Reluctant Prince by Dani-Lyn Alexander
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Current Rating on Goodreads: 3.38 of 5 stars
Synopsis (via Goodreads):
Betrayal lies cloaked in shadow.
Seventeen year old Ryleigh Donnovan is certain her life is cursed. Nothing ever goes smoothly, and her first job interview is no exception. An earthquake rocks the building, sending Ryleigh on a frantic search for her younger sister, a search which lands her in the hospital. Terrified they’ll push her for answers she can’t afford to give, Ryleigh flees with a mysterious stranger.
Jackson Maynard is about to be ordained as a Death Dealer, a warrior for the Kingdom of Cymmera, but first he must pass one more test. When he fails to acquire the human girl the prophet has chosen, he’s forced to stand trial for treason. Banished from his realm, he seeks out the girl from the vision, Ryleigh Donnovan, and together they embark on a journey to save his dying kingdom.
***Thank you Netgalley and Inkslinger PR for the copy***
I was in the cover reveal for Reluctant Prince, so when the blog tour came up, I decided to give it a go. However, RP wasn't what I expected and I didn't end up putting my review in the tour. I still participated though :)
I guess my main problem was I couldn't connect with the story. I love this kind of genre, but in Reluctant Prince there were a number of issues and the writing started off quite awkward, though it did improve through the book.
There was a rather large misconception. The tagline in the synopsis says 'Betrayal lies cloaked in shadow.' Yes, there was a betrayal. But I couldn't say that it was 'cloaked in shadow'. I don't know about anyone else, but it seemed rather obvious where the betrayal lay from the start.
(view spoiler)[I guess it wouldn't be as obvious if I had known how Kai acted before the events in Reluctant Prince, but because all I've read is Kai acting 'off', I'm judging him purely off his recent behaviour, and his recent behaviour was obviously suspect.
There's also the part where Kai was talking to someone – presumably Daygan – via a portal, but when Kai mentioned that Ryleigh beared the mark of a Queen, the presumed Daygan was surprised. But Daygan already knew about the mark from when he captured Ryleigh. So it wasn't Daygan, but then who? I have a sneaking suspicion of Chayce *gnaws lip* It'd be a horrible betrayal, but it would explain how Daygan knew of the tunnels..... (hide spoiler)]
And then there's the issue of Cymmera's hierarchy. I understand that this is a fantasy story and it doesn't necessarily follow the usual ideals, but how could it even be remotely possible to condemn the crown prince over something as trivial as failure to complete a task? And that the kingdom's 2nd in command (since when did a monarchy hold such a mundane term as 2nd in command anyway?) has greater power than the crown prince and almost as much as the King? And a horrid 2nd in command that contradicts the king at every turn at that ^^
Although I don't know a great deal about monarchies, this seems rather unseemly.
That said, I enjoyed the fantasy aspect of the story, with the two realms vying for power. Yes, I'm an obsessed fantasy lover ;) #guiltyascharged
There was also the problem with Mia's –Ryleigh's little sister– age.
It's like the author had trouble separating her views from that of the main characters. Sure, for Dani-Lyn's age, Mia can probably pass as a 'little girl' at 14 years of age, but in the eyes of Mia's sister Ryleigh, who is 17, or the eyes of Jackson, who is (equivalent to) 19, Mia isn't a little girl. She's a teenager, and only a few years younger than Ryleigh. And yet in RP, if Mia's age wasn't mentioned, I would have assumed that she was perhaps 8 or 9 years old, except for when she started blushing over a boy. So for me, Mia's character building was jagged and non-consistent.
The plot and most of the characters were interesting enough, but I couldn't really focus on the good points because of the distractions and issues I found while reading.
Overall, I think the series has potential, but it wasn't executed as well as I'd hoped.
—MissBloodsucker™ All Sucked Out!
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