by Mary E Pearson
Series: Remnant Chronicles (Book 1)
Hardcover: 496 pages
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) (July 8, 2014)
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In a society steeped in tradition, Princess Lia’s life follows a preordained course. As First Daughter, she is expected to have the revered gift of sight—but she doesn’t—and she knows her parents are perpetrating a sham when they arrange her marriage to secure an alliance with a neighboring kingdom—to a prince she has never met.
On the morning of her wedding, Lia flees to a distant village. She settles into a new life, hopeful when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deception abounds, and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—even as she finds herself falling in love.
Such a Lovely Treat
When Andye handed me Kiss of Deception, she really handed me a piping hot vanilla latte with matching vanilla scone (in a neatly folded mauve petite bag) on a cool, cloudy day.
In other words, it was an ideal delicious afternoon snack, right when I need a breather and pick-me-up.
Of course, I read it over a series of rather hot summer days, mostly late at night, and I realize not everyone likes vanilla lattes, but my point is that Kiss of Deception was a really great book.
Being high fantasy, I was already inclined to like it. Then I wanted to escape so badly to the colorful world of Terravin along with Lia and Pauline. And the romance, sigh. There was also an interesting spiritual element that expanded through the story, causing the princess to flourish into whom she was destined to be and prepare us for the over-arching plot in the series.
The Kiss of Deception reminded me a lot of the Fire and Thorns series by Rae Carson. It was a good mashup between those, Graceling, The Queen’s Thief, The Winner’s Curse, and The Seven Realms Series.
Everything changed for me on that page 300 exactly in my ARC.
Don’t even think about it. Don’t look!
Really, don’t. Because then you will end up like Andye, and totally not appreciate this book for what it is.
I adored this book because my view of everything shifted and I had to mentally start over. Of course, I didn’t realize it was page 300 when this began, it was rather a gradual awareness that I might have gotten something major wrong. I went back, flipping through pages, and realized I had stumbled into the genius of the Kiss of Deception, and why all the other reviewers so far loved it too.
When my vantage-point shifted, a whole new realm of possibilities for where the story would take us blossomed. And then it tooks us there, and I was in such conflict of who I wanted, what I liked, and then when I thought I figured it out what I wanted to happen, something else happened that I wanted but didn’t want, and eek!
(I can make that last run-on sentence longer if you need a better understanding of my excitement.)
Just read it. You’ll love it.
At first, Lia, our heroine, just seemed generic to me. Not amazing. Definitely not bad or boring. Just average. For all I know, I could be best friends with her, but she wasn’t someone I was dying to meet. Andye told me she wasn’t thrilled with Lia, either, being annoyed at her naivette. I mean, really? Surely if her brother found her, couldn’t some other unsavory characters? And sometimes she says things when she shouldn’t, and doesn’t say enough when she should.
But, my view of Lia changed over the course of the story. In fact, she became like a doppelganger of Elisa (not me, Elisa, but Fire and Thorns, Elisa). It is pretty obvious Lia changed, something she mused about a few times in the last chapters. The further along the book got, the more she toughened up. By the end she wasn’t just a princess making a new happy life, but she was brave, intelligent, and strong. Admirable. I wanted to be her by page 488.
(But not really, because her life sucks, minus that she is a princess in a beautiful kingdom.)
But who cares about Lia? Or the sweet bestie, Pauline, or Lia’s brothers, the sassy hardened barmaid, Gwyneth, or Birdi, Eben, or Dihara? Wait, I do care a little about Dihara. Don’t ever name anyone you know that, let alone someone you want to be the wizened respected guru Dihara! That name is horrible. I couldn’t read it -every time- without thinking of other, more gross things.
The characters that matter are the boys.
I was totally led-on by the love-interests in the book. They both surprised me, and were mysterious and handsome in their own ways. At first, I didn’t even have a clue why Lia would even be interested in Kaden, but eventually I start to understand his conflicts, history, and I began to fall for him too. But I also fell for Rafe, because I just found him so easy to connect with.
Seriously, though. The boys complicate things. The boys make the story. The boys save us, fight for us, destroy us, and woo us.
I mean Lia. Not us. Lia.
Did I mention I wanted to be Lia by the end of the story?
When I put this book down, I totally rated it as a five. That was a few weeks ago, though now. I’m scared I am rating it too high, but maybe that is just an excuse for me to read it again. *wink*
Considering, love this book for me, will you? Tell me if you liked it also, and if it was your vanilla latte and scone.
Violence - Moderate
Nothing else to note. I’d consider this a clean read.
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