Friday, January 25, 2013

FALLING KINGDOMS

Falling Kingdoms (Falling Kingdoms, #1)Book Review:  Falling Kingdoms

Author:  Morgan Rhodes
Published:  2012
Series:  Falling Kingdoms #1

Once again I have fallen for the cover of a book...hard!  And I suppose the premise behind it got me intrigued.  But after mixed reviews I wasn't so sure I wanted to waste 412 pages of reading time on this book.  But I'm a sucker for fantasy...and this book sucked me in...

The Setting
I'm not really sure how to summarize the plot for this book.  Like a lot of fantasy books go, Falling Kingdoms has it's fair share of corrupt kings, magic, curses and heroes.  Really most of this book reads like a juicy soap opera.  We have three distinct countries, each ruled by separate kings.  In each of these kingdoms we follow key characters.  We learn what motivates and depresses each of these characters.  Mostly we follow the happenings of the prince and princesses from each country.  But what happens when these characters' lives intertwine?
  Well it's a hot mess!  Love, revenge and unexpected allies are a direct result.  With one rich country and the other two fairly desolate, it isn't long before the two poor countries team up and war with the richer.  But which king is more just, evil or gullible?  Magic is quickly disappearing from the land.  Who will be the "prophesied one" to break the curse and restore the magic to its proper place?

What I LIKED about this book
I loved when the characters' lives intertwined with each other.  You understand each point of view, each reason for action.  And while most fantasy curses and spells are hard to keep track of, this book had one that was fairly easy to grasp.  And I'm hoping I'll learn more in book 2...

What I DISLIKED about this book
Falling Kingdoms had several loose ends or discrepancies that I couldn't just ignore.  There's a romance that starts and ends within 5 pages.  Some magic seeds that were searched for yet never used wisely when appeared.  Also, I should mention that one character had incestuous feelings toward a sibling, even though these feelings turned out to be one sided and the sibling, as far as I can tell, never reciprocated these feelings.  No swearing or sexual situations but there was quite a bit of blood and gore.

Parting Thoughts
Overall I'm going to give Falling Kingdoms 4 out of 5 stars.  An entertaining and in some parts thrilling fantasy read.  I think some of the negative reviews are referring to Falling Kingdoms as an YA Game of Thrones.  In truth I have never read Game of Thrones so I'm not sure I can compare the two, but I definitely suggest this book to YA fantasy fanatics.  And I'm hooked...I will have to read the second book in the series to see what happens to all of my favorite characters.    

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