Book Review: Attachments

Attachments
By Rainbow Rowell

My Edition:
Paperback, 357 pages
2012, Orion Books
ISBN: 9781409120537

It’s 1999 and Lincoln has started a new job at a newspaper who has finally given their staff computers complete with the internet and email. Lincoln’s job is to monitor flagged emails and issue warnings to associates who are breaking the rules (ie: no vulgar jokes, no personal conversations, business only!), but he gets sucked into the life of two women, Beth and Jennifer, as they send almost daily emails full of their thoughts and feelings. Rather than issue them warnings, Lincoln becomes wrapped up in their correspondence and feels as though he’s a part of their lives.

First off, this is part of my genre switch-up challenge. I asked my friend Chelsea for a romance and this is what she suggested. I decided to read it in February because who doesn’t love romance in February!? Granted, the premise of the book seems a little creepy and my blurb probably didn’t help, but Chelsea assured me this would be a cute, contemporary (wait, is 1999 still contemporary?) read and she wasn’t wrong!

I was intrigued by the plot right away – how could I like a character who reads other people’s emails, even if it’s part of his job? Yet Lincoln is almost instantly sweet and charming and it’s clear he hates what he does, despite enjoying reading Beth and Jennifer’s emails. It was also strangely nostalgic to think about a time when computers and the internet were new to a workplace, as I still remember when my family first bought a computer and my limited access to the internet (oh how it’s changed!) I also remember the Y2K scare, which is touched upon in this book, and how everyone went crazy thinking our computers would crash as their internal calendars reverted back in time.

These three characters sent me on a rather unexpected emotional rollercoaster. I was more invested than I imagined I could be and up until the last few pages I couldn’t see how the book could resolve in a way I’d find satisfying. Certainly not the experience I expected from a contemporary romance.

I’ve owned Elinor and Park for quite some time, primarily because I scored a lovely edition at a book sale for $0.50 and had no real plan to read it. The majority of Rainbow’s work doesn’t sound appealing to me, but I’m glad I gave her a chance. I’m not sure when I’ll get to E&P, but I certainly won’t ignore it on purpose now.

If you’re looking for something quick and cute, and a little nostalgic if you remember a time before computers were friggen’ everywhere, then I highly recommend this.

You can visit Rainbow’s website here.

Book Review: Emma

Emma
By Alexander McCall Smith

My Edition:
Paperback, 361 pages
2014, Anchor Books
ISBN: 9780804172417

Emma Woodhouse has grown up on her father’s large estate, complete with a governess. She’s just finished school and decided to start her own interior design business, but finds herself more interested in the doings of her friends and neighbors. She starts with her governess, Ms. Taylor and after taking credit for successfully fixing her up with family-friend Mr. Weston, Emma decides matchmaking is her new business. She begins sticking her nose into everyone’s business and soon learns that they don’t view her as helpful, but rather meddling and snobby.

I’m now all caught up on the books in this modern Austen project and I’m satisfied with how they’ve all turned out. Despite each novel having its own author and varied voices, I still think they have all captured the spirit of Jane Austen’s novels and feel like a series that belongs together.

Smith’s Emma stands out as more of a spoiled, meddling, brat than the original (though I didn’t dislike her and was naturally excited to see her character growth) and I think that’s because our modern language and times allow her character to be depicted more bluntly. As a result, I think her change of heart and her efforts at self-improvement stand out more as well.

Mr. Woodhouse is a charming hypochondriac and his constant worries about the air quality of London (where Emma’s sister resides with her husband and growing brood) and the evils of microbes had me chuckling. George Knightley was less developed than I would have expected however; he doesn’t play a large part in Emma’s life until the latter part of the novel and I had been hoping for a bit more of a build-up in regards to their relationship.

The ending wrapped up a little too quickly for my liking, but overall this was a cute, contemporary take on the classic. As with the others, I recommend it if you enjoy Jane’s work – really, if you haven’t read any of her work, these modern adaptations might be right up your alley, to give you a feel for her stories without the potential intimidation of an older writing style.

You can check out Smith’s website or Tweet him or visit his Facebook page.

Book Review: Sense & Sensibility

Sense & Sensibility
By Joanna Trollope

My Edition:
Hardcover, 362 page
2013, Harper Collins
ISBN: 9780062200464

Recently forced to vacate their long-time home after the death of Mr. Dashwood, the four Dashwood women must rely on the goodwill of a cousin and settle into country life with more limited means than they’re accustomed to. Elinor, eldest of her three sisters, struggles to keep her over-emotional family together while also managing the bills and working to support their income. Drama ensues as new friends and potential lovers enter their lives and the family tries to find their way in the world.

