Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

In the three kingdoms of Mytica, magic has long been forgotten. And while hard-won peace has reigned for centuries, a deadly unrest now simmers below the surface.

As the rulers of each kingdom grapple for power, the lives of their subjects are brutally transformed… and four key players, royals and rebels alike, find their fates forever intertwined. Cleo, Jonas, Lucia, and Magnus are caught in a dizzying world of treacherous betrayals, shocking murders, secret alliances, and even unforeseen love.

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

It’s the eve of war…. Choose your side.

I really, really wanted to like this book. I picked it up after being caught up in the hype surrounding Frozen Tides, the fourth book in the Falling Kingdoms series. The plot sounded intriguing and I love YA fantasy, what could go wrong? 

Falling Kingdoms is told through multiple points of view, but sadly by the end of the 412 pages I was unable to connect with any of the characters. They were simply awful and read as bland and one-dimensional. The main female characters, Cleo and Lucia, were irritating. Cleo, a princess, was self-centred and childish. At the beginning of the book she witnesses a brutal crime but refused to speak out or take a stand. Ever decision she took resulted in the death of those around her. Throughout the story she basically played the damsel in distress, waiting for her guards or love interests to save her. Lucia was never her own person, she (and her growing powers as a sorceress) was always being used by her father or older brother for personal or political gain. Either of these characters could have died and I would not have missed them. 

The romance in the book also did not work for me. Nothing flowed or appeared natural. One chapter the two characters are fighting or uninterested in each other and the next they are planning their futures together. I just did not believe it. Where was the lead up or the chemistry? 

While I did not like the characters or the way they were written, I really do love the cover artwork. The cloaked individual wielding two daggers is fierce. However, like most of the book, it seems disconnected from the actual plot. 

2 stars

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