August 8, 2013

Review: Falling Kingdoms by: Morgan Rhodes

Falling Kingdoms by: Morgan Rhodes (2012)
412 pages
Genre: YA/High Fantasy
Publisher: razor bill
Source: The Library
Goodreads Summary: In a land where magic has been forgotten but peace has reigned for centuries, a deadly unrest is simmering. Three kingdoms grapple for power—brutally transforming their subjects' lives in the process. Amidst betrayals, bargains, and battles, four young people find their fates forever intertwined:

Cleo: A princess raised in luxury must embark on a rough and treacherous journey into enemy territory in search of a magic long thought extinct.

Jonas: Enraged at injustice, a rebel lashes out against the forces of oppression that have kept his country impoverished—and finds himself the leader of a people's revolution centuries in the making.

Lucia: A girl adopted at birth into a royal family discovers the truth about her past—and the supernatural legacy she is destined to wield.

Magnus: Bred for aggression and trained to conquer, a firstborn son begins to realize that the heart can be more lethal than the sword. . . .

The only outcome that's certain is that kingdoms will fall. Who will emerge triumphant when all they know has collapsed?

My Review

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 na├»ve 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. 

RATING 3.5/5 


  1. This book has been on my TBR list for quite some time, though, I have a hard time believing that anything can really live up to GoT. The way you describe it, it sort of reminds me of Melissa Marr's "Carnival of Souls," where you end up liking some of the character's storylines but then there are others that you could do without.

    Since I trust your opinion like woah, I'll probably still read it but I won't put it at the top of the list anytime soon.

    1. I think you would like it, but yea it isn't a go out and read this right now kind of book!

  2. I hate it when POVs shift so quickly:P I haven't read or watched Game of Thrones, but I've heard it's awesome and that's cool that this is a young adult version of it. Thanks for the review!

    1. This was a good book, but the POVs were a little crazy.

  3. hahah so I think I might have been in a serious need of a Fantasy fix when I read this book because after reading the second paragraph of your review I totally agree with everything you said. The characters weren't that likable and the romance was a bit off. But I guess I just loved the dark, twisted, fast-paced fantasy story that it offset any other thoughts hah. I'm sorry this one wasn't the best for you but I'm glad you still liked it and are interested in reading the next book. I'm definitely going to read it so I will let you know how it is! (and I'll be more critical ;)) Great review!

    1. hahaha I will be reading the next one. I think reading this one after Throne of Glass wasn't the best idea because I loved Throne of Glass so much that nothing could have really lived up to it. I can't wait to see what you think of the next book after Falling Kingdoms! I'm interested to see how it goes.

  4. There have been a couple of mixed reviews about this one so I haven't actually picked it up yet and after reading your review I don't think I will.
    Great review :)

    1. Thanks for reading! It was an enjoyable read but I've read better young adult fantasy books. :)


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