By: Eleanor Herman
Published: August 25, 2015 by Harlequin Teen
Source: Netgalley ARC from publisher
(Goodreads / Amazon)
Imagine a time when the gods turn a blind eye to the agony of men, when the last of the hellions roam the plains and evil stirs beyond the edges of the map. A time when cities burn, and in their ashes, empires rise.MY REVIEW:
Alexander, Macedonia’s sixteen-year-old heir, is on the brink of discovering his fated role in conquering the known world but finds himself drawn to newcomer Katerina, who must navigate the dark secrets of court life while hiding her own mission: kill the Queen. But Kat’s first love, Jacob, will go to unthinkable lengths to win her, even if it means competing for her heart with Hephaestion, a murderer sheltered by the prince. And far across the sea, Zofia, a Persian princess and Alexander’s unmet fiancée, wants to alter her destiny by seeking the famed and deadly Spirit Eaters.
Weaving fantasy with the salacious and fascinating details of real history, New York Times bestselling author Eleanor Herman reimagines the greatest emperor the world has ever known: Alexander the Great, in the first book of the Blood of Gods and Royals series.
First of all, this cover!!! I loved it the second I saw it and was intrigued to learn more. I'm sort of a big fan of all things YA Fantasy right now. Okay maybe not all but definitely a lot.
To the story itself, I loved the setting! I loved the magic aspect, the romance mixed in the story lines, and I even teared up at a point in one character's story line. I'd like to read more and see where this all goes. I loved the historical background and I love the time period. I look for many more good things to come next.
Now for a few dislikes/irritations I had:
1. I found the beginning to be a slow build up but once it grabbed my interest I was eager for more.
2. The names are not normal common names, which is to be expected given the historical time period, but some I just downright couldn't figure out how to pronounce and that annoyed me because when I can't figure out words in a book it bogs me down as I try to figure it out.
3. The chapters are alternating POV's from 7 different main characters, which leads to so many different character plots, that I found myself getting a bit confused in trying to remember what was going on with who, seeing as how not all of these character's paths were crossing for much of the book. For some reason it didn't flow real smoothly to me...until closer to the end when paths become more clear.
4. Alexander, one of the main characters, is supposed to be a 16 year old prince. Honestly, his description and the way he handles himself is definitely more like an 18-20 year old. In fact, all of the main young characters (6 of the 7 are teenagers) seem more like that age range. It's irritating to me to see kids in books being portrayed as acting older than they would in reality. The story would've made better sense to me to change their ages to at least 18. HOWEVER - in the author's notes she talks about how historically Alexander the Great won his first battle at the age of 16. So I fully recognize that teenagers back then were perhaps much more mature than teenagers in the 21st century would be.
5. The biggest dislike I had was that the Netgalley version I received had some strange sentence structure errors. I know that ARC's are not the final version of a book, but any time I have to piece together the sentences just to make them make sense, it takes away from the enjoyment of reading the book. This was a re-occurrence every so many pages so it was definitely impossible to avoid and hard to overlook seeing as how you had to figure out the sentence so as not to miss anything important. Unfortunately this DID affect my final rating.
If you love YA Fantasy books with magic and kings and princesses and castles, and a historical fiction vibe then definitely give this a read!
True loyalty - it's almost unheard of.
She has been more than a girl to him - she has been a destiny, a driving force, a compass.
"But it's not just size or strength that wins a battle," she says. "It's intelligence."
Language Rating: 1 (light)
Mature Content Rating: 1 (light)
Final Rating: 3.5 stars