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The Queen Underneath

2.81  ·  Rating details ·  173 ratings  ·  62 reviews
The Above and the Under have a tenuous truce that is shattered after the death of both their respective rulers. Gemma, the new queen of Under, must throw history aside and team up with Tollan, the heir to the Above throne, in order to take down a power that seeks to rule them all.

Their group of rebels is comprised of an assassin, a sex worker, and a palace servant from Ab
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published May 8th 2018 by Page Street
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Average rating 2.81  · 
Rating details
 ·  173 ratings  ·  62 reviews

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destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
DNF @ 50pg

I DNFed this one so fast that I won't be rating it, but I think I'm doing the book a mercy in this decision, because if I'd read enough of it to justify a star rating, I'm pretty sure it would've been a measly 1 (maybe 2, at most).

I received this as an ARC from the publishing house without requesting it, but it sounded like an interesting premise, so I decided to give it a try (plus, the cover is kinda gorgeous, and I'm a sucker for a pretty cover). Unfortunately, the writing is a dis
Be prepared for a long winded review where I completely lose my mind and go on bullet point rants
*Thank you so much to Page Street for sending me over a copy for this!! I super appreciate it, it was a fantastic surprise, and it did not change my opinion of it at all!*

To be honest, I had never heard of this book before the kind and gracious people over at Page Street sent me this book and it ended up in my mailbox. It sounded like such an interesting premise, and when I saw on a little piece of p
Feb 02, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: publisher-arc
Review coming soon.
Vicky Again
UPDATE: found out this book is actually 17+ and is NA. so there's that.

I'm sorry, but this book is a Hot Mess™.

I really wanted to like it, but I came out of it very, very confused & deeply unsatisfied.

Right from the start I was just very, very confused. Because really big things happen in the first chapter and the way they're written is that they're downplayed. Like, "Ooh, the Queen of Under & King of Above are both dead on the same day; cool beans."

I felt like this was what the whole novel w
Heather (The Sassy Book Geek)
Review Originally Posted On The Sassy Book Geek

**** Thank you to Page Street Publishing for the copy in exchange for an honest review****

Trigger Warnings: (Fairly Strong) Sexual Content, Sexual Assault, Miscarriage, Suicide, and Torture/Violence

I always hate when I have to write a negative review for a book especially when a book was sent to me for said review. But I like to give you guys, my readers, my honest opinion and my honest opinion about “The Queen Underneath” is that it is just…..a
Kate (Feathered Turtle Press)
Jun 10, 2018 rated it did not like it

Just 'cause you've cooked a plate of food, doesn't mean you can open a restaurant.

And just 'cause you've written a book, doesn't mean it's worth publishing.

The Queen Underneath reads like your first shot at writing as a young teen: a gazillion helpings of soap opera-grade drama piled into a stunted wordcount, executed without a trace of forethought, nuance or skill.

– Stylish cover
– Surprisingly well-developed background/setting given overall quality
– Writing is bafflingly confident
– The author u
(DNF @ 56%)

Recommended By: Pre-publication hype
Acquired: Purchased in hard cover
Content Warnings: Homophobia, Violence, Pregnancy/Miscarriage, Graphic Sex

The Good: Um, the cover is pretty? I swear I can’t think of a single redeeming quality about this book that at all outweighs the bad. I guess I didn’t scream and cuss at it like I did Red Rising , but that’s a pretty low bar to meet.

The Bad: I’ll sum it up by saying that this book is an adult fantasy novel crammed into less than 300 pages a
I'm gonna hold off on rating this one until I can decide what seems right, because I am very on the fence. And I feel like I have a LOT to say, so review coming soon HERE!... ...more
All Things Urban Fantasy
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy.

THE QUEEN UNDERNEATH grabbed me from the minute I pulled it out of the envelope from the publisher. I'm not sure what exactly sucked me in (maybe the gorgeous cover?), but I started reading and didn't stop until I was finished a few hours later. Action packed and full of plot twists, THE QUEEN UNDERNEATH sucks the reader into the world of Yigris, making you want to discover all of its secrets.

And secrets abound in THE QUEEN UNDERNEATH! There were a lot
Cristine Mermaid
Mar 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: scifi-fantasy
Fantastic read. The action starts right away and doesn't let up through out the entire book. I admired the (new) Queen , Gemma, right from the start and was impressed with her multi layered, complicated, bad-ass personality. The two worlds (under/above) intrigued me immensely as I saw a lot of parallels with the above and our own world to a degree. I admired the world 'under' where they worshiped the goddess, women owned their lives and were sexually free. Anyone who knows me knows how disgustin ...more
Jul 22, 2018 rated it did not like it
Absolutely disgustingly awful. Obscene.
A backwards step for humanity.

“Confused and dazed, Tollan stared as she spit on his cock-once, then twice, and then a third time... He turned and saw Wince rubbing spit onto his own cock.” (Pg 44)

This book is a spewing of child-like language, porn-like vulgarity, and useless characters mashed together in a poorly constructed plot and dashed with abusive, love triangle relationships.

Filak prides herself on what she believes are complex, diverse, and pro
Jun 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned-read, ya-read
This was really sweet. The only reason it didn't get five stars is that it had a lot of sexual themes and that's not really what I'm into. I liked how it was handled and I appreciate the way Filak treats teenage boy sexual desire in particular, I just am also asexual and so felt like it pulled me out of the story.

The worldbuilding here is really cool!! I wish we'd had a map on the inside cover! The way the worlds work and how their values clash and contradict each other just within Yigris was r
Dec 30, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018-books, new-adult
It had a good premise. The characters were good. The setting, great. A world divided and considered as the Above and the Under really was interesting but wasn't truly given the greatest backstory. I liked the concept but felt like the ending was rushed just a bit and then when it did end not everything was gone over about what happened to certain characters.