This is the third book of the modern retelling “series” that I’ve read and I enjoyed it just as thoroughly as I enjoyed Northanger Abbey and Eligible. Trollope successfully brought the Dashwood family and all their friends and enemies into the 21st century and crafted a mostly believable version of a beloved classic.

In this version, there is still a trouble with inheritance that causes the Dashwood’s to have to leave their family estate because after the death of Henry Dashwood, the estate falls to his son from his first marriage, John. This is due in part because Ms. Dashwood never actually married Mr. Dashwood and partly because of some old inheritance traditions and I found this to be a believable modern take on the issue.

Sense & Sensibility lacks the sometimes drastic character changes employed by Eligible, but I still found all the characters enjoyable. Marianna is wonderfully annoying – she is a complete brat, totally over dramatic, and I mostly wanted to slap her. But she does exhibit character growth and her severe asthma condition fleshes out some of the drama she tends to create. Wills is a perfect modern cad, gold digger and general d-bag.

I especially enjoyed the sibling-esque relationship that developed between Colonel Brandon and Elinor. It’s been ages since I read the original, but Trollope seemed to do a better job of convincing me that Brandon cared for Elinor and the rest of the Dashwood family and not simply because he loved Marianne.

I read this in two days and I highly recommend it if you’re a fan of the original.

You can check out Joanna’s website here.

Book Review: Eligible

Eligible
By Curtis Sittenfeld

My Edition:
Hardcover, 492 pages
2016, Random House
ISBN: 9781400068326

The Bennets have come to modern America, Cincinnati, to be precise. Mr. and Mrs. Bennet reside in a crumbling old Tudor, with Mary: currently unemployed and working on yet another Master’s degree, Kitty: currently unemployed and attending a local CrossFit gym with Lydia, and Lydia: currently unemployed and attending a local CrossFit gym with Kitty. Liz and Jane have managed to escape to New York where they work as a magazine writer and yoga instructor respectively. But their father’s recent heart attack has brought the eldest daughters back home where they meet Chip Bingley, recently finished with a stint on a reality dating show and working with Fitzwilliam Darcy at a local hospital.  

I wanted to kick off Austen Month with a retelling of my favorite Austen novel, Pride and Prejudice. I’ve heard this book has mixed reviews, but I enjoyed it immensely and while it wasn’t perfect, I think it’s a fantastic modern adaptation.

I think Sittenfeld did a great job of keeping the tone of the original, while updating both characters and situations to suit current times – some scenes felt more realistic and developed than the original. While the bones of the story are the same, Sittenfeld added many little twists to make this story her own and I appreciated most of them.

Liz and Darcy’s relationship feels a little more natural, if not slightly more awkward thanks to Liz’s big mouth (which I found funny) and there’s finally some action! –wink wink- Jane is pushing forty, single and trying to have a baby via artificial insemination. Chip Bingley spent time on a Bachelor-esque show trying to find love and Darcy is a neurosurgeon. Kathy de Bourgh shines as a feminist icon and (sadly) Mary is more selfish and annoying than I’ve ever seen her portrayed before. Sittenfeld even includes some LGBT characters.

I wished Mary had been likable (for once!), but overall I was happy with how all the characters played out and the pacing kept me saying “just one more chapter” over and over – it helps that the chapters aren’t more than a few pages each.

I do think the story concluded on a weird note. Not the actual plot of the ending, but the last two pages had an odd tone that didn’t feel like a conclusion for me and brought the focus back to Mary, rather than Liz and Darcy. Rather than finishing with a smile I was left scratching my head.

I recommend this to anyone looking for a modern adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, if only for some scenes where Liz and Darcy actually make physical contact! Jokes aside, this is a solid adaptation and I enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed the updated rendition of Northanger Abbey.

You can visit Sittenfeld’s website or chat her up on Twitter.

Book Review: Gemina

Gemina
By Jay Kristoff & Amie Kaufman

My Edition:
Hardcover, 659 pages
2016, Knopf
ISBN: 9780553499155

Gemina’s plot overlaps some of Illuminae, but now we’re introduced to the residents of the Jump Station Heimdall and the difficulties they face as the Hypatia makes its way towards them, still fleeing BiTech Industries. Hanna is the station captain’s daughter and her dealings with Nik have been primarily to score dust for her and her friends. But BiTech Industries isn’t finished with their recent attack on Kerenza and now they’ve arrived at Heimdall to finish the cleanup and Hanna and Nik must team up to try to save their home and everyone in it.

