Review: The Gryphon’s Lair (Royal Guide to Monster Slaying #2)

Title: The Gryphon’s Lair (Royal Guide to Monster Slaying #2)
Author: Kelley Armstrong
Genre: Middle Grade, Fantasy
Publisher: Puffin Books
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: June 2, 2020
Rating: ★★★★


Goodreads Synopsis:

Rowan is now the Royal Monster Hunter, and her twin brother, Rhydd, is destined to be king. But her mother’s cousin Heward is still determined that his children be the ones to inherit the titles, and will stop at nothing to show that Rowan and Rhydd are too immature to properly lead. After the gryphon that Rowan captured in Book One gives birth but then dies, Rowan is left with a baby gryphon she knows she cannot keep. And it grows faster than anyone can imagine . . .

In order to save face after an accident involving the troublesome gryphon, Rowan, with the help of her friends Dain and Alianor, along with an entourage of monstrous companions, must make a journey to the mountains to release the gryphon back into the wild. What starts off as a simple enough task soon becomes a dangerous quest, as the group encounters numerous rare and deadly monsters along the way, including wyverns and ceffyl-dwrs. Nothing is easy when you’re a “monster magnet” like Rowan. 

Can she prove herself worthy of the title of Royal Monster Hunter? Find out in this exciting second book in the Royal Guide to Monster Slaying duology! 


Rowan is training to be the royal monster hunter in her kingdom. She caught a gryphon in the previous book, and it was allowed to live because it was pregnant. Now the gryphon is having her baby, but the mother dies due to complications. The baby gryphon grows quickly and thinks that Rowan is her mother. When the gryphon goes to extreme lengths to protect Rowan, the kingdom decides that the gryphon has to be killed. Rowan convinces them to let her move the gryphon somewhere else. On Rowan’s new adventure through the country, she meets even more creatures than last time.

I really enjoyed this series. I just found out that this is the final book in this series. I would have liked to see more of Rowan as she gets older. She had to face some more mature issues in this book, such as potential suitors for her and her brother. I love how Rowan is such a strong female character. She heads right into danger to do the right thing, rather than what everyone thinks she should do. She is confident and independent.

I felt like some of the fight scenes were too long. They lasted for a couple of chapters, sometimes, and they became repetitive. One thing that could have made the fights more entertaining is if there were illustrations to go along with them. There are some illustrations of the monsters at the end of the book, but I think the story could have been enhanced with illustrations throughout the book.

This is a great middle grade book.

Thank you Penguin Random House Canada for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Dragon Pearl by Yoon Ha Lee

Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi

Other books in the series:

Have you read The Gryphon’s Lair? What did you think of it?

Author: jilljemmett

Jill lives in Toronto, Canada. She has studied English, Creative Writing, and Publishing. Jill is the creator and content producer of Jill’s Book Blog, where she has published a blog post every day for the last four years, including 5-7 book reviews a week. She can usually be found with her nose in a book.

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