The prison healer Series best I’ve read so far! 

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The Prison healer series was packed with adventures and friendships forming.

Book name: The Prison Healer

Author: Lynette Noni

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Genre: Fantasy Fiction

Pages: 403

The Prison Healer synopsis:

Seventeen-year-old Kiva Meridan has spent the last ten years fighting for survival in the notorious death prison, Zalindov, working as the prison healer.

When the Rebel Queen is captured, Kiva is charged with keeping the terminally ill woman alive long enough for her to undergo the Trial by Ordeal: a series of elemental challenges against the torments of air, fire, water, and earth, assigned to only the most dangerous of criminals.

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The Prison healer Characters:

Kiva meridian– the main character and the prison healer. She also has the job of carving up the new inmates with a Z. The prisoners don’t like her because The warden has her spy on them and report back any information about the rebels. 

Jaren– a new inmate who Kiva starts to fall for. He has blue golden eyes. 

Naari– Amber eyes. She’s a security guard who Kiva suspects because she isn’t like the rest. But the more they spend time together, she learns Naari is someone she could trust.

Tipp–  eleven year old boy who came to the prison at the age of 8. His mom was being arrested and because he wouldn’t let go of her, They arrested him too. Kiva has been taking care of him in the prison since his mom passed. 

Cresta– red hair. The leader of the rebels in prison. She’s super annoying. Bullies Kiva.

Warden rooke– The warden of the prison. He claims he cares about Kiva and keeps her safe because her father saved his life. 

Tilda Corentine– Middle aged, Dark hair tan skin, She’s the rebel queen. 

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The Prison healer Review: 

This book started off with a prologue of the main character Kiva as a child with her younger brother and father. Then it fast forwards to the present time of her being in a prison cell. 

I thought the pacing was very slow paced. And usually that throws me off with reading because I’m sitting there thinking “get to the point!”

But the slow pacing really worked with this book. And I think It has a lot to do with how the characters were written.

The setting takes place in a prison throughout the whole book.

I was curious to know how Kiva ended up there at a young age and where her parents were. But that explanation builds up to a flashback midway in the book. 

As the Prison healer, Kiva is tasked with exactly what it sounds like. If the prisoners are sick then they come to her. 

She took over when her father died. 

If there’s a new prisoner, They also come to her because they have to be carved with a Z that stands for Zalindov (the prison). This marks them as a prisoner. Not that that they will ever see outside of those walls.  

Kiva’s father 

Kiva’s father was arrested simply because he was accused of speaking to a rebel. 

He was a healer who often many people come to when they need help, He wasn’t someone who would conspire against the crown. But they arrested him anyway and because Kiva wouldn’t let go of her father, she was arrested too. 

Her father taught her so many things and she vowed to walk in his footsteps. 

What I enjoyed about the prison healer

There was no need for an extravagant worldbuilding or a crazy plotline because the characters were enough to get you attached. 

We get introduced to Tipp who is this eleven year old kid. 

He arrived with his mom in prison but she later died and Kiva took the kid under her wing. She was the prison healer after her father died. So she took Tipp in as an assistant. But he was much more than that to her. 

Tipp was like a little brother. The night his mom died, Kiva held him until he cried himself to sleep. 

He was in prison simply because he didn’t let go of his mom when she was being arrested. 

I thought that was weird because you’re telling me a bunch of grown men can’t pry a child away from his mom? 

It’s wrong, yes but that would’ve been better than just sending an innocent eight year old to prison. 

Are there no laws in place to determine if a person is guilty or not? A court?

They have the trial of ordeals where if a person completes and lives through all of them then that proves their innocence. But no one has ever been able to survive all four trials. 

The letters

Omg the emotional rollercoaster I went through with those letters. I felt like I was trapped with Kiva. 

Learning why Kiva was sent to prison and what she went through, I didn’t understand why her family wasn’t getting her out. 

I understand they made this prison out to be super inescapable but for 10 years? Nothing? 

Not to mention that Warden Rooke told Kiva that Tipp didn’t have anyone to claim him for him to be released. 

So if Kiva was also once that innocent child taken to prison shouldn’t her family have come then?

There was no indication that the whole family was suspected of teaming up with rebels, only their father so why did they go into hiding. 

And when learning that their father died, They should’ve had more incentive to come get Kiva. 

Jaren and Naari

Jaren was a new prisoner that Kiva was tasked to show around. Usually that wasn’t her job but she had an order to do it so she did. I immediately when he is introduced you can tell that he will be the love interest. 

Because she makes comments on how beautiful his eyes are and how she lingers on his skin as she is cleaning his bruises. 

The comments are in her head of course, Not aloud. Because she knows she has to stay away from him. 

Her goal is to stay alive enough for her family to come and get her. 

