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Ruthless Vows by Rebecca Ross
Young adult

Ruthless Vows

by Rebecca Ross

Excellent choice

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Quick take

In this epic follow-up to Divine Rivals, two rival journalists turned lovers must be reunited to stop the march of war.

Good to know

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Romance


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_400

    400+ pages

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_MultipleNarrators

    Multiple viewpoints

  • Illustrated icon, Icons_2ndSeries

    Second in series


Two weeks have passed since Iris Winnow returned home bruised and heartbroken from the front, but the war is far from over. Roman is missing, and the city of Oath continues to dwell in a state of disbelief and ignorance. When Iris and Attie are given another chance to report on Dacre’s movements, they both take the opportunity and head westward once more despite the danger, knowing it’s only a matter of time before the conflict reaches a city that’s unprepared and fracturing beneath the chancellor’s reign.

Since waking below in Dacre’s realm, Roman cannot remember his past. But given the reassurance that his memories will return in time, Roman begins to write articles for Dacre, uncertain of his place in the greater scheme of the war. When a strange letter arrives by wardrobe door, Roman is first suspicious, then intrigued. As he strikes up a correspondence with his mysterious pen pal, Roman will soon have to make a decision: to stand with Dacre or betray the god who healed him. And as the days grow darker, inevitably drawing Roman and Iris closer together…the two of them will risk their very hearts and futures to change the tides of the war.

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Free sample

Get an early look from the first pages of Ruthless Vows.
Ruthless Vows



There was never any doubt in her mind, even after all these dust-streaked mortal years, that Dacre would one day come for her. Enva knew her music would only hold him in his grave for so long. It didn’t matter how much she had sacrificed to sing it; the twisted spell she had sung over him would eventually fade in power.

She had strummed the lullaby for the entire turning of a year, from spring to summer, when gray storms turned the world green and soft. And then from summer to autumn, when the trees turned umber and gold, and rime cast a cloak over the dying grass. From autumn to winter, when mountains grew fangs of ice and the air was brittle, and then to spring once again.

It was enough to hold her former lover beneath the loam for centuries by mortal reckoning, and she had reassured the human king at the time. As for the other three divines . . . Alva, Mir, and Luz . . . Enva had never been worried about their waking.

But all good things eventually came to an end. And all songs had a final verse.

Dacre would wake, and she would be waiting for him.

Enva curled her long fingers into a fist at her side, feeling the ache in her swollen knuckles. She had known her spell would end, but what she hadn’t anticipated was the cost of swallowing so much power.

Momentarily lost to the past, Enva stood in a shadow on Broad Street, watching people hurry along their way, oblivious to her presence. But she was often overlooked, as was her preference. She could melt into a crowd of mortals like she had been born among them, with flesh doomed to bleed and decay, with a spirit that was like a candle flame, flickering and incandescent. Burning brilliant in the darkness.

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Why I love it

If you’re anything like me, the idea of having to wait for a sequel is excruciating. The time between finishing the first book and getting your hands on the second always feels like an eternity. After finishing Divine Rivals, I found myself counting down the days, hours, and minutes until I could read Ruthless Vows, and I am happy to say it was totally worth the wait.

Iris Winnow has returned home tired and a little heartbroken, knowing that Roman has gone missing. So, when she gets an opportunity to return to the frontlines, she immediately accepts the assignment. Reporting on Dacre’s army allows her to warn the unprepared city of Oath that war is not as far off as it seems. Meanwhile, Roman is recovering from extensive injuries in Dacre’s realm while he tries to piece together who he was before he was injured. After initially feeling indebted to Dacre for healing him, Roman begins to question his loyalties after receiving a mysterious letter from an anonymous pen pal. As Iris and Roman each face new challenges, they must risk everything they’ve built and hold dear if they have any hope of ending the war.

If you asked me what my favorite part of this story was, it would probably change every time I answered. It does so many things from world building to introducing scintillating magic and characters so well. Ruthless Vows is a stunning conclusion to one of my favorite series and should not be missed!

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Member ratings (3,790)

  • Megan C.

    Davidson, NC

    As someone fairly new to fantasy, I can say that I absolutely devoured this book and this series! I wasn’t overwhelmed by the world building as I have in fantasy series past, and would recommend this!

  • Annie R.

    Chicago, IL

    Rebecca Ross remains the queen of the heartbreaking, gut-wrenching, life-affirming duo series. I ate this book in two bites, and it wasn’t fast enough. I will miss Iris and Kitt now that it’s ended

  • Sarah M.

    Bonney Lake , WA

    This was a beautiful follow up to Divine Rivals. I loved how the storyline flipped in the beginning with Iris being the one to know what was going on with the typewriters and Roman being in the dark.

  • Jennifer A.

    Hemet, CA

    We get closure! "Despite our mundane lives, perhaps we make our own magic with words." Are you kidding me?! Swoon!!! My new Roman Empire!! My emotions still are not fully recovered. Still in my mind!

  • Cameron W.

    Wilmington, NC

    Oh my word! This book brought out all the emotions! Iris and Roman, what a pair! I thoroughly enjoyed their story. I really liked Attie! Such a fierce woman fought with Iris to win the battle. I could

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