I won’t say much about the plot here, as this book is relatively newer and I’m likely not the last person on Earth to have read Gemina (or Gemima as I keep writing and saying aloud), as I was with Illuminae.

Once again, we have a book made up of found documents, primarily chatlogs and write-ups of video feeds from various cameras across the jump station, compiled by the all-seeing Illuminae group. So let’s talk format first. I did still enjoy the documentary style and found it just as engrossing as the first book. The actual layout of the pages was slightly problematic though. There are significantly more graphics in this book than the first, including some sketches from Hanna’s diary, which I enjoyed, and chatlogs with dark backgrounds that made the text incredibly hard to read, which I did not enjoy. I think they tried a bit too hard or went a bit overboard with the design, as there were many more pages with spiraling text or sentences that zigged and zagged across multiple pages. Turning a nearly 700-page hardcover this way and that isn’t easy and it became tedious to keep up with some of the designs.

Now for the characters – Hanna was likable, though very similar to Kady in some ways. Her father is the captain of the jump station (while Kady’s is a chief officer or something similar) and she’s tough, determined, physically fit, smarter than most of the adults around her, etc. However, despite this, I liked her. She wouldn’t make a top list of characters for me, but she added to my enjoyment of the story. Nik was dull, considering his criminal background and I never got much of a feel for his cousin, Ella. The BiTech mercenaries were numerous and often referred to as both their real names and their call signs, so with the exception of a core few, I never had any idea who the story was talking about. I also thought that Hanna, Nik and Ella’s conversations had a bit too much levity considering the amount of danger they were in and the numerous deaths they experienced once the BiTech group came in. I know there were comedic moments between Kady and Ezra in Illuminae (and maybe there’s an equal number in each book) but Gemina felt like it had too many. Never having been in a life-threatening situation before, I clearly can’t speak from experience, but I don’t feel I’d joke quite so often.

I keep mentioning Illuminae and while reading I couldn’t help but notice that Gemina hits many of the same beats as its predecessor. Again we have:

  • Smart, talented teens holding their own against trained military personnel with little to no help from adults
  • A twist on who the main antagonist is (though with Gemina this twist was so confusing I had to backtrack to the near beginning of the book to wrap my head around it and it killed any shock I might have experienced)
  • A young, hacker extraordinaire
  • An extra element of danger (here we have aliens instead of zombies)
  • Character death fake-outs
  • Convenient ending is convenient (though Gemina takes the cake between the two)

Despite some tedious graphics and familiar plot points, I still thoroughly enjoyed this book and read it over the course of two days. I wouldn’t rate it as highly as Illuminae, as the shine of the new experience has worn off, but I can’t wait to read the next book. If you liked Illuminae, it’s a safe bet you’ll enjoy Gemina as well.

 

Book Review: Breath of Earth

Breath of Earth
By Beth Cato

Not My Edition:
Paperback, 383 pages
2016, Harper Voyager
ISBN: 9780062422064

The year is 1906 and the United States has formed an alliance with Japan, calling themselves the United Pacific, with dreams of world domination – starting with China. Ingrid Carmichael lives in San Francisco with her mentor and guardian, who is secretly training her to be a geomancer – a powerful mage who can harness the power of earthquakes. Ingrid is the only known female geomancer and her powers are proving to be far beyond what any other geomancer has known. After an attack on the other wardens of San Francisco, Ingrid must flee her home and fight a battle not only for her life, but for the safety of her state.

Alternate history isn’t a genre I read often, but it’s one I do enjoy. In this version of 1906, the United States has adopted many Japanese customs thanks to their alliance. They are currently waging war against China, as the Japanese hope to use the country to ease their own overcrowded land. There are some Chinese immigrants on U.S. land but they’re treated as second-class citizens and the tension between the three groups is reaching a breaking point.

There are also steampunk elements to this story, as the magic collected by the geomancers can be used to power many machines, such as blimps, cars, tanks and even common household objects like phones. There are also weapons like Tesla rods, which basically seem like Taser-sticks that can be telescoped out more easily zap the shit out of someone.

