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02 March 2020

Book Review: The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon

I have had The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon sat on my shelf for the longest time - I even have a signed hardback. But I was intimidated by the massive length and kept putting it off. Which was a silly thing to do as it's actually incredible and amazing and a new favourite.

The Priory of the Orange Tree also has the honour of being the only book I have successfully used Whispersync for Voice with a book. I ended up downloading the ebook so it was easier to carry around, then got the Audible copy reduced because of it, and switched between my copies as I read. It was a first for me, and a very enjoyable experience. Also, it meant I knew how to pronounce everyone's names. I loved Liyah Summers' narration.

The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon coverAdd to Goodreads button
A world divided. A queendom without an heir. An ancient enemy awakens.

The House of Berethnet has ruled Inys for a thousand years. Still unwed, Queen Sabran the Ninth must conceive a daughter to protect her realm from destruction – but assassins are getting closer to her door.

Ead Duryan is an outsider at court. Though she has risen to the position of lady-in-waiting, she is loyal to a hidden society of mages. Ead keeps a watchful eye on Sabran, secretly protecting her with forbidden magic.

Across the dark sea, Tané has trained to be a dragonrider since she was a child, but is forced to make a choice that could see her life unravel.

Meanwhile, the divided East and West refuse to parley, and forces of chaos are rising from their sleep. 

Source: Purchase

5 Word Review: Power, duty, friendship, belief, love.

Content Warnings: Infertility, miscarriage, suicide.

You could probably tell from my Book Beginnings that I had a lot of big feelings going in to this book. And right from the start I was impressed by the drama.

You can feel what all of the passion that went in to Priory of the Orange tree when you're reading it. I got so caught up in the story and the characters, and for the longest time I thought I wouldn't be able to pick a favourite. Then I checked myself, because OBVIOUSLY Ead is the best. Honestly she's an astonishing character and I loved her so much, her development and complexities.

There were so many quotes that I could have picked out, but I thought that I would share my two favourite quotes from The Priory of the Orange Tree.

In the story, she has no name, like too many women in stories of old.
No woman should be made to fear that she was not enough.

Those two quotes just really hit me hard, and they're a total Mood.

The Priory of the Orange Tree is a truly epic story, in both actual length, and the scope of the world. One thing that initially put my off picking up this book, despite me having a gorgeous signed hardback and all of the hype flying around, was the length. But I'd definitely say to try and see this as a bind up of six shorter books in the same wider story arc. It definitely makes it much less daunting a prospect.

Basically, when it comes to The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon, believe the hype. It is an absolutely outstanding book, and one that I already want to read again.

Have you read The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon?


  1. What an excellent review! This isn't a book I would normally pick up but I do love seeing people love it.

  2. I've heard lots of good things about this book! Great review x

  3. I've seen so many reviews and good things about this book but like you, I was put off by the size of it. That said, your tip of thinking in six shorter stories makes perfect sense, so now might be the time I actually try it for myself, thank you! :)

  4. This is a book that has been recommended to me so many times but, like you, I found the sheer size of it a bit overwhelming. It is definitely one that I would like to get around to reading at some point though. Great review, thanks for sharing xx

  5. im 120~ pages in and i love it so much, :)

  6. I actually just started this book! I really wish I had the audio, like you did, because I have no idea how to pronounce anything lol. I am totally guessing, and I am guessing that I am wrong lol!


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