Saturday, January 31, 2015

Review: The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

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.

Wow this is a tough one to write a review on..I think I will be starting with what sounds like an essay. Sorry.

The first book in The Remnant Chronicles opens in a typical fantasy story way with a beautiful princess getting ready for her arranged marriage to a prince from a far-off kingdom meant to seal an alliance.  We soon learn she has no intention of going through with the wedding and runs with her handmaiden/best friend to a small town.  Here she is determined to live a real life: work for her keep, fall in love.

Of course, we learn the prince was not happy about the royal engagement either. So he is so curious about the girl that had the balls to stand him up, he decides to follow her.  At the same time, with the marriage alliance broken, the barbarians send an assassin after Princess Lia (the heroine).

So here is the catch. Who is the prince? Who is the assassin? This is so masterfully written, it's quite stunning. Pearson gives us the names of the pair. The pair interact with Princess Lia. There are chapters entitled "The Assassin" and "The Prince".  There are also chapters with their names as titles. She drops little hints to help you figure out which one is which because it isn't directly stated until halfway through the book.  Frankly, I did not even realize she did this. I just assumed who they were and was completely shocked at the big reveal. I went back and reread the chapters entitled "The Assassin" and "The Prince".  Nope, nothing was given away about the identities.

So here is the thing.  You could easily assume one way or the other. And I found myself liking both characters pretty equally.  Pearson did a great job of blurring the lines between black and white, good and evil.  I know this has been talked about a lot with this book.  But it is truly amazing.  As we get to know more about the assassin (when we know who he is of course) he doesn't seem like such a bad guy, or a barbarian at that. The Kiss of Deception is one of the deepest YA fantasy novels I have read to date.  I could go on and on about it.  But that would be useless babble.

What is my overall opinion? I loved this book so much. I can't wait for the next book in The Remnant Chronicles to come out. I have it pre-ordered.  I even forced my mom to start reading it.

No comments:

Post a Comment