I know it took me FOREVER to get through this book (I was super busy and ditched it for a few weeks to read other books), but I did finish it and am reviewing it as part of my monthly TBR (sorry the review is posted so late).
Author: Robin LaFevers
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy/Historical Fiction
Pg. #: 576
Rating: *** (three stars)
*sigh* I wanted action. I wanted violence. I wanted assassins. I found that the book focused much more on "games of love and intrigue", as the back cover quotes. That's not to say I didn't enjoy the book overall. Some parts were very dark and intriguing and I liked that quite a lot.
Let's talk about characters. I like Ismae, though sometimes she annoyed me in the fact that she spent ages simply wandering the castle and eavesdropping. Duval was fine, I neither liked him nor disliked him, he just settled into that gray region. I did however like the Duchess (Anne) and thought Sybella was an intriguing character, which makes me very excited to read Dark Triumph!
One thing I did really enjoy was the feel of the book. LaFevers did an awesome job of portraying the time period and setting of Brittany. I am really enjoying books of this era right now, so I loved the mood and feel of the book. The politics of the book and the Duchess's situation was obviously desperate and I found it interesting to see what their solution might be. That said, the characters in political positions were extremely confusing. I always mixed up the regents and ambassadors and everything.
Overall, yes, I did enjoy the book. I just felt like the book had too little happening for 500+ pages. The progression was too slow for me and I wanted more action for sure. There were only one or two violent action scenes. I would recommend this book for people who like historical romance and less for people who want a historical adventure with a twist.