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The Shadow Queen

(Ravenspire #1)

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  17,808 ratings  ·  2,888 reviews
Lorelai Diederich, crown princess and fugitive at large, has one mission: kill the wicked queen who took both the Ravenspire throne and the life of her father. To do that, Lorelai needs to use the one weapon she and Queen Irina have in common—magic. She’ll have to be stronger, faster, and more powerful than Irina, the most dangerous sorceress Ravenspire has ever seen.

In th
Hardcover, 390 pages
Published February 16th 2016 by Balzer + Bray
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C.J. I'm not sure yet. I've sold the first two. We'll see what happens from there. :)…moreI'm not sure yet. I've sold the first two. We'll see what happens from there. :)(less)
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Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.75  · 
Rating details
 ·  17,808 ratings  ·  2,888 reviews

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Sasha Alsberg
Jan 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
LOVED this book! Such a phenomenal retelling of Snow White!
Emily May
Aug 27, 2015 rated it did not like it
This is a book about a girl who should be queen, rounding up her band of outsiders to reclaim her stolen kingdom with some magical help. Oh wait a second, haven’t we heard this one before?

Oh yeah! Maybe I’m mistaken, but it sounds like the plot of about 80% of YA fantasy novels.

I read 5 chapters of The Shadow Queen before going to sleep the other night and I woke up the next day and couldn’t remember what book I was in. All the characters were mixed up in my head with those from every other YA
Khanh, first of her name, mother of bunnies
Irina’s smile disappeared. “I don’t require all of the princess, huntsman.”

A chill raced over Kol’s skin. “I don’t understand. Our oath said—”

She leaned forward, her eyes pinning Kol where he stood. “You agreed to do whatever I asked of you. And I am asking you to bring me the princess’s heart.”

I feel like this book wants to be a mixture of Snow White and the Huntsman and the Grisha series and failed spectacularly at both, not least because it was so jaw-achingly dull. You've got your terrif
Maria V. Snyder
Jul 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Normally I avoid fairy tale re-tellings because I already know the story and how it ends. And I'm sure I'm missing lots of great stories due to this mistaken belief. I plan to change my :) When my editor sent me The Shadow Queen and ask me to read it for a potential blurb - my first thought was cool cover! And it wasn't until I started reading the book that I realized it had a few things in common with the story of Snow White - those things are poisoned apples, an evil queen, ...more
2.5 stars

The Shadow Queen is a YA retelling of Snow White. I always really love fairy tale retellings and the cover is beautiful, so color me intrigued.

The book begins with a “once upon a time” backstory that very quickly explains how the evil Queen Irina came to rule Ravenspire by killing the king and how Princess Lorelai became a fugitive at large. The story then picks up nine years later. Lorelai is determined to get her rightful throne back, but in the meantime she must get better at using
Mikee (ReadWithMikee)
Jul 24, 2015 rated it it was ok
I can't decide whether I was impressed or disappointed by this book. I loved the concepts and the world, and it reminded me a lot of the show Once Upon a Time and Snow White and The Huntsman, but I felt really indifferent towards the main character, Lorelai.

I simply did not particularly like or care for her. I actually found her to be super condescending and I don't even think she realized it. She was constantly saying, "Oh, I'm the queen of Ravenspire. I'm the most powerful mardushka in the lan
Thank Gosh I read this!!! I LOVE the characters so much!!! The Plot might get 4 stars, but the main couple and their relatioship definitely get 5 stars from me!!! So this book got my 4.5 adorable stars!!!! \(^^D)/

No review for awhile, guys. I want to read first! LOL! Whatever if you love fairy-tale retelling, just go and read it! Gosh I love Kol and Lorelai so much, Did I just say again that I love them?
Apr 11, 2015 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
I mean ... obviously I'm pretty biased here, but I love this story. :) It was so much fun to write! ...more
Nov 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya, fantasy
I thoroughly enjoyed this retelling of Snow White, enhanced with dragons (dragons are always an improvement.)
Review tk.

HarperCollins is trying to take over the world by publishing all the books with the title 'The (random word) Queen'
Always Pouting
Jul 03, 2019 rated it liked it
I didn't realize this was a snow white retelling, so I guess I read two books doing fairy tale retellings in a row. Lorelai is on the run, hiding out from her aunt Irina who uses her magic to control Revenspire and sit on the thrown that rightly belongs to Lorelai. It took me about a third of the book to get into the book, the book is YA and I guess I've gotten all old and sad and can't appreciate things as much so for the whole first third I was just like what is this writing. I did eventually ...more
Jessica ❁ ➳ Silverbow ➳ ❁
Reviewed by: Rabid Reads

DNF at 15%.

