Thursday, January 18, 2018

Book Review: Reign of the Fallen

Title: Reign of the Fallen (Reign of the Fallen #1)
Author: Sarah Glenn Marsh
Genre: Young Adult | Fantasy | Magic
Publisher: Razorbill

Publication Date: January 23, 2018
Source: Publisher
Format: eARC

Odessa is one of Karthia's master necromancers, catering to the kingdom's ruling Dead. Whenever a noble dies, it's Odessa's job to raise them by retrieving their souls from a dreamy and dangerous shadow world called the Deadlands. But there is a cost to being raised--the Dead must remain shrouded, or risk transforming into zombie-like monsters known as Shades. If even a hint of flesh is exposed, the grotesque transformation will begin.
A dramatic uptick in Shade attacks raises suspicions and fears among Odessa's necromancer community. Soon a crushing loss of one of their own reveals a disturbing conspiracy: someone is intentionally creating Shades by tearing shrouds from the Dead--and training them to attack. Odessa is faced with a terrifying question: What if her necromancer's magic is the weapon that brings Karthia to its knees (goodreads)?


Reign of the Fallen was exciting but missing some key character and world development. 
Plot: Reign of the Fallen took place in a world where individuals were blessed with powers based on their god. There were necromancers, beast masters, and those who didn't have any special powers. The necromancers were most sought out because they had the power to bring the world of the living - of course for a price. 

Unsurprisingly, Reign of the Fallen was nonstop action which made it hard for me to put down. The pacing was just right and left just enough open to be explored in the next installment(s). While that's all good, I found the plot to be extremely predictable. I guessed the conspiracy and waited impatiently for Odessa to catch up with the rest of us. Once the conspiracy came to light, it was too easy for Odessa to piece the puzzle together, from a few choice interactions in the past. 

Characters: I enjoyed Odessa because she was flawed and emotional. Her responses weren't always logical, but they made her human and I loved that she wasn't afraid to be vulnerable. I was; however, expecting more from the secondary characters. I was expecting a crew as tight as the Dregs, but unfortunately, I found all of the other characters to be non-existent. In all of their interactions, Marsh would make reference to how close their relationships were, but I never saw how close they were in present interactions, and that was the most disappointing. 

There was a romance, and it was great how sexually open how all of the characters were. I wanted to love the romance, but it was too obvious too quickly. There were moments of intense blushing and long stares and that doesn't sell a romance for me. 

Worldbuilding: Karthia was a fascinating world, I mean the motto was that change was bad! I wanted to learn so much more about the world than was actually given. I'm happy that there is plenty of potential for future books, but all of this open-endedness just made the book feel incomplete. 

Short N Sweet: Reign of the Fallen will be a hit for many action-oriented readers, I just wanted more. 

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