Narri is the new prison guard who Kiva is cautious of because she’s not like the other guards who abuse their power. Later Kiva starts feeling comfortable around Naari that she trusts her.

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The powerful bloodlines

The story of the rebel queen is that she is the ancestor of Torvin Corentine, a healer with special powers to manipulate the human body.  He was married to Sarvana Valentines. A woman with the power to wield all four elements. Basically like the avatar. 

Together they were the 2 most powerful bloodlines of all time. 

But Sarvana grew hungry with power and she resented her husband for being so generous and kind to their people. Using his healing power for good.

 She turned on Torvin and attacked him but told their people that it was the other way around. She told them he wanted to kill her. 

The rebels were a group of people who never believed Sarvanas lies and rebelled against her. 

The rebel queen

When she arrives at the prison, Kiva gets a coded note saying “Don’t let her die, We’re coming” 

and I thought wow, so her family is coming only because the rebel queen is there. Not because of their own family member who has been there for 10 years. 

There’s no mention of how the rebel queen was captured and what was causing her illness.  

And when everything was revealed in the end, I couldn’t understand why Kiva didn’t make the exception to heal her. Like she did Tipp. 

The Prison healer ending

Towards the end of the book, The prisoners have been getting sick. An unknown illness. Later Kiva found out that someone, Warden rooke, was giving out poison. It was disguised as an immunity booster for the winter. But in reality he was depopulating the number of prisoners to get ready for the new batch coming in spring. 

Once the prisoners found out, they rioted and it was a bloodbath. 

We learn that Jaren is actually a prince that was undercover the whole time to get close to the rebel queen to ask her questions. Because his line comes from Sarana Valentines. 

Naari was also undercover, She was actually Jaren’s guard the whole time. 

He has the power to wield all four elements just like his ancestor. 

His family doesn’t like the rebel queen because she has a rightful claim to the throne. 

When finding this out, Kiva was upset. I never understood why writers make their characters upset that someone didn’t tell them a secret. Especially when they are hiding their own. 

Kiva never once told Jaren the truth about where she comes from and what she can do. So I thought it was unfair for her to be upset about him not mentioning that he’s a prince. 

They didn’t know each other that well so I’m not sure why she expected him to be truthful about his identity. 

Conclusion

I really enjoyed the ending that was revealed. When Kiva was writing that note to her family saying “Mother is dead” 

I did not see that coming at all. 

That’s one thing I will say about the writer, she knows how to make the story interesting.

 Because there were subtle things throughout the story, like little things that I sort of overlooked and then in the end I was only just piecing it together.

 I really love how the writer did that. 

There is romance in this book with Jaren and Kiva. I liked how it didn’t feel rushed. We see Jaren caring for Kiva while helping her through the trials without her knowing. 

Kiva tried not to like him because she has seen people come and go in Zalindov. She didn’t want to get attached. 

The Prison Healer Quotes:

“Mother is dead. I’m on my way to Vallenia. It’s time to regain our kingdom”

“She smiled shyly back, Offering no indication as to who he was leading to his city…who he was welcoming into his home” 

“The rebel queen may have perished at Zalindov, but her daughter was alive and well and free of zalindov after ten years”

I felt like Kiva should have told Jaren the truth. She obviously cares for him as he does her. So I don’t understand why she would want to break that by keeping that from him.

The Gilded Cage Book 2

Author : Lynnete Noni

Genre: Fantasy Fiction

Pages: 429

This is the Second book in the Prison Healer series.

The Gilded Cage Synopsis:

Kiva trades one cage for another when she leaves behind a deadly prison for a deceptive palace.

Kiva Meridan is a survivor.

She survived not only Zalindov prison, but also the deadly Trial by Ordeal. Now Kiva’s purpose goes beyond survival to vengeance. For the past ten years, her only goal was to reunite with her family and destroy the people responsible for ruining their lives. But now that she has escaped Zalindov, her mission has become more complicated than ever.

The Gilded Cage Characters:

Kiva- 17. Main character 

Tipp- 11 year old boy

Jaren- Also known as Prince deverek.

Naari- Jarens guard 

Queen Ariana- She is Jarens mom

Princess Mirryn- She is Jaren’s sister

Prince Caldon- He is Jarens cousin

Zuleeka- Kiva’s older sister

Torrel- Kiva’s older brother by two years 

Rhessinda Lorin- Her parents died and Torrell took her in as his own. They became best friends. Because of that she was sent undercover to protect Kiva without Kiva knowing. 

The Gilded Cage review:

This book was super long, Each paragraph felt like 2 extra pages. That’s how long it felt. The only way I can think of describing it is like being in a long car ride. Sometimes you will see nothing but trees and other times you will see something cool.

The Gilded Cage picks up 6 weeks from the first one. After they had all escaped the prison. 

All meaning Kiva, Tipp, Jaren and Naari.

We jump into Kiva at a healing academy, Listening in on a class. 