After a prologue that with few exceptions felt like it could've been copied from the Snow and Regina plot thread from Once Upon A Time (the early version, before things got complicated with back stories), the first chapter began in what felt like the opening sequence of every bad horror movie ever.

Then came a series of stock characters, and, really . . . making a race of dragons flat is an accomplishment that no author should ever attempt to replicate.

Oct 31, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016-releases
***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

The Shadow Queen by C.J. Redwine
Book One of the Ravenspire series
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: February 16, 2016
Rating: 4 stars
Source: ARC sent by the publisher

Summary (from Goodreads):

Lorelai Diederich, crown princess and fugitive at large, has one mission: kill the wicked queen who took both the Ravenspire throne and the life of her father. To do that, Lorelai needs to use the one weapon she and Queen Irina have in common—magic. She’ll
Andreea Pop
I remember loving Defiance by C.J. Redwine, even though to this day I still haven't picked up its sequels. And The Shadow Queen's awesome synopsis and its availability on Edelweiss instantly made me want to devour each and every word of it. So I did. Sadly, this resulted in my second ever 1-star rating.

This novel, this author, this story -- they all tried. And they failed miserably because they tried too much. Starting with the world, there are so many elements stuffed together in the hope
Nov 11, 2016 rated it liked it
“You don't go into battle because you're sure of victory. You go into battle because it's the right thing to do.”

going into this book was kind of like going into battle mostly because the start was so boring(it did redeem itself in the end but still)

The Shadow Queen: 3 stars

buddy reading with my favourite: maggie believe me without you to rant to or laugh with, I would have left this book halfway

Sadly, this is one of those books where things only start to get more interesting in the last fe
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
MY BLOG: Melissa Martin's Reading List


I am a sucker for the cover of this book, that is what made me see what this book was all about. The inside cover of the book is awesome too, it has a beautiful picture of the kingdom, they have these pictures on Amazon.


In the beginning of the book it tells how the evil Queen Irina kills Princess Lorelai's father and she is forced out of her kingdom Ravenspire with her brother Leo and a guard named Gabril. For the next nine years they stay in hiding with Ga
Joelle (Throne of books)
Get comfortable because this is going to be a long one.

Wow. Just, wow. I'm astonished at just how... Disappointed I am. The Shadow Queen tried my patience real thin. As far as retellings of Snow White go, this is by far my least favorite. Not only was the writing style bland, but get this, the world building, character development, AND the plot were 1) extremely under developed. And 2) Highly unoriginal.
Why the unoriginality? Let me tell you. Have you ever seen Snow White & The Huntsman? If
Oct 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I loved CJ's Defiance series,so I couldn't wait to get my hands on the book.

I adored Lorelai and Kol. They're awesome separate, but amazing together and their predicament makes things interesting. Never fear, there is still some delicious banter and sweet swoons. The cast of characters is relatively small and it was fantastic to have a fantasy story without eleventy billion names that all look the same. Each character is important and I can't even talk about the awesomeness that is Lorelai's bi
Darth J
Aug 18, 2015 marked it as no-longer-interested
Well, I originally really wanted to read this, but I've had to since cancel my preorder... ...more
Plot ~ Concept: ★★★★☆
~ Execution: ★☆☆☆☆½
Pacing: ★★☆☆☆
Writing style: ★★☆☆☆
Characters: ★★☆☆☆
World: ★★☆☆☆½
Enjoyment: ★☆☆☆☆½
Cover: ★★☆☆☆


○ The book started out strong, and there were certain elements that presented an intriguing take on the original tale of Snow White.
○ The Prologue was also intriguing.
○ Leo was a typical goofy, annoying younger sibling and I adored his banter with Lorelei. (view spoiler)
○The fact that dragons a
Sarah Elizabeth
2.5 stars
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.)

“You need to trust that I know what I’m doing.” Her voice was firm. “If you can’t trust me in this, how can you trust me to face Irina or rule an entire kingdom?”

There wasn’t anything horribly wrong with this book, I just didn’t enjoy it.

