Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Book Review: Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

Book Description:
In a land where magic has been forgotten but peace has reigned for centuries, a deadly unrest is simmering. Three kingdoms grapple for power—brutally transforming their subjects' lives in the process. Amidst betrayals, bargains, and battles, four young people find their fates forever intertwined:

Cleo: A princess raised in luxury must embark on a rough and treacherous journey into enemy territory in search of a magic long thought extinct.

Jonas: Enraged at injustice, a rebel lashes out against the forces of oppression that have kept his country impoverished—and finds himself the leader of a people's revolution centuries in the making.

Lucia: A girl adopted at birth into a royal family discovers the truth about her past—and the supernatural legacy she is destined to wield.

Magnus: Bred for aggression and trained to conquer, a firstborn son begins to realize that the heart can be more lethal than the sword. . . .

The only outcome that's certain is that kingdoms will fall. Who will emerge triumphant when all they know has collapsed?

My Thoughts:
This took me a good 3/4 of the book to REALLY get into it and appreciate everything the author did in this book. This was well written, well thought out, well executed I just had a hard time following at times plus certain things bothered me...greatly...

Falling Kingdoms is basically a story about three countries, three neighboring kingdoms with nothing but deep-rooted hatred between them. On two sides are Auranos and Limeros, both prosperous but different in everything but in wealth, then between them sits Paelsia, a poor, hungry kingdom drained of everything by its neighbors from both sides. In all three kingdoms, resentment and prejudice run high and are passed through generations, but somehow they've been able to maintain peace for decades. That is until a young and horrible nobleman from Auranos kills a good young man from Paelsia. And in this situation the we find the excuse the king of Limeros needs as a chance to destroy the despised rival king of Auranos.

One thing that bugged me and I had a hard time keeping up with was the fact that Falling Kingdoms does not focus on a single hero’s perspective. It is told from several points of view (too many at times in my opinion but then it comes together nicely in the end) which offers insight into each of the three countries. It is a game of three kings, a "game of thrones" so-to-speak  It's fun and interesting to try and pick sides or switch when you feel like it because you know what's going on in each of the kingdoms. However what makes this fun, interesting and unique is  all three kingdoms and all the central characters exist in a gray area there was never a black or white character, all of them where guilty & innocent in some way and that was fascinating!

The blending of stories and characters was brilliant. It just can been a little hard to keep up and remember who is with who and which king goes to which kingdom (maybe it was the names that made this more difficult for me).

A few things bothered me. I HATED reading a brother be in love with his sister (the reader knowing they aren't related but the characters do not) I understand that this may have been the norm back then but I do not find it ok, I just find it...disturbing, and that turned me off...royally. Another thing that bothered me was the romance the blossomed too soon, too quick with Cleo and I wasn't disappointed when certain things happened with THAT situation.

Overall: if you are fan of political intrigue, and complex storylines then this is for you. It was very well done and the author did a phenomenal job bring in everything nicely, tied up lose ends and threading everything together beautifully.  

Sexual Content: moderate (talk of having a one-night-stand, kissing, and some innuendos of characters going to have sex)
Language: moderate (PG-PG-13 I think)
Violence: moderate (a murder, war violence)
Drugs/Alcohol: mild (PG a character constantly drinking or drunk)

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