Friday, February 10, 2017

Book Review: Long May She Reign

 Title: Long May She Reign
Author: Rhiannon Thomas
Genre: Young Adult | Alternative History | Mystery
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: February 21, 2017
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher

Freya was never meant be queen. Twenty third in line to the throne, she never dreamed of a life in the palace, and would much rather research in her laboratory than participate in the intrigues of court. However, when an extravagant banquet turns deadly and the king and those closest to him are poisoned, Freya suddenly finds herself on the throne.
Freya may have escaped the massacre, but she is far from safe. The nobles don’t respect her, her councillors want to control her, and with the mystery of who killed the king still unsolved, Freya knows that a single mistake could cost her the kingdom – and her life.
Freya is determined to survive, and that means uncovering the murderers herself. Until then, she can’t trust anyone. Not her advisors. Not the king’s dashing and enigmatic illegitimate son. Not even her own father, who always wanted the best for her, but also wanted more power for himself.
As Freya’s enemies close in and her loyalties are tested, she must decide if she is ready to rule and, if so, how far she is willing to go to keep the crown (goodreads)

Long May She Reign was a fun mystery that skimmed on the characterization. 
Plot: On the night of a large court ball, Freya and her best friend sneak away to Freya's lab to continue her experiments. A few hours later, her frantic father tells her that everyone in court is dead and that she is the new monarch. With a mass murderer on the loose and an unstable kingdom, Freya has a lot on her hands. 

At the end of the day, Long May She Reign was a fun novel. There were a lot of mini twists that helped shift the suspicion on other characters and small developments that kept me turning pages. Despite being over 400 pages, I managed to read this one in less than a day because it was intriguing and an easy read. It's rather fast-paced which made this so easy to finish in a day. 

This is a prime-example of why 3-star reviews are so impossible. Overall, Long May She Reign was a nice read, I have no major complaints nor was there anything that took my breath away so I don't really feel like I'm providing an adequate amount of feedback. 

Characters: Freya was quirky and awkward, all that you would expect from a 16-year-old girl. As the 26th person in line for the throne, she didn't expect to have to rule a kingdom and spent her time advancing in science. Freya felt real; her awkward interactions trying to decide what was best for her kingdom was genuine and well written.

There was a bit of character-overload in this book because so many people influence Freya. At times, it was hard to keep track of all of these characters and most of them felt like they were throw-away characters - on the page just to be a possible murder suspect with no development. None of the characters had any other qualities besides being a murder suspect which lessened my enjoyment as a character-driven reader. 

Worldbuilding: Long May She Reign was alternative history that didn't explore its settings as much as I had hoped. Freya was essentially locked up in a tower to keep safe and barely got to explore her kingdom. There were key locations that she had to travel to in order to move the story along, but there was nothing definitive to make this world familiar or memorable for me. 

Short N Sweet: Long May She Reign is an enjoyable read, but nothing to write home about. 


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