I really just feel unfulfilled after finishing this book because there could've been so much more that she could have covered to give it a
Jul 08, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: for-review, 2018
This review was originally posted on Blame It On The Books

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.I was really excited and honored to receive an ARC of The Queen Underneath from Page Street Publishing. The cover is absolutely stunning (I believe on the finished copy there is gold foil) and the story sounded really intriguing. After reading the synopsis, I was already imagining t
Caitlyn Morris
May 19, 2018 rated it liked it
I enjoyed this strange little book but it should not be classified as YA. I went into it thinking it was YA and was a little shocked by how sexually graphic it was. I don’t have any issues with adult books with adult themes as I am an adult, but I would not want this is a younger person’s hands. Lots of nudity, graphic sex, rape, pregnancy, miscarriage, sex workers. And not just talk of but actually descriptions and events. Otherwise I liked the characters and found the world intriguing. It was ...more
Apr 28, 2019 rated it it was ok
Well... this was certainly... a book. That started out not amazing, but decent and then turned into... a giant pile of WTF.

Review to come. (So much material dear lord)
Dec 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
THE QUEEN UNDERNEATH is a racy upper YA fantasy about power, revenge, and love. With imaginative world building, language that is sensuous one moment and poetically lovely the next, and a fast-paced storyline that keeps pages turning, Stacey Filak’s debut is a testament to the strength of a young woman who knows what she wants. Delightfully scintillating.
Apr 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc-review-book
** actual 4.3 stars **

- received ARC from publisher in exchange for review -

This novel really surprised me. I was not sure what to expect from it, but I adored the journey throughout the majority of the story. Gemma is a strong character, and enjoyable to follow. She is passionate, and a true leader. As the perspectives switch among the various characters in their misfit group of friends, I enjoyed hearing from Tollan (the King of the Above world) and his friend, W___.

The setting combination o
Easily the worst book I've read so far this year.

Mini review to come.
Aug 30, 2018 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 13, 2019 rated it liked it
The Queen Underneath⭐⭐⭐1/2 (Prick me this was fun)
Read full review at:

I found it funny, engaging and well paced. From the first page to the last there’s hardly a dull moment. There’s a lot of sexual themes in this book, which I don’t mind. They felt like they belonged and added a ”coming of age” vibe and openly questioned norms and prejudice. Which I’m all for! But it was very graphic at times, which many readers should be made aware of beforehand. T
May 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Thank you to Page Street Books for a copy of the ARC in exchange for a fair review.

Gemma is going to meet the King Above and she is baring bad news, but she is even more shocked when Prince Tollan meets her and informs her that he is the new King Above, and he is taken aback when she informs him that she is the new Queen Below.

However, they both know something is wrong when they compare the way the King and Queen died and it was similar and when Prince Tollan falls ill, Gemma begins to suspect t
Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids
This is another book with such an intriguing premise. When I read that this book is, "a spin on Sleeping Beauty that melds Leigh Bardugo with Victoria Aveyard-with a dash of sexiness and grit", I jumped right into it. Unfortunately this book didn't hold up to it's expectations. This story had so much potential too. I really tried to like it, but there was so much I felt that was missing from the story. I don't know if it was me or the book, though I think it was more of the later. I almost want ...more
Neha Thakkar
Jan 16, 2021 rated it it was ok
I’m not sure what this was. Fantasy? Erotica? Romance? It certainly is NOT YA: substituting “prick” for the F word does not make this somehow “clean”. The premise is great, the cover is GORGEOUS, but too many subplots, poorly developed characters, and strange neatly tied endings add up to a terrible book. It’s also hard to follow and some small moments are made HUGE, whereas some huge moments are made small. IE: She has a miscarriage and then storms the palace!
* fast paced
* i could've counted the number of times "prick" and "balls" were used
* it had the capability for a wonderful reading but it didn't
* the only thing that made me pull up the book to read in a blink of matter was the fact that the heir falls for a sex worker who is a friend of Queen of Under.
* Under is a place, we would love to explore. A place for thieves, and assassins.
Jessica Riches
May 08, 2020 rated it did not like it
I tried. I made it almost half-way through! It sounded like my cup of tea. It really was NOT. I couldn't picture anything, the characters were undeveloped, the plot jumpy... And then there's the super awkward and weirdly graphic fake sex scene (I know, I know!)-- so unnecessary and creepy! DEFINITELY not YA, people. Overall, it was a DNF. ...more
Sep 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book! I enjoyed the world building. I enjoyed some of the characters. I also enjoyed the storyline. The pacing was a bit fast and I felt the magic system and some aspects of the world could have been explained better. Overall an enjoyable read. Also this book is most definitely Adult and not Young Adult.
Katie (Melting Pages)
May 18, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy
Actual Rating: 2.5

Man oh man. This book was definitely interesting, and surprisingly, I did find it really enjoyable despite the fact that I had a lot of issues with it. I have a LOT to say about this book, and so you are aware, this review WILL have SPOILERS, so read at your own risk!

So first I want to say that the premise of this book sounded so interesting, and it was one of my most anticipated reads for May because of the synopsis. BUT, once we got into the book it was completely different t
Aug 27, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: lgbtq-characters
This entire book was just yikes. I picked it up on a whim from the library (yes, I judge books by their covers) and for once, I actually regret it. I had literally no idea what was going on at any point. Ever. I wish I was joking, but the real joke here is the mess of words called a "plot." I hate to be so negative in my reviews, but there really weren't any redeeming factors for this one. ...more
Jun 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I truly loved it! Stacey shared the beta with me a couple of years ago and I was hooked then and there. The wait between the teaser and the actual book was too long but I was well rewarded.
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