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Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

Falling Kingdoms (edition 2012)

by Morgan Rhodes

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2933138,756 (3.59)7
Title:Falling Kingdoms
Authors:Morgan Rhodes
Info:Razorbill (2012), Hardcover, 400 pages
Collections:Your library

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Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

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2.5 stars. It was readable, but I didn't really enjoy it. There was a lot going on, but I didn't connect with any of the characters. It's hard to like a book if you don't like any of the people. ( )
  Mirandalg14 | Aug 18, 2014 |
This book was relatively compelling, although it suffered from quick connections with seemingly little motivation behind it. (I'm looking at you two, Cleo and Theon). It also gave me the feeling of Game of Thrones with an easier to swallow page length and swifter to read. That being said, the second book sounds like it'll be better. Let's hope. ( )
  liveshipvivacia | Apr 26, 2014 |
Too many characters.
Many people will enjoy this book but I need to like a character to enjoy their journey.
This is book one of a series and I understand the need to build the world and introduce the characters but i will not finish the series because i don't care what happens. ( )
  TeamDewey | Apr 9, 2014 |
In the age of multi-tasking, sitting down to relax and read is an endorphin rush much like I experience shortly after a Lindt Lindor truffle explodes across the back of my palate. However, that heady endorphin high quickly recedes into an adrenaline blast of terror when I discover that the opening page is a compendium of information that keeps tabs on who is who, where is where, and good-god can I just start reading, please? However, once I started this high fantasy by Morgan Rhodes, I luckily found myself engaged and lost to an action-packed story, only occasionally stopping to go, “Wait. What? Who the hell is that?” then flipping to the front for a quick refresher course in the genealogy of Mythica, the land created by Rhodes.
Said land is divided into three kingdoms and of course, war and intrigue is a’ coming. The multiple young characters are versatile in their quirks, qualities and genders, and I had fun chasing them around the countryside as their kingdoms fell apart. The setting/era was similar to titles such as Throne of Glass and Grave Mercy, but young female assassins weren’t woven into the fabric of this particular tale. There was still plenty of love, blood, and mayhem, though, to keep me occupied.
Considering the story was fantasy, I appreciated the fact that it didn’t delve into a long, boring outline of some new religion; the focus stayed on the characters. However, I think the belief system will probably be tackled in the next installment, Rebel Spring which arrives in book stores December 3, 2013. The only stumble I noticed in the writing was the author bouncing back and forth between modern phrasing and the old, stilted language of yore. Hopefully that, and a simpler character key in the front, will accompany the sequel, hence, keeping my endorphin levels exactly where they should be—on a chocolate high. ( )
  ChocolitChick | Mar 9, 2014 |
I'll admit, I had some serious doubts when I first heard about this young adult novel styled as an epic fantasy. I'm more of an adult fiction reader, so when I think about epic fantasy I can't help but picture vast sweeping sagas in big fat tomes, and I have no doubt it was this bias making me skeptical as I eyed this relatively thin volume.

So you can imagine my surprise when it turned out I quite enjoyed this book. Still, I did don my YA hat as I was thinking about how to rate and review it. And furthermore, you should know that any time anyone anywhere compares anything to George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire, I take it with a grain of salt. On several levels, I suppose I can understand the reasons for some of the comparisons, or why a story like this would appeal to fans of Game of Thrones. And yet, to date I've never actually encountered anything else quite like Martin's epic series and I didn't anticipate it would happen now.

As such, you could say I went into Falling Kingdoms with a realistic outlook, along with an expectation for some of the usual YA trappings and perhaps a more delicate, dialed-down version of my beloved epic fantasy tropes. But putting it like that would also be doing this book a great injustice, because it also turned out to be a deeper and more intricate reading experience than thought. Despite having a central cast of mostly teenagers, some of the more mature and darker themes also took me by surprise.

The scope of the story was certainly extensive and far-reaching enough for my tastes; here we have a land where the rulers of three separate kingdoms are locked in a bitter struggle for power, thus creating a hotbed for intrigue, conspiracy, scandal and all that good stuff. I wasn't expecting to see too much complexity, and indeed, the plot felt strained in certain places, I found myself questioning character motivations a lot, and some of the world building and story elements were lighter than what I'm accustomed to. And yet, when I look at the overall big picture, I was quite impressed with what I saw. It's a lot more than I'd hoped to find in a YA novel, that's for sure.

In a sense, this book reads exactly as it is described: an epic fantasy for teens. Since that was how I approached it, I thought it delivered everything that was promised and much more besides. If anything, the plot's overall simplicity and straightforward nature of the narrative actually work in the novel's favor. It's very accessible, easy to get into even if you aren't an epic fantasy reader, and the story is just layered enough to be interesting but not confusing or overwhelming.

Falling Kingdoms proved to be a highly enjoyable read for me. Keeping in mind it is a YA novel, it's probably not ideal if you're looking for a more powerful, substantial epic fantasy, but I had a lot of fun nonetheless. I'm actually really looking forward to starting the new book soon. ( )
  stefferoo | Feb 17, 2014 |
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Book description
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?
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"A fantasy about three kingdoms on the brink of war and the destiny of one princess"--Provided by publisher.

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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