I know that Adelina is supposed to be the villain of this story. The entire marketing campaign has been how this is from the villainess point of view instead of the usual heroine. I agree that’s unique but I’m having hard time seeing Adelina as a villain or “the villain” of this novel. If anything she is just one of many bad guys in the story. Teren is out right terrifying. His obsession and religious furor makes him so certain that his work camps and plans of eradicating all malfettos from Kennetra is the true villain of the story. I think we are supposed to see the Daggers led by Enzo and Raffaelle as the heroes but they are committing treason by allying themselves to Queen Maeve of Beldain. Maeve is also an elite with the power to bring back the dead. For this reason she obviously takes much better care of malfettos or survivors of the blood fever but she is also planning on taking over another sovereign nation. Queen Guiletta is not exactly a saint either but now that she has ascended to the thrown she is making in effort. She sees how Teren is treating the malfettos and orders they be treated better. She wants obedience, not revolution. She knows that the children of many influential people are malfettos and they would not like to see their children poorly treated. Unfortunately, Teren sees things differently and by the time she realizes how much power she has given him it’s too late. Could she have been a more effective leader if it wasn’t for Teren? Most likely. But back to Adelina. She was caste out from the Daggers for betraying them, killing Dante and making the mistake that lead to Enzo’s death. She and her sister Violetta seek out new allies to help her in her revenge against Teren and his inquisitors. Throughout the book, Adelina experience illusions of people she has killed that and they get worse as the story goes on. She also hears voices and becomes more and more paranoid. *Spoiler* We learn in the end that the elites powers are turning against them. They were given powers of the Gods but their human bodies can’t handle it. Adelina has the power of illusions. Creating images to make people think, see and feel things that are not there. For her it makes her see her dead father and hear voices and be paranoid. I couldn’t help but think this sounds like schizophrenia or another mental illness. Having your villain show signs of mental illness is a little problematic to me. I’m pretty sure that is not the author’s intent. As I said, the elites powers are turning against them. If Adelina had different powers her side effects would be different but her powers and her dark feelings are what makes her a threat. Also a little problematic is that Adelina is a victim of domestic abuse. Since she was a child she was beaten and abused by her father. She lived her life trying to gain the love of a man who hurt her. When she kills him and finds the Daggers she does what she can to make them like her and to fit in and they turn on her too. This is an emotionally scarred woman. I’m not saying that what she has done in the last two books are excusable but I also don’t think that labeling her as a villain is accurate either. If anything, I find myself rooting for her to succeed then any other character in the book.