Book Review: “Wings Of Fire: Winter Turning” by Tui T. Sutherland

Cover of "Wings Of Fire: Winter Turning" by Tui T. Sutherland.
Cover of “Wings Of Fire: Winter Turning” by Tui T. Sutherland.

I’m back with another book review, and this time I’m reviewing “Wings Of Fire: Winter Turning” by Tui T. Sutherland! It’s been a while since I picked up the last book in this series, so I’m glad to pick up this next book to read and review. Here’s a summary so we know what it’s about:

“Daring mission… or deadly mistake?

Winter has been a disappointment to his royal IceWing family his whole life. When his sister, Icicle, runs away from Jade Mountain Academy, fleeing terrible crimes and possibly planning to commit more, Winter knows that they both need a second chance to make things right — if only he can find her.

Winter’s new clawmates, Moon, Qibli, and Kinkajou, won’t let him make this dangerous journey alone. They don’t seem to understand that IceWings, the most superior of all dragon tribes, can fix their own problems. When their search leads the dragonets straight into Queen Scarlet’s vicious talons, Winter is grateful to have some help. But even the bravest dragons can’t follow him to the Ice Kingdom, where he’ll have to face the greatest threat of all: his own family.”

Content Warning:

This book contains abusive family dynamics, kidnapping, and mentions of self-harm, torture, and death. If you are uncomfortable with any of this content, please be careful when reading this book or skip it entirely.

Plot Development: 3 out of 5 stars

The main plot itself was fine overall. However, majority of it hinged on Winter learning to stop being so prejudiced and discriminatory against virtually all the other dragons. I wish that Winter’s development was better-executed, and I’ll expand on this in the character development section of the review. I did enjoy reading the aftermath of what’s going on with Scarlet now that her sisters are dead, as well as catching up with other past characters such as Glory.

Worldbuilding Development: 5 out of 5 stars

As tragic as it is, the knowledge of Winter’s family is a common behavior among the Ice Dragons, in general, did add to the main story as is. I also enjoyed reading how Winter and the other dragons working together challenged each other’s prejudices based on the type of dragon they were (since IceWings generally don’t like NightWings and vice versa, for example).

It was also fun (and terrifying) to read about the various magic spells that dragons can use. This book explored more of that magic this time around. One of them is pivotal to the main story (and I won’t say which one or else it’s a major spoiler). It makes sense, but it’s terrifying in execution when one considers the effects of it on the dragon it was used on.

Character Development: 3.5 out of 5 stars

I’ll be honest: I didn’t like the development that Winter had individually in this book. His initial prejudice against NightWings is understandable, given that’s what he was raised on. However, it got overly annoying and over the top to read throughout the book. It doesn’t change at all until the very last third of the book, and even then, it feels abrupt.  Meanwhile, Qibli and Kinjakou were much-needed rays of sunshine throughout the entire book. I actually felt that those two grew more than Winter did, individually. Hopefully, both of them get the chance to have a book through their own points of view in the series.

I also enjoyed seeing Glory again. She’s certainly grown into a sassy and well-commanding Queen of the RainWing dragons. I did mention this earlier, but it was also nice to see returning characters such as Riptide and Scarlet. I enjoyed reading how they fared since the events of the first five books.

Overall, I’m rating this book out 3.5 of 5 stars!

Though this book is the weakest in the series that I’ve read this far, it’s still overall enjoyable to read. I hope that the next book in the series will be better.

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