Falling Kingdoms by: Morgan Rhodes (2012)
Genre: YA/High Fantasy
Publisher: razor bill
Publisher: razor bill
Source: The Library
Falling Kingdoms is kind of a PG-13 version of the Game of Thrones series. I did like this novel, but it lacked the elements to make me love it.
It took me a really long time to care about any of the characters in Falling Kingdoms. I’m not sure if it was because I only got a little bit of time with each one due to the rapid POV shifts, but I just didn’t really have a connection with any of them. Cleo was too naïve and spoiled and weak, although she does get better. Mangus was kind of a jerk, even though I kind of see where he is coming from. Lucia was somewhat boring, even considering her important role. Jonas was a somewhat irrational/a little crazy character. I could go on and on considering there are more characters who we get POVs from but I don't want to get into every single one of them. (See what I mean by a lot of POVs? I should have counted them all.) The romance in this book is crazy and weird, and not really in a good way. I did however love the romance between Cleo and her guard, even though it was insta-love. The other romance, well it was somewhat icky, I’ll just let you find out about that one on your own. Oh and then there was the romance where Jonas just uses someone to get his way and doesn't really like her thing. Sigh. I like drama, and I like crazy events in my books, but for some reason I just wasn't loving what was going down in Falling Kingdoms all the time, though at others times I was engrossed.
Falling Kingdoms is a well written fantasy novel. It was fast paced (seriously, crap hits the fan in the first couple of pages) and the general story was good. Rhodes did a wonderful job with the world building. The three lands are well described with a nice amount of background so the reader can easily understand what is going on in the book. Although I didn’t love this book and it wasn’t one of my favorites, I did start to get more into the book towards the end. So I will probably be reading the next one. (I mean this story isn't even close to being finished and I want to know what happens.) I loved the bloody battle scenes and the deaths that came unexpected that had me seeing red. Another great thing about this book, the lines between good and bad are blurred, it isn’t always cut and dry and that is a very nice change from the norm.
If you are looking for a young adult version of Game of Thrones (death, backstabbing, and crazy relationships) this should be your pick. Falling Kingdoms is also a good book for fantasy lovers who enjoy a good bloody battle among other things.