Saturday, January 17, 2015

Review: Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

Title: Kiss of Deception
Author: Mary E. Pearson
Publisher: Henry Holt
Publishing Date: July 8th 2014
Pages: 486
Genre: YA High Fantasy
Series: TheRemnant Chronicles
Source: Audio


A princess must find her place in a
reborn world.
She flees on her wedding day.
She steals ancient documents from the Chancellor's secret collection.
She is pursued by bounty hunters sent
by her own father.
She is Princess Lia, seventeen, First Daughter of the House of Morrighan.
The Kingdom of Morrighan is steeped in tradition and the stories of a bygone world, but some traditions Lia can't abide. Like having to marry someone she's never met to secure a political alliance.
Fed up and ready for a new life, Lia flees to a distant village on the morning of her wedding. She settles in among the common folk, intrigued when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deceptions swirl and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—secrets that may unravel her world—even as she feels herself falling in love.

I was really hesitant going into this book. I heard so many great things about it. I didn't want to not like it when everyone else loved it. I am so picky over my fantasies. I really enjoyed this book. I didn't get as wowed as some but I did enjoy the book bunches. It was a great storyline with great characters but the pacing just lacked a bit for me I think.... the romance too. But it was still a great read and I can see why so many readers loved it.

Lia is promised to marry a neighboring kingdom's prince. She has never met him. She does not want to marry him. She has a plan. The night before he is expected in the kingdom, she runs away with her servant and friend. The flee to a small town and Lia tries to blend in. Gets a job at the tavern, helps with chores, finds a place to stay. What she doesn't know is an assassin and the prince she bolted from have followed her to this town oh and war is on the brink.

I really enjoyed this story. I found that the story and the characters are what kept me driven to finish this novel. There are 3 pov in this story, Lia's, the Assassins and the Prince. Now for the longest time we do not know which of the men are which and that was very exciting for me. Some chapters were told from the assassin's and the prince's point of view then other times they were told from Rafe and Kaden's point of view. So it kept things a mystery. I did however figure who was who pretty much early on. Didn't know if I was right til about the middle of the book. It made reading this story more fun for me. 

I listened to this one on audio and I would like to mention I fell the audio (with awesome narrators) worked really well with this book. They made the characters come to life and kept them straight for me. I think I would have been a bit confused if reading this book. I am not sure since I didn't have the book and I am not sure how the format worked for the story, but the audio I felt was the way to go for me to enjoy this story to the fullest.

I liked the story, the princess running for her freedom being followed by a killer and a jaded man. It was great. The story also had romance, but to me it had a few good moments, but it wasn't as central as I would have liked it to be. I loved what romance was there and just wanted more.

Lia was an exceptional character for me. I loved everything about her. At first she felt a little selfish and really she was but only because of what was expected from her. I felt for her. She was miserable and she wanted to be free. She wanted to be independent and she made her own way to do it. Unfortunately there were consequences to her decisions as she learns and she tries to do things right. I really did love her.

All in all this was a very solid read except for the pacing. The pacing lacked. The beginning was really exciting and so was the end, but the middle slowed a bit and I could have done without some of the scenes.

Other than the pacing and the lack of romance.... It was a great fantasy read and I recommend it to those who love fantasy and not so sure about it. I think its great for both the fantasy and non fantasy reader.

It was good really really good. 

I suppose I have always been enamored with story and character. My mother tells me I could be the most annoying little kid, waking up each day as a new character. Every morning she would have to ask me "who" I was for that day, because unless properly addressed I refused to answer anyone.
One time when I was about four years old, my parents were out shopping at Sears. They each thought the other had me by the hand when in fact I was exploring my own aisle (translation: I was lost!) Two salesladies found me and sat me on the counter, asking me my name so they could page my parents. I remember their consternation when I would only answer "Little Red Riding Hood." They couldn't shake my real name out of me no how, no way. I knew the value of persistence even then. My parents say they nearly fell over, when over the loud speaker they heard, "Would the parents of Little Red Riding Hood please come claim their child?" They knew exactly "who" was lost. These days I mostly wake up as myself, though I do seem to hang out with a lot of "characters" during the day.
Usually when people mention their education in their bios they only mention their college degrees, but to me, it is just as important what happened way before that. Wow--second grade! I will never forget Mrs. Alsenz. Boy, could she tell a great story! She would make them up and pretty soon have a classroom of wiggly kids exuberantly telling stories right along with her. And then there was Mrs. Bonsey in fourth grade. She always praised my writing and made a shy little girl feel like she might actually excel at something. And finally in twelfth grade came Mr. Kirk, crusty on the outside with a heart of gold on the inside, who loved the English language and taught his students to do the same. (Hey, Mr. Kirk, do you see me waving at ya?)
Later I went on to get a BFA from Long Beach State University in art. I worked for a time as an artist then started the most challenging job of my life--motherhood. Holy smokes, no one told me there would be no coffee breaks. But it is the most rewarding job I have ever had (watch out--I'll start dragging out the pictures)

Still later, I went to San Diego State University where I received my teaching credential. I went on to teach many different grades but it was my second grade students who pushed me back into writing. During Writing Workshop I would sit with them and write, loving the process, loving the stories, and lo and behold deciding I would love to return to my first love. That's a whole lot of lovin' going on and luckily for me I was able to do just that. Not that writing is easy. I have a huge stack of rejections to prove it, but I still have enough of that Little Red Riding Hood persistence in me to keep on going.
Now I write full time from my home in San Diego. My books to date are The Adoration of Jenna Fox, A Room on Lorelei Street, Scribbler of Dreams, and David v. God. More are definitely on the way.

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