review Pending*

Queen of Tomorrow is the second installment in the Stolen Empire trilogy by author Sherry D. Ficklin. Queen of Tomorrow is a loosely based YA historical fiction about the rise of Russian Empress Catherine II. Catherine was the longest serving female ruler in Russian history (July 9, 1762-November 17, 1796). A fact that sometimes gets downplayed by the way she loved, the way she lived, the number of men she took to her bed, and the way she came to power on the back of a coup that overthrew her first husband.

*Full Review Posted @ Gizmos Reviews 11/19/2015*

http://gizmosreviews.blogspot.com/201...

*Recvd 06/09/2015 via NetGalley* Published: July 14th 2015 by Clean Teen Publishing
Profile Image for Leianne Stevens.
175 reviews7 followers
August 14, 2015
Reviewed for Cocktails & Books

Most of you know that I previously read and reviewed Queen of Someday by Sherry D. Ficklin last year. And how much I absolutely loved it. When I hopped on Goodreads to see if book two had been released I was thrilled that Sherry herself left the email address to her publishing company so fans of Book One in the Stolen Empire series could ask for an AEC of book two. And email I did! I deliberately waited about a week, a long and agonizing week, until I knew I would have the time it would take to devour Queen of Tomorrow.

Picking up exactly where book one leaves off we have Sophie, the newly named Catherine the Great, still very much loathing her new husband yet completely eager to wear the crown. She is pleasing to look at and has a personality that makes everyone around her eager to bask in her glow. Yet she is absolutely humble and rules her little piece of land justly and with honor. Shortly after the book begins we find Catherine and her husband summoned to the queen’s side. Naturally, her husband’s mistress tags along irking both Catherine and the queen herself. Upon arriving Catherine is rushed to the queen’s physician due to her having been ill. Although she believes it is simply due to stress and overexertion it is discovered that Sophie is pregnant. Leaving his mistress completely in the lurch, Prince Peter now acts as a doting husband to his “little mother”, however Sophie cannot wait to share her wonderful news with the true love of her life.

After an unfortunate accident sends Princess Sophie defending a stone staircase face first and suffering a miscarriage, the queen demands she and Peter try again. Tragically Peter instead develops an illness that threatens everything Sophie has worked so hard for and she is sent back to the Winter Palace to try to produce an heir “by any means necessary”.
To accurately review this book I have to first describe the incredible writing style Ms. Ficklin possesses. With each word she draws you in to her oh so believable characters and their development. Sophie is no longer the sweet and innocent girl from book one. Court politics now demand that she become as ruthless as the Empress and even more cunning. It is so easy to see Sophie as she walks through the halls or mingles with guests at parties thrown specifically to enhance her status as future Queen. Without graphic detail Ficklin creates a romance that is tasteful and achingly beautiful proving that you do not need a million sexual adjectives to accurately portray what love is.

I’m eagerly awaiting book three “Queen of Always” when Sherry will bring the story if Catherine the Great to a close and most likely bring me to tears.

*NOTE: I received the book as an ARC from Clean Teen Publishing in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.
Profile Image for ☕️Kimberly  (Caffeinated Reviewer).
2,961 reviews630 followers
July 10, 2015
Catherine is now the Grand Duchess of Russia and wed to Peter the Grand Duke. Under the ever-watchful eye of the Empress, Catherine must navigate the courts, appease the Empress, and watch as her husband openly taunts his mistress. Ficklin skillfully draws us back into the story as it picks up right where the Queen of Someday ended. She has this wonderful ability to lure the reader into her story and make them care about the characters.

Watching Catherine create allies, spread her wings and find love all while suffering held me spellbound. I found myself cheering for this clever young woman. While it is true that Ficklin took, liberties particularly with the time line, her interpretation of Catherine the Great only made me eager to learn more about this period in history.

Oranienbaum Palace and Winter Place were both beautifully described and one would think with all the celebrations, gowns and gaiety that these would be fairy tale places to live. Nothing could be further from the truth because behind corridors, there is drama, political maneuvering, backstabbing and power plays. No one is safe; especially with the unrest in Prussia, England and Australia.

Catherine endures more than most could handle throughout Queen of Tomorrow and each scar is like armor making her strong, smarter and wiser. She must control Peter, appease the Queen, gain allies and take care of the people. It is like a wild game of Chess and I was impressed as she carefully considered each move. She conducts herself like a lady and I admire that about her. Do not be fooled into thinking you can walk all over her, because the girl has some wicked spunk. Someone she manages to still genuinely care about people, especially the lower class in her kingdom. Seeing her work the court council to her advantage was a thrill and watching take on the Empress gave me goosebumps.

Queen of Tomorrow was action-packed, intense and darker than the first. Be warned there are violent acts including abuse and rape. Ficklin does managed to show happy moments, weaving in love and kindness despite the circumstances. The ending sets us up perfectly for Queen of Always, which releases in September and I cannot wait to get my hands on it.