In addition to the technology, there are different magical elements. First off, I enjoyed the idea of Geomancy. Those with the power can siphon energy from the earth during earthquakes and in some cases even the smallest tremors. They then put that energy into crystals which are used to power various devices. In Ingrid’s case, she can also store the power in her body and use it to give herself increased strength and even barrier-like protection bubbles. There are other schools of magic as well, though Reiki, healing magic, is the only one heavily discussed. But even Reiki is complex, as there are Light and Dark forms – those who practice light Reiki harvest life energy from plants in order to heal people, whereas those who use dark Reiki take their energy from animals and even people, thus healing more powerfully.

Mythical creatures also exist in this world and while I enjoyed that idea, I don’t think it played out well in the book. I sadly forget the term Cato’s characters use for magical creatures – something like mythics – but they’re mentioned briefly in the beginning of the book, like Ingrid enjoying seeing unicorns, even if they’re used to pull carriages. Then towards the end we’re introduced to selkies and even a giant, two-headed snake, but they didn’t seem to fit properly in the world and felt crammed into an already busy plot.

The plot moved along at a nice pace and there was a fair bit of action, but unfortunately I didn’t care for any of the characters; most fell flat and Ingrid was downright annoying. I don’t want this to turn into a rant about her, so I’ll try to keep it brief.

First off, I understand that having your character describe themselves to the reader in a way that seems natural is difficult. However, Ingrid is constantly talking about her hair, skin and robust curves. Every time she stopped to talk about her ample hips or breasts, I was pulled out of the story. This happens in many stories, but Ingrid’s self-descriptions felt excessive. She also develops the hots for the male protagonist and often thought about how handsome he was or how he made her lady bits warm and tingly in the middle of life-threatening action! I get it, he’s hot and you want to have sex with him, but I don’t believe you’d be thinking about this when you’re both about to die and you’re concentrating on using your magic to save your lives! Ugh.

Ingrid is also mixed race and adding that to the fact that she’s a woman, her life is considerably more difficult than those of the men around her, starting with the fact that she must keep her magic a secret and cannot train as a male student would. I understood that Ingrid felt marginalized and that men around her treated her with blatant disrespect simply because of her sex and skin color. Yet I don’t feel this point was accomplished with any grace or subtlety and it was another point that constantly pulled me from the story. Ingrid was always telling the reader how she was disrespected due to her looks and gender and social status, rather than letting the characters around her and the story elements show that. She simply didn’t evoke any empathy and I think her narration hindered more than it helped.

This review turned out to be a lot longer than I expected. Overall, this book was alright. There were some elements I enjoyed but the lack of a connection with the character will keep me from reading the next book, despite the cliffhanger ending.

You can check out Beth’s website or tweet her.

Book Review: Space of Her Own

Asimov’s Space of Her Own
By Various Authors

My Edition:
Paperback, 244 pages
1983, Ace Books
ISBN: 0441778712

This book contains 17 sci-fi stories written by women. The subjects range from alien worlds, post-apocalyptic scenarios, advanced technology and adventures through space.

I initially purchased this book because my goddess Tanith Lee has a story in it and I finally picked it up thanks to Vintage Sci-fi Month. I didn’t dislike any of the stories, though I naturally preferred some over the others. I’m just going to highlight the ones I had the most thoughts about.

The Sidon in the Mirror by Connie Willis: This was a slightly trippy look at life in a small community on a mining planet. The world building was fairly complex considering the length, but I think I got a good taste of what Willis created. I enjoyed that characters had a local dialect. Overall it was sad and a little mysterious.

The Jarabon by Lee Killough: Killough created an interesting and compelling thief, as well as a unique form of space travel. I really loved where she went with this and would have loved for this to be a full-length novel. I wanted to know more about her badass thief-lady and her sordid past.

Belling Martha by Leigh Kennedy: This is a post-apocalyptic tale where food is scarce and winter might not end. A young girl has escaped a religious camp and made her way to the city to seek her father. This story was incredibly fucked up and a little gross, but believable. I was really into what was going on and this is another one I’d love a novel of.

La Reine Blanche by Tanith Lee: Tanith gives readers a fairy-tale-esque short about a widowed queen trapped in a tower and a magic raven who comes to see her. This had her classic atmospheric world-building and otherworldly characters, though it deals with some timey-wimey stuff so it was a tad confusing.

