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The Cougar Star

The Student News Site of Clague Middle School

The Cougar Star

The Student News Site of Clague Middle School

The Cougar Star


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Traitor’s Game: a review

The Traitor’s Game by Jennifer A. Nielsen is a stunning read that will leave you breathless and hungry for more.
Chiara Christensen
The Traitor’s Game by Jennifer A. Nielsen is a stunning read that will leave you breathless and hungry for more.

“In a traitor’s game, there are no winners. Only those left standing at the end. Cheat or be cheated. Crush or be crushed. Play … or be killed. The next move is mine.” – “The Traitor’s Game”

“The Traitor’s Game” by Jennifer A. Nielsen is a thrilling book that is impossible to put down. It’s packed with practically everything a book can have: action, adventure, romance, well-built characters, a lot of plot twists, and much more. I believe that this book is the perfect read for all those bookworms out there who have been searching for a great story with all the right elements, and it’s also perfect for those who haven’t been searching for such a story.

Kestra Dallisor, daughter of Sir Henry Dallisor, who serves the tyrant king Lord Endrick, has been exiled to the Lava Fields. She has only Darrow, her handmaiden Celia, and Cook with her. Most would think this as a bad punishment, but to Kestra, living in Woodcourt, living as a Dallisor, had been the real punishment. The Lava Fields is the only place she’s ever really felt free – after all, in the Lava Fields, she can do whatever she likes whenever she likes without judging eyes carefully monitoring her every move. But everything has an end, and so does Kestra’s stay in the Lava Fields when she is suddenly – and suspiciously – summoned back to her childhood home, that of Woodcourt.

The summons only leads to her being attacked by a group called the Coracks, a rebellion against Lord Endrick’s rule. This opens her into a dangerous game in which she can hardly distinguish allies from traitors. In which she herself doesn’t know what side she’s on, nor does she know what the sides even are.

Through deadly battles, devastating betrayals, and undecidable decisions, Kestra slowly learns the truth about her family, her friends, her enemies, and most importantly of all, the truth about herself and who she really is: The Infidante. Destined to claim the Olden Blade and destroy Lord Endrick and his evil magic once and for all. Destined to kill… or be killed.

The Traitor’s Game can be too much at first if you aren’t used to these types of books, packed with action. There are a lot of intense battles in which every single person is fighting to kill, as well as even more violent scenes overall. Some of the things that happen in the book I find a bit ill-timed, though, but no book is ever perfect.

As an overall series, this trilogy is amazing and is probably one of the best I’ve come across so far. However, I must say that the ending of the third book did, to say the least, disappoint me. The ending, in my opinion, seemed a little bit rushed and didn’t seem like the proper ending for such an ambitious story. However, in general, it was outstandingly written. 

I would say that this book is good for ages 11 or 12 and above (especially for those who love action and adventure books) because of its contents which can be pretty violent (not just because of the deathly battles and somewhat gory deaths, but also due to the magic Lord Endrick uses, such as his ability to crush hearts) and a plot that some might say is heavy. You can find this book at the Clague library, or any other library or bookstore. Wherever you may get it from, I guarantee you, it will be completely worth the read.

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About the Contributors
Saanvi Kulkarni
Saanvi Kulkarni, Staff Writer
Saanvi is a 7th grader at Clague Middle School. This is her first year doing yearbook/newspaper. In her free time, she likes to read, write stories, do karate and play piano, as well as hanging out with her friends. Also, she spends way too much time wishing for a pet.
Chiara Christensen
Chiara Christensen, Staff Writer
Chiara Christensen is currently a 7th grader at Clague. This is her 2nd year doing Yearbook and Paw Prints. Chiara loves reading books (but hates cliffhangers), playing tennis, swimming, and playing flute (most of the time). She loves all animals (and is stuck between her friends, who insist that dogs are better), watching the Wolverines win, and spending time with friends.

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