Author: Claire Legrand
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Page Count: 512
Release Date: May 22, 2018
When assassins ambush her best friend, Rielle Dardenne risks everything to save him, exposing herself as one of a pair of prophesied queens: a queen of light, and a queen of blood. To prove she is the Sun Queen, Rielle must endure seven elemental magic trials. If she fails, she will be executed…unless the trials kill her first.
One thousand years later, the legend of Queen Rielle is a fairy tale to Eliana Ferracora. A bounty hunter for the Undying Empire, Eliana believes herself untouchable—until her mother vanishes. To find her, Eliana joins a rebel captain and discovers that the evil at the empire’s heart is more terrible than she ever imagined.
As Rielle and Eliana fight in a cosmic war that spans millennia, their stories intersect, and the shocking connections between them ultimately determine the fate of their world—and of each other.
I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This in no way effects my overall rating of this book.
It’s been a while since I read a high fantasy book (as in not taking place in the real world), so going into this review, take that into consideration because this could have had a large effect on my thoughts. Also, this book came out yesterday, so guess who is only a day late with this review hehe! i’m way too proud of this
Firstly, I’d like to say that I was disappointed in the bi rep that this book was supposed to have. I say supposed to because it felt like it wasn’t really there? If I hadn’t been looking for it, I wouldn’t have even realized it was there, which isn’t really something that should be considered as rep.
With that being said, I did appreciate the gay couple that was incorporated into the book like it was something normal because IT SHOULD BE! I also appreciated the possible characters of color – these POC are just speculation on my part so I won’t be yelling it from the rooftops and won’t ask y’all to praise the author for it, but in my mind it was there. I like seeing how diverse the fantasy genre is getting, but it can always be improved on.
This book bored me throughout. I also didn’t care for either of the main female characters like I feel I should have. They had all of the elements to kick-butt heroines but… they didn’t wow me or make me root for them.
I also didn’t realize that the perspectives take place A THOUSAND YEARS apart until I was nearly halfway through the book?? If I hadn’t read reviews from other bloggers, I fear I wouldn’t have figured this out until the end.
Also, the “big reveal” at the end seemed a bit obvious due to the prologue?? I knew – or, well – suspected the big reveal at the end of the book since the first chapter after I read the prologue (which I was very confused after reading, might I add).
I was confused for the first… 20% of the book? And then from thereon out I kept jumping between “ah, this is kinda cool” and “uGH WHEN WILL IT BE OVER??” That kinda sums up my feelings for this book.
The romance. Okay, so I did kind of ship some characters, but those characters either ended up not getting together or one of them was evil, so my ships got sunk before they were even in the water. This got on my nerves a bit, but maybe something will happen in book two?? You never know.
Eliana and Rielle weren’t as awesome as I thought they’d be. Eliana is a bounty hunter for the Empire. She’s stone cold one second but then feels remorse for her kills the next second. The author was probably trying to make her a morally gray character, but I don’t think it was quite executed to perfection. Rielle, however, I sympathized with at first and actually really liked her character but she began to get on my nerves a bit towards the middle.
I also didn’t much care for their love interests, if you can even call them that. They were so bland and just plain boring to read about. I didn’t feel a spark between Rielle and Eliana and their respective love interests that they ended up with. I think the love interests just weren’t anything special. They reminded me of all of the other YA love interests *yawn*.
I loved Eliana’s brother and Navi, but the other characters didn’t interest me much. I hope that they get more spotlight (and maybe even their own perspectives??) in the sequel.
The magic was cool (though nothing unique) and I thought it was cool how the alternating perspectives were set decades apart. It made the story a bit confusing, but it also helped shape the world, if utilized correctly (which it wasn’t, oops!). It did bring the book setting more depth which I appreciated.
I hope that in the sequel, the author will be able to make the characters more likable (or more interesting at the least), and expand on the world. I love fantasy worlds so seeing more world development would be nice.
Before I go, I would also like to mention the amount of sexual content in this book. It’s not frequent, but it’s basically smut when it does appear. At one point I had to skip roughly three pages because it was making me uncomfortable to read. Thankfully some other reviews I read before I picked up this book mentioned this so I was somewhat prepared but it was quite extensive for a book classified under Young Adult.
My Rating: 3 Stars
Overall this was a solid YA fantasy. I had my problems with the characters, page count, and some other small things but I can see myself picking up the sequel once it comes out. I recommend it to fantasy lovers because it will be a great addition to your fantasy library!
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If you could have the power to control what element what would it be? Have you read this book? Do you plan on reading it? Let me know!