Miles to go Before I Sleep by Julie Stevens: Another tale set after some sort of apocalypse has hit the earth and created a divide between those who live in cities and those who fend for themselves in small towns. It had a sort of Mad Max feel because I got the feeling fuel sources were low and perhaps plant life as well? I really wanted a novel of this and I felt that just as I had an inkling of what was going on in this world, the story was over!

The Ascent of the North Face by Ursula K. Le Guin: Alright, I’m calling out this tale because I honestly don’t know what to make of it. There is a party of explorers climbing something, perhaps a mountain, except they refer to sections like the Roof and Chimney. I was confused as to whether these were tiny people scaling a normal sized house, normal sized people scaling a giant house, or if it was really just an oddly named mountain.

Blue Heart by Stephanie A. Smith: The main character in this is a sort of light house warden who can mentally connect to some sort of net that guides spaceships through her area of space. But she’s getting old and worried that she won’t be able to do her job much longer, so she’s looking into transferring her consciousness into a robot. I enjoyed the technology mentioned in this story and the general sadness it evoked.

Fire-Caller by Sydney J. Van Scyoc: This is a tale of slavery and warring peoples and a woman who can create fire from within herself when she speaks to the old gods. Another very atmospheric tale that I would have loved a full-length novel of. Just as I had an idea of what was going on and became attached to the characters, the story ended.

I’m thankful for Vintage Sci-fi Month because it prompts me to pick up some books that I probably would have left alone for who knows how long. This is a great collection for anyone looking for female voices, especially as all of these tales were written in the 80s, just as female writers were really starting to break into the genre and earn respect for their craft.

Book Review: Warbreaker

Warbreaker
By Brandon Sanderson

My Edition:
Paperback, 656 pages
2010, Tor
ISBN: 9780765360038

The cities of T’Telir and Idris are on the brink of war. T’Telir is ruled by the Returned, heroes reborn as gods and the powerful God King. Each week the people of the city offer their gods Breath – the life force that each person possesses and some know how to use to bring ordinary objects to life to do their bidding. The former royal family lives in Idris and has offered one of their daughters to be the wife of the God King, in hopes that by honoring an old treaty with T’Telir, the powerful city won’t declare war on Idris. But the priests of the gods are clamoring for war and when a mysterious man with a sentient sword shows up, he’ll do all he can do to stop it.

First off, I have to admit that I owned this book for over a year before reading it and I only picked it up because the friend who purchased it for me, continually reminded me that I needed to read it. What a fool I was for waiting so long! This is definitely one of my all-time favorite books now and I’m still giddy thinking about everything that took place in the story. I know I’m not going to be coherent when reviewing this because I love it too much, so probably you should just read this book.

All the stars – I’m giving it all the stars, just so you know. Just reaching into the sky, grabbing handfuls of them and throwing them at this book. That’s basically my review!

In all seriousness, much like The Lies of Locke Lamora, I knew within reading the first few pages of this book that I was going to love it. Before we’re given any real intro to the characters, we start learning about Breath. I love a lot of things about this book, but the idea of Breath and the way Sanderson develops it might be my favorite. I’ve never read about a magical or spiritual system quite like Breath, The Iridescent Tones, The Returned and the powers of Awakening that he created. I won’t do it justice if I try to explain these things, so probably you should just read this book.

My second favorite thing about this book was every single character. Yes, I love them all. Everyone was so well developed and complex, I was constantly kept on my toes. I have favorite favorites among them of course, but they’re all fantastic. I was never bored or frustrated when the point of view switched to another character and the variation added depth to the story.

I know I’m late joining the Sanderson fan club and I have more of his work on my shelves that I need to stop ignoring (I don’t do it on purpose, I just have a lot of books!) If you’re a fantasy fan and you haven’t read Warbreaker, I highly suggest you should, if that’s not already apparent. I’ve been told by my friend that this is a stand-alone novel (though the door is wide open for a sequel and it needs to happen, dammit) and that it’s a good place to start if you’ve never read his book before. So, probably, you should just read this book!

You can visit Sanderson’s website and Tweet at him too.

Book Review: Dark Castle, White Horse

Dark Castle, White Horse
By Tanith Lee

My Edition:
Paperback, 302 pages
1986, DAW
ISBN: 0886771137

A girl in a black castle sends a summoning spell for someone to help free her from her ancient guardians. A wandering bard with a magical harp made with bone answers the call, but so does a force of evil. A prince who cannot remember his past, nor even his name, finds himself atop a talking horse on his way to a castle made of bone.

