“Even a book can be dangerous in the wrong hands, and when that happens, you blame the hands, but you also read the book.”
What’s it about: In a fantasy universe that is somehow a future version of our universe, but actually nothing like it except that we share some of the same literature, a young girl named Kelsea seeks to reclaim the throne of her kingdom, The Tearling, and free it from the oppressive dominion of the neighbouring country ruled by an evil queen.
What I thought: I’ve seen a lot of mixed reviews about this book, and I am a bit mixed myself. I loved Kelsea as a character. She was strong, intelligent, knew right from wrong, and had a very realistic hang up about her looks. I have heard so many bad things about how Kelsea felt about her looks from reviewers, and I kind of get the impression that these people are probably attractive themselves. Living in a world that values beauty above nearly anything else, you’re constantly aware that you are not beautiful and constantly reminded of it. Kelsea has so many other wonderful qualities, but yet she often couldn’t see past her looks. I found this so relatable and realistic. Kelsey and her head guard, The Mace, are really what makes this book. They are wonderful characters that made it hard to put the book down, which is good, because a lot of the rest of this book was a bit of a mess.
The world building was just strange and didn’t really make any sense. It was a futuristic version of our world, but it’s all medieval and really the only thing that is similar is that there are some of our books. I kind of feel like this was just done so she could mention ‘the seven volumes of Rowling’. This would have worked far better as just an alternate fantasy universe with no connection to our own. The way it was done just felt clumsy and not really thought out properly. There was also a problem with inconsistencies in this book and just a lot of stuff that didn’t make a whole lot of sense. There was just no explanation for many things that just made it not seem like it had anything to do with our current world.
The first third of the book was definitely the strongest as pace slowed down thoroughly once new POV characters were introduced. But overall I quite liked this book because of Kelsea. I thought she as an awesome bad-ass female and I loved her and I identified with her more than many characters I have read. If it wasn’t for the clumsy world building this could have been a really great book. I will be reading the sequel because I want more Kelsea!
thank you to the publisher for providing this book for review.