Thursday, August 20, 2015

Legacy Of Kings by Eleanor Herman

Legacy Of Kings by Eleanor Herman
Release Date - August 18,  2015
Publisher Website - Harlequin Teen
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages - 384 pages
My Rating - 5/5
**obtained from publisher for an honest review**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
Imagine a time when the gods turn a blind eye to the agony of men, when the last of the hellions roam the plains and evil stirs beyond the edges of the map. A time when cities burn, and in their ashes, empires rise.

Alexander, Macedonia’s sixteen-year-old heir, is on the brink of discovering his fated role in conquering the known world but finds himself drawn to newcomer Katerina, who must navigate the dark secrets of court life while hiding her own mission: kill the Queen. But Kat’s first love, Jacob, will go to unthinkable lengths to win her, even if it means competing for her heart with Hephaestion, a murderer sheltered by the prince. And far across the sea, Zofia, a Persian princess and Alexander’s unmet fiancée, wants to alter her destiny by seeking the famed and deadly Spirit Eaters.

Weaving fantasy with the salacious and fascinating details of real history, New York Times bestselling author Eleanor Herman reimagines the greatest emperor the world has ever known: Alexander the Great, in the first book of the Blood of Gods and Royals series. 
I am immediately intrigued by anything inspired by true events and people. Add in the historical element and magic and Legacy of Kings was instantly on my radar. A sprawling, splashy beginning to a series that captures a young man on the brink of greatness.

This is an ambitious novel, and Eleanor Herman executes it masterfully. She uses the multiple points of view to her advantage and the third person narrative to widen the story, something a different writing choice would have limited. It's a story that is larger in scope, and one that is going to unravel at a slower pace to allow the rich details, and character development to happen. It is a writing style that requires patience while you get used to it, but the story is enough to suck you in and offers a rewarding reading experience in the end.

The large cast of characters is a blessing and a curse. The large scope story requires it, but allowing the reader to get to know these characters is much harder. I hope that character development, motivation, and story arc are the focus going forward in the series. There was enough here to hold my interest, but I felt some of the characters could benefit from expanding them further. The writing style itself doesn't lend itself to connecting with the characters, but Eleanor manages to make you care about a lot of them which speaks to her talent.

Alexander shines brightly in the spotlight. The golden boy who will eventually become Alexander the Great. Sparks of his military cunning are evident in this novel and it will be fascinating to see his character manoeuvre into the man we know he becomes. This connections he forges are the sharpest emotional parts of the story. Those who love the romance aspect will find plenty of 'ship worthy' moments and may find yourself shipping the less obvious choices more than a little (totally looking at you Hephastian and Alexander). Romance, however, is not the focus of this story. The ever pressing danger to Macedon, and the increasing stakes, don't allow for much breathing room and that is where the focus is. The other characters, particularly the female ones, are fierce, flawed, and mesmerizing. I appreciated the attention paid to fleshing out the female characters of the story who have an urgency all their own.

The story itself is engaging. You have romance, betrayal, politics, and war all happening at once. Swirling around it all is magic and the tantalizing promise of what it could do. It's a true fantasy in that many of the tropes are there and used to great affect. It's been compared to Game of Thrones and that comparison stands in my opinion. It's a fight for a crown in a magic infused setting and filled with characters who are just beginning their epic journey. Those who love these larger, slower burn, but entirely rewarding stories will devour this. This will be their new obsession and I count myself part of this group.

Offering up a delicious blend of a historical setting and fantasy, this novel is only a tease of what this series could be. A brilliant premise that is only going to get better as the world and it's characters continue to grow. Expect to hear lots about this buzzy novel because I have a feeling it's going to be one everybody is talking about.

1 comment:

  1. This book has really captured my attention and I can't wait to start reading it. I'm really glad to hear that Eleanor is able to take on this ambitious story and that it works. Thanks for the review!!!


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