This book is actually comprised of two separate stories, The Castle of Dark and Prince on a White Horse. Thematically, I’m sure they have something in common, aside from both being fantasy adventures, but I don’t really know what. I picked it up because I need to read more of my Tanith collection and it’s vintage sci-fi month (hosted by my friend Jason) so what better time to start? Also that cover! –heart eyes-

Sometimes it’s hard for me to review Tanith’s work because I love almost everything of hers I’ve read so far. I just want to say “I love her work, read it!” Her books are instantaneously atmospheric and immersive and I love her simplistic, yet detailed style. I tweeted about the feeling of experiencing real magic when I read a book of hers (or any favorite author really.)  So I’ll try to make some sense, but I can’t promise anything.

The Castle of Dark introduces readers to Lilune, a young girl imprisoned in a strange castle by two old crones. She knows nothing about the world outside the castle because she’s never allowed to leave and she is allowed to roam the castle grounds only at night, as she must sleep during the day. She uses the only spell she’s learned from her captors in an attempt to summon someone to help her escape and so Lir, a harper, comes to her aid. Once free of the castle, the two blunder their way through the surrounding forest, hampered by Lilune’s weakness to sunlight and her compulsion to sleep during the day. They’re separated and when Lilune is off adventuring on her own is when the book truly started to show Tanith’s skill for world building and atmosphere. I liked Lilune because she showed growth, despite the short length of the story. Lir felt a little standard, as far as the hero character goes, but I didn’t mind.

Prince on a White horse had a surprisingly funny tone. A prince who knows nothing about who he is or where he’s from wakes in a strange land with only a talking horse to guide him – though when asked, the horse replies that he cannot talk. Even though the prince is tasked with saving this weird realm from a source of great evil, the story remained lighthearted. I don’t think I’ve ever chuckled so much when reading one of Tanith’s books before. The prince has a very RPG experience, in that he’s incredibly lucky and many characters come to aid or hinder him in cliché ways, but that’s what made the story entertaining.

I, of course, recommend this book to everyone because it’s Tanith and I enjoyed it.

Book Review: The Gilded Cage

The Gilded Cage
By Vic James

My Edition:
ARC e-book, 368 pages
2017, Del Rey
ISBN: 9780425284155
Expected Publication Date: February 14, 2017

Welcome to modern day England, where the aristocratic have magical powers and everyone else must serve ten years of slavery.

Yep.

If you’re sensing some snark in my blurb, it’s because I didn’t enjoy this book and I honestly have no clue how else to summarize it. Yes, I read the description and I did see the bit about commoners serving those with magic, known as “the Equals” for some reason that either wasn’t disclosed or I didn’t pay attention to, but I didn’t realize it was ten years of actual slavery, complete with the loss of all rights and “personhood.”

So let’s start with my biggest issue with this book – I don’t buy the premise. Now, I’ve read dystopias before and oftentimes there is a suspension of belief required to really get into the story. But I do not buy that in modern times, people would willingly serve a small class of people, by literally becoming slaves for ten years of their lives, even if they get to choose at what age they do so (well, by the time they turn 60 or something). Other countries have Equals and handle magic with varying degrees, but I believe England was one of the few countries that have these slave laws and it made it even harder to believe that the common people wouldn’t have broken free of this ridiculous agreement by now.

Yes, the Equals are all rich (because, of course) and some are very powerful, but throughout the story we realize most of these people never even display their powers, making me wonder all the more why they’re in a position to command slaves at this point. Many of them don’t even know the extent of their own powers and I wondered whether they could actually snuff out a serious rebellion.

But before I even realized how ridiculous I thought the overall plot of the book was, I was bored to death by the characters. I didn’t care about Luke, Abi and their family and how they were going into slavery. I didn’t care about any of the clichéd Equals. They were so bland I couldn’t even bring myself to hate them, which would have at least been entertaining to some degree. Oh, well there were two sisters named Bouda and Bodina and I hate their names, so that’s something I suppose.

All in all, I was predominantly bored by this book and was relieved when it was over. I believe this is to be a trilogy, but I’ll pass on that.

I expected more from this book – more atmosphere, more character development, more excitement. Unfortunately, I can’t say that I would recommend this book to anyone. However, I seem to be in the minority compared to the other reviews I’ve seen so far, so perhaps you may enjoy this.

I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. All opinions in this post are my own.
You can visit Vic’s website.