So some time has passed well enough for them to get adjusted. 

Jaren’s family was accepting of her and Tipp, inviting them to live with her. 

So it annoyed me when Kiva was constantly going behind Jaren’s back to tell her siblings about anything that could help their rebel cause. 

The whole time she makes it seem like she’s conflicted but It’s not that complicated. 

I tried to put myself in her shoes. The last time she has seen her older siblings was when she was seven years old. And now that they were in contact I can understand her feeling like she owes them information. 

Also for context- Kira meridian and her family are really “Corentines”

They are descendents from Torvin Corentine. And their goal is to take back the throne. 

Her older siblings are taking charge with the rebels now that the rebel queen, Their mother is dead. 

Kiva also has healing magic power that she has been suppressing for the last ten years because when they were in the prison her dad told her not to use it, not even on him. 

But the first time she used it was at the end of book 1 when she saved Tipp. 

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Zuleeka 

From the moment she appeared I  didn’t like her at all. 

Because she seemed cold and distant. There were so many signs to show that she was a dishonest person but Kiva ignored them. 

I can understand why, that’s her family. But I feel like kiva should have been more cautious. 

Later in the book we learn that Zuleeka has dark magic that her mother has been teaching her. Her grandmother says she’s evil. 

And she is. She was super cold to kiva making it seem like she was the reason their mother died. She even blamed her for it. 

Torrel

Torrel on the other hand didn’t ask for any of this. This wasn’t the life he would have chosen for himself- leading the rebel for a cause he wasn’t even sure he believed in. 

So I felt really bad that he felt like he had to lead according to their family history. That they had to reclaim their throne back from the valentines family. 

He started questioning everything even more when he learned that Zuleeka knew they could have rescued Kiva from Zalindov many times in the past. 

Prince Caldon

Prince Caldon is Jaren’s cousin. 

He has been training Kiva to learn how to fight because with so many attackers in the city he thought it would be best if she learned how to defend herself. 

He also let her know that he knows all about her family’s true identities. 

That she isn’t Kiva meridian but Kiva Corentine. 

They make his character out to be someone who would protect his family under any circumstances but suddenly he’s keeping Kiva’s secret?

Knowing that her siblings are literally out for blood. Well Zuleeka is at least. 

They also show that he cares for Kiva so I guess that may be it. But still I thought It was weird that he decided to keep that secret to himself. 

He also says he knows Her brother Torrell’s heart isn’t in leading the rebels. 

The Gilded Cage Ending

I really wanted Kiva to focus more on controlling and practicing her magic instead of worrying about “spying” for Zuleeka. 

Also when Kiva went to their grandmother to try to learn how to suppress her magic, her grandmother said that she should learn to control it instead. 

Because suppressing it was exactly why her mother Tilda went dark. Using her powers to destroy instead of for good. That’s why she was sick. The magic was eating her from the inside. 

Even upon hearing this Kiva attempted to make the potion herself. And when It didn’t work I was glad. 

I felt so bad for Jaren in the end when Zuleeka used the dagger on him. He trusted Kiva with everything and she couldn’t even bother to tell him the truth about her. 

That upset me. 

Because now his magic is gone but I really hope that in the third book we get his magic back. 

Kiva managed to save his life with her magic but Caldon told her to run because he knew she would be arrested so that’s exactly what she did. 

Other details that occurred

Also with the Torvin story we find out that he was the villain after all. 

He used his magic for evil against their people. Sarana had no choice but to stab him with the dagger the gods provided, taking his magic away. 

So after learning the truth Kiva had more reason to come clean to Jaren before everything had happened. 

Princess Mirryn was working with Zuleeka the whole time because she was apparently jealous of Jarren’s ability to wield all 4 elements. She was the first born so it should’ve been her groomed to take the throne but because he had more power he was set to do that. 

Zulleka and Mirryn sent Kiva back to Zalindov as the book ends.  

I’m curious to see how this plays out. Will Kiva use her magic to get out despite her grandmother’s warning that “one mistake is all it will take, one poor choice” 

And I wonder if that will be used to escape the prison or to kill her own sister. 

The Blood Traitor Book 3

Author: Lynette Noni

Genre: Fantasy Fiction

Pages: 439 

The Blood Traitor is the third and final book in the Prison Healer series.

The Blood Traitor Synopsis:

She’d failed them. All of them. And now she was paying the price.

Kiva thought she knew what she wanted—revenge. But feelings change, people change… everything has changed.

After what happened at the palace, Kiva is desperate to know if her friends and family are safe, and whether those she wronged can ever forgive her. But with the kingdoms closer to the brink of war than they’ve ever been, and Kiva far away from the conflict, more is at stake than her own broken heart. 

