My rating: 2 of 5 stars
0-50% was 1/5
51-80% was 2/5
81-100% was 3.5/5
This review will contain spoilers so if that bothers you do not read on.
If the ratings are not clear to you all I mean is that I struggled to get into the book early on, but there was at least something compelling me to finish. Though none of the characters (especially Roselle) stood out to me there was something about the world that made me want to at least finish this book.
Unfortunately, this book did fall flat in some regards. There was very little world-building, very little character development, and a plot that sometimes lost its way. The actual events that happened didn’t really matter. What mattered was proving to the reader that Roselle was a worthy leader so in the following books the rebellion would make sense.
Unfortunately, I don’t think this book did a good job proving Roselle was a leader. It proved she’s capable of killing an army on her own when she wants, but for some reason is able to lose fights when it’s convenient for a male character (usually a love interest or an aspiring love interest) to comfort her. Oh, also the love interest felt incredibly forced at first, but I got over it because Hawthorne became interesting by the end of the book.
The main villain, or at least the man I assume to be the main villain doesn’t have much depth. He’s just evil for the sake of being evil.
There is also a war going on but we only actually see one war scene and it’s mostly Roselle tripping over corpses to see if anyone is alive. She’s never in any danger and even though it’s obvious she isn’t going to die, she never felt close to dying at any point throughout this book, even though many people want her dead. She was kind of an annoying main character because she was just perfect. She was attractive but didn’t know it, a weapons expert, and incredibly innocent and naive (like literally someone who justified killing guards but also nursed little animals back to health).
The best parts of the book were the descriptions of the advanced technology. The final three chapters were the most intriguing and did enough to make me curious about the rest of the series (as long as they remain on KU).
I hope the second book does a better job world building and also goes into more detail about the secondborn trials. I don’t care if it’s derivative of hunger games as it’s entertaining. It kept getting referenced throughout the book but we rarely saw it.
I do want to finish this on a positive so I will say Clifton Salloway was an interesting character. He was by far the most well developed and had the most intriguing story of the cast.