Copy provided by publisher. This review was originally posted on Caffeinated Book Reviewer
Profile Image for Pamela.
71 reviews2 followers
June 22, 2015
This book is and forever will be a surprise. I just can't find the right words to describe it except surprise.
Frankly I disliked the first book in the series a lot. A reviewer said this was a dark book, I have to agree. It is indeed dark and intriguing---because it is dark.

The first book compared to this seems so silly. This is a very dangerous game of politics and that's what made me liked it and continued it to the very end that i was left blinking when i reached the authors note.

Catherine has grown up--Praise God. She is not more the naive girl who came to court seeking a prince who would sweep her feet off the floor and play harps to her, calling her name in a sweet as sugar tone---Oops narrating my dreams now.
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Catherine known as Sophie changed a lot, finally she was taking action and playing the games of court really well in fact too good but with this new Sophie also came with brutality. There was no space for meekness in her heart.
In fact almost all the head-characters were villains which was something interesting and what captivated me. The more I read, the more i want to know how far they would take each wicked plot too.
It was overall intriguing and dark but there were some unnecessary times when catherine just aced far too childish and unstable. Those times hardly came so its all cool.
As for catherine, I could say she was selfish but that was not always the case and why i thought that word appropriate was everything she does had a motive and when she doesn't do something without a motive were few.
They were a few spelling errors which wasn't noticeable as my brain corrected before i even noticed it.

This quite an interesting catching read.
I received this book for Netgalley in exchange of a honest review.
Profile Image for Rebecca.
764 reviews9 followers
September 29, 2016
This was a great addition to a series I am loving and a great book by a newly favourite author. This book was gripping, fast paced and a great book which I would recommend to anyone.

The main character is Catherine, she is reeling from the events of the first book and trying to make the best political moves for herself. However with the empress and her husband attacking her both politically and physically she has even more reason to fight against the system that has doomed her to be eternally unhappy. I honestly hope in the next book she puts away the dresses, dons some armor and kick some serious arse as this is what I had predicted from the start and I seriously can'tr wait for it to happen to those who have had it in for her.

The most noteworthy secondary characters are the empress (Elizabeth), the prince (Peter) and Sergei. Elizabeth is a bitch in full form for this book making readers hate her even more, if that was at all possible. Peter is just as evil as Elizabeth in this book being cruel and abusive to Catherine in order to be able to claim an heir. Sergei is the one bit of solace Catherine gets from the other harmful forces in her life, he truly loves her however that could doom them both.

The storyline is brilliantly original and exceptionally well written gripping and emotional and the pacing flawless, yet again ending on another cliffhanger which makes me simply desperate to read the next book in the series however I will make myself wait to enjoy this series as long as possible.

5 stars!!!!
Profile Image for Stephanie (Bookfever).
972 reviews113 followers
September 3, 2015
Eventhough Queen of Tomorrow has only 280 pages, a lot happens in it. Just like the first book it has its fair share of drama, romance and political intrigue.

I think I liked this book a little better than the first one. I'm still not Catherine's biggest fan, but she didn't quite annoy me as much as she did before. I guess she's growing up more.

I don't know if it's just me but I felt like Queen of Tomorrow was more focused on the political aspect. There was still romance of course, but it just felt like that.

Speaking of the romance, I still like Sergei, but it was like he let Catherine step all over him. Or maybe he's just completely blinded by his love for her? I don't know, but at one point I was just like, dude grow a pair...

Peter was still a complete asshole, so that part of the story did make me feel bad for Catherine. But she remained strong and I really admired that.

The writing was really good. Probably my favorite thing in this book. It flowed easily and the story read very quickly, like I said, a lot happened.

And just like the first book, Queen of Tomorrow ended with a bang and I gotta say I'm really excited for the next and final book!
Profile Image for Madison Vessels.
358 reviews1 follower
June 18, 2015
First, I am sorry for how long it took me to get to this review.

I have to say that I wasn't sure this book would top my love of the first and I am happy to say that I was wrong. Sophie is such a strong character and I loved that I was able to still see some of her former personality grow and adapt to the new world in which was thrust upon her.

The story is well written and beautiful. It captivates you from the first moment you open the book. It is also extremely easy to read without being "simple." The characters in the series are developing and growing individually and together and I love that you get to see Sophie show signs of how great a queen she will someday be.

I also have to say that I love that there was a new love introduced subtly for the future. I know that the actual story of Catherine is wrought with lovers and I love that Ficklin creates an amazing setting and background for them to make their entrances without Sophie seeming fickle.

AND even though its in a completely different way than before, I love that Alexander is back with his young wife!!!


OVERALL::: LOVE LOVE LOVE this series

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