The blood Traitor Characters:

These are the new characters we are introduced to

Ashlyn– Cal’s sister 

Cresta– She was a prisoner from the first book that wasn’t really an important character. She would bully Kiva alot and she was a rebel group recruit leader or something like that. 

But now she’s joined the gang and has become one of my favorite characters. Also she’s a redhead who has serpent tattoos. 

Navok– A prince who made a deal with Tilda to get Kiva out of prison in exchange for marrying Kiva. He wanted to use Kiva’s power to make an army of individuals with Elemental magic. 

Galdric- He was someone who helped Tilda join the rebels.

The blood traitor Review:

 There is a Trigger warning at the beginning of this book that wasn’t there in the first two. 

The trigger warning  talks about addiction. 

Following the ending of book 2, Kiva is thrown right back into Zalindov. The same prison she escaped from in Book 1. 

She was sent there by her sister Zuleeka. 

Zuleeka drugged Kiva with angel dust which some people get easily addicted to. It helps knock someone out and make them complacent in a way. 

When she’s there she meets Cresta. And I was really surprised with the character development. Because Cresta went from someone who used to bully her to someone who was now helping her get through the withdrawals of the angel dust. 

I enjoyed how everything was coming back full circle. 

Kiva was able to leave the prison because Navok sent for her. But when she arrived at his kingdom and learned that she was meant to be his bride. She knew she had to escape. Luckily for her, Ashlynn the princess- Caldons sister was there undercover for something else entirely. 

They managed to escape. 

Kiva was able to see Jaren after that night Zuleeka took his magic away. He felt so betrayed and honestly I didn’t blame him for not wanting to speak to Kiva. He didn’t even want to look at her. 

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The hands of gods

Everyone’s main goal now was to get the rings also known as the Hands of the gods. These rings were able to give someone elemental magic. 

By using Kiva’s healing magic powering it. 

So she thought maybe there was a chance Jaren could get his magic back and he would forgive her. 

The timeline so far is Book 3 picks up 6 months from the first book. And 10 weeks from the second book. 

The group now consisted of Narri, Jaren, Prince Cal, Princess Ashlyn, Torrel, Cresta, Galdric, Tripp and Kiva. 

Half of the group felt betrayed by Kiva so there was a lot of awkward tension.

Their journey was to get the rings from the kingdoms that Sarana hid them in. 

Thoughts

I have to say, I think this is the first series in a long while that I felt super invested. 

There’s other amazing stories out there but I felt like I was on the journey right there with the characters, rather than just reading about it. 

The writing draws you in so much that it makes you feel like you are a part of the group. 

Lynette Noni is really amazing when it comes to twists that you wouldn’t expect. Usually I always sus people out when I’m reading.

 I would write their name down with a note like “watch out for this character” or “sus” 

But with the prison healer series I couldn’t even put it down because I felt like if I did, the story would go on without me. 

Character driven

The world building felt like a side part. 

It was more character driven and character focused with their relationships being at the forefront. Not so much romantically but platonically as well. 

Cal and Kiva’s relationship was similar to a siblings relationship. 

The same with Kiva and Tripp. She treated him like a younger brother and You could literally feel the emotions when he hugs her for the first time since finding out she lied. The love shared between them was amazing. 

At times I thought Tipp was like six years old but I had to remind myself that he was Eleven. It was the way he spoke because whenever he speaks he has a stutter. Which told my brain he was younger than he was. 

The romance with Kiva and Jaren didn’t feel forced or rushed which I thought was beautiful. 

Zuleeka met her fate in the end which I didn’t feel bad for. She lost her magic due to being Stabbed by Kiva with the eye of the gods dagger. Unfortunately that was after Zuleeka stabbed Kiva. 

Which resulted in Kiva also losing her healing magic. 

Zuleeka was sent to Zalindov and so was Warden Rooke for his crimes on the prisoners there. 

Would I recommend?

Everything felt very cohesive throughout the prison healer series. Nothing stood out as a surprise which usually happens in series. Once we are introduced to the characters, We start to learn more about them as we read on. This is truly one of the best YA series I have read. It isn’t too cringy and it has a healthy amount of world building, plot driven and character focused that I have seen lately. 

Throughout the book I kept thinking it was similar to the dance of thieves series. 

I would recommend that if you’re a fan of dance of thieves you will most likely love the prison healer series and vice versa. 

Common questions spoiler

Is the rebel queen Kiva’s mother?

Yes, Tilda Corentine is her mother

What is kivas power?

Kiva can heal other people using magic. But her father told her to never use it because it can get her in trouble. So she never did. Until saving Tipp. 

What happened to Kiva’s father?

He died while they were both in prison. He was sick from something that Kiva didn’t know at the time. But later she found out that it was because of the warden giving out “Immunity boosters”

Is the Prison Healer series a trilogy?

Yes it is. 

What is the order of the prison healer series?

The prison healer

The gilded Cage

The Blood Traitor

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