Four kingdoms keep themselves busy fighting each other: everybody literally fights everybody and nomad tribes also joined the fun: local skirmishes only, but people die and armies get worn off. Only selected few people know that Big Bad Guy and his army are coming and that the only chance of stopping him would be the united forces of all the realms.
Again this book picks right where the last one left. There are not a lot of conquests, but more than enough scheming. It is interesting to see that the aforementioned Big Bad Guy at times comes up like a normal human being: he likes apples and apple pies and he draws people's portraits as a hobby. This is especially interesting because he is not strictly speaking human. This is in sharp contrast to some real people who fail to display any traces of humanity.
I have exactly the same problems with this book as with the previous one - in fact they can be considered a single book split in two. The character development is great and some of the characters become very interesting and acquire unexpected traits, but there is not much going on in terms of action. There is always anticipation of things to come, but they never quite do.
Still there were some highly unexpected happenings by the end of the book, including a death of a character which was supposed to survive to at least the middle of the last book, according to my expectations. I am very interested to see how things will end and the last book of the series promptly goes to my to-read shelf.
The final rating is 3.5 stars
This review is a copy/paste of my LeafMarks one: https://www.leafmarks.com/lm/#/users/10968/books/1055908/review