Saturday, February 18, 2017

Book Review (ARC) | Blood Rose Rebellion by Rosalyn Eves

Title: Blood Rose Rebellion
Author: Rosalyn Eves
Publication: March 28th 2017 by Knopf Books for Young Readers
Series: First in a Trilogy
Pages: 416
Genre: YA Historical Fantasy
Copy: ARC provided by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Summary: The thrilling first book in a YA fantasy trilogy for fans of Red Queen. In a world where social prestige derives from a trifecta of blood, money, and magic, one girl has the ability to break the spell that holds the social order in place.

Sixteen-year-old Anna Arden is barred from society by a defect of blood. Though her family is part of the Luminate, powerful users of magic, she is Barren, unable to perform the simplest spells. Anna would do anything to belong. But her fate takes another course when, after inadvertently breaking her sister’s debutante spell—an important chance for a highborn young woman to show her prowess with magic—Anna finds herself exiled to her family’s once powerful but now crumbling native Hungary.

Her life might well be over.

In Hungary, Anna discovers that nothing is quite as it seems. Not the people around her, from her aloof cousin Noémi to the fierce and handsome Romani Gábor. Not the society she’s known all her life, for discontent with the Luminate is sweeping the land. And not her lack of magic. Isolated from the only world she cares about, Anna still can’t seem to stop herself from breaking spells.

As rebellion spreads across the region, Anna’s unique ability becomes the catalyst everyone is seeking. In the company of nobles, revolutionaries, and Romanies, Anna must choose: deny her unique power and cling to the life she’s always wanted, or embrace her ability and change that world forever.

So when I read the summary for this book, I read "YA fantasy" and got excited.  However, what the summary fails to mention is that this isn't just fantasy.  Oh, no.  It's historical fantasy.  Some of you just started jumping up and down in your seats, but if you're anything like me, you just felt a wave of disappointment.  I know, I know it's bad to judge a book like this, but I just don't like historical fiction.  Or historical nonfiction.  Just history in general.  There have been a few exceptions, but overall, I just don't like books set in previous time periods (this book is set in the mid-1800s).

Like I said, though, there have been some exceptions, so I decided to forge ahead and try to like this book.  And I almost did.  Kind of.  Okay, so let's just get into some of the pros of this book.

The writing is beautiful.  There's some lovely imagery going on, and the world-building is on-point.  There's magic and magical creatures.  Not gonna lie, the first half of the book is pretty slow.  However, the last half makes up for it with some nail-biting action!

Another thing that I enjoyed is that it's set in England, specifically Hungary.  There were some German phrases and culture thrown in there, and a lot of the real history from this region and time period was woven in.  Again, I feel like the history buffs of the world will enjoy this aspect a lot more.  AND there's a pronunciation guide, so you're not pronouncing the German wrong the entire book.

Overall, this is a good book.  It's just not for me.  If I would have known it was historical fantasy, I probably never would have picked it up.  Do I regret reading it?  No.  Will I read the second book.  Probably not.  It really all comes down to if this is your type of book or if it's not.

Do you guys like historical fiction/fantasy?  Are you going to give this book a try?  Let me know in the comments!