I felt quite sorry for both Kol and Lorelai in this story, both were put in difficult positions, and both had to try a
Lindsay Cummings
Jan 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2016
A dark and twisted retelling of the classic Snow White. While there have been many retellings, I was super super pleased to see that CJ Redwine's rendition is probably the most unique I've ever read! I absolutely loved her idea of "The Huntsman", and the evil queen is truly twisted in this one. Fun, plot twists and turns, and unique voices for each POV make this one a pleasant fantasy read. Fans of her previous DEFIANCE series will love THE SHADOW QUEEN, especially with such a strong female lead ...more
Helena Paris
Dec 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing

I thoroughly enjoyed this book! For all the reviews that claimed that it lacked originality...I don’t know about you, but I haven’t come across many Snow White retellings which included dragon-shapeshifters and telepathic gyrfalcons!


I also really enjoyed the Russian influences, even though the names were a bit much at times. The incantors, or spells, were really interesting, too. There was even a list of them in the back of the book, which I really appreciated.


Lorelai was an admirable and cour
Jodi Meadows
Official comments:

Magic, dragons, and royalty in hiding: THE SHADOW QUEEN hits all the right notes of an incredible epic fantasy. With charming characters, smart prose, and seamless worldbuilding, C.J. Redwine's fantastic retelling of Snow White is sure to cast a spell of wonder.

Unofficial comments:

The DEFIANCE Trilogy is one of my all time favorites, and THE SHADOW QUEEN is right up there with it. The story is beautiful. The characters are delightful (or scary, as the case may be). And the w
Dannii Elle
Actual rating 3.75/5 stars.

I really surprised myself by how much I found myself enjoying this story. The prologue held no appeal for me. It seemed a classic case of telling not showing and I worried for my enjoyment during the rest of the book if this unemotional start was anything to judge this by.

Thankfully this did pick up, although I was still not fully invested. I found the early dialogue very contrived and seemed to be largely created to fill the reader in on facts, rather than feel like a
I received an Advance Reader Copy from the publisher. This in no way impacted on my view.

When I first heard about this book, it was because of a lot of US reviewers who adored their copies, which came out last month. Once I found out Scholastic would be publishing The Shadow Queen over here, I immediately requested a copy, and was so grateful to be approved - thanks, Scholastic!

The Shadow Queen told the story of Lorelai, the crown princess to Ravenspire, who has been on the run from her evil ste
Katrin D
Aug 15, 2016 rated it did not like it
DNF at 50%

DISCLAIMER: I normally don't do disclaimers but this time, I'd really like to warn those who liked the book to just stop reading further. I'm currently super pissed off and I'm not going to be polite about this.

“Hair like sunshine, eyes like the midday sky, and pale skin that glowed against her delicate bones—it seemed impossible that someone so dainty and pretty could have used her magic to force an old woman to choke on apples all day long.

Because, as everyone knows, beautiful
myo (myonna reads)
yeah this book was like very mediocre, it’s a basic “girl who is royalty needs to get back her crown” given the year it was written it makes sense. i liked the story itself because i do love snow white but :/ i was not convinced with the characters or the boring romance.
Jun 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, audiobook

Why this book?

This seemed like a book for me

What I thought

I enjoyed the author’s twist on the Snow White retelling. I also really liked the characters especially Kol I have a soft spot for dragon shape shifters. There's also not alot of characters so each one is important to the story. There's a bit of romance,plenty of action and some great banter. I loved the whole fairytale feel of this book with kings , queens, princesses, princes, dragons and Ogres etc. It made a great fantasy boo
Helen 2.0
The Shadow Queen is a retelling of Snow White, except that Snow White is a magic-wielding gravity-defying ninja and the huntsman/Prince Charming is a fire-breathing dragon with a weak spot for frat parties. The first half of the book really held my attention and I thought during the first few chapters that this would be a five-star book for me. However, as the story went on it lost its charm and turned out to be a disappointment.

The main reason I could not give more than two stars was the flat c
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**Please read my FAQ before sending any requests: **

C.J. Redwine loves fairy tales, Harry Potter, and going to the movies. If the novel writing gig ever falls through, she’ll join the Avengers and wear a cape to work every day. To learn more about C.J., visit her website at

Other books in the series

Ravenspire (4 books)
  • The Wish Granter (Ravenspire, #2)
  • The Traitor Prince (Ravenspire, #3)
  • The Blood Spell (Ravenspire #4)

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