Thursday, January 28, 2016

7 Reasons Why I Didn't Like The Kiss of Deception

by Mary E. Pearson
Series: The Remnant Chronicles #1
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Publication date: July 8, 2014
Published by: Henry Holt
Hardcover, 486 pages
My rating: 2/5 ★
A princess must find her place in a reborn world.

She flees on her wedding day. She steals ancient documents from the Chancellor's secret collection. She is pursued by bounty hunters sent by her own father. She is Princess Lia, seventeen, First Daughter of the House of Morrighan.

The Kingdom of Morrighan is steeped in tradition and the stories of a bygone world, but some traditions Lia can't abide. Like having to marry someone she's never met to secure a political alliance.

Fed up and ready for a new life, Lia flees to a distant village on the morning of her wedding. She settles in among the common folk, intrigued when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deceptions swirl and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—secrets that may unravel her world—even as she feels herself falling in love.
I'm going to warn you. There is a whole lot of negativity ahead. I don't want to offend anyone, so please don't take any of this personal if The Kiss of Deception is your favorite book ever. It just wasn't the right book for me, and that makes me sad. It didn't keep my interest and unlike all the raving reviews I've seen so far, I'm going to talk about all the things that bothered me about this book.
  • THE MAIN CHARACTER. I did not like Lia. She was na├»ve, arrogant and selfish; add to that the most dumbest actions and thoughts ever, and you've got yourself a protagonist that I just couldn't stand. It was impossible to connect to her and most of all, I couldn't understand her relationships with any of the other characters. Everything just felt off.
  • THE LOVE TRIANGLE. Yes, no one likes love triangles, me included. But usually, I don't mind them that much if I can at least see the appeal of both love interests. Here? no. I felt like the author wanted the whole thing to be very subtle, which is fine, but for me it just ended up being weird, especially considering my next point. 
  • THE BORING LOVE INTEREST. Rafe was the most tedious person I have ever read about. Honestly, I could not see the appeal. Maybe that had to do with the fact that I didn't even get to know him, like, at all. All the conversations he supposedly had with Lia were only mentioned and hardly any were actually written out, which made it impossible for me to get an idea of what kind of person he is. Mostly, it was just described that he had (for some mysterious reason) been attracted to Lia from the very first moment he laid eyes on her (come on, love triangle and instalove??) and then next thing you know, they are madly in love and he is willing to risk everything for her. What? 
  • ALL THE INSTALOVE. Yes, you guessed it, the second guy also happened to be in love with Lia from day one. While I found Kaden more interesting and intriguing than Rafe, he was still pretty boring and stereotypical most of the time. I would like to learn more about his personality and past, though, which is more than I can say about anyone else in the story, so I guess he was my favorite. But back to the romance. The worst part about it isn't even that Rafe and Kaden both seemed to have fallen madly in love with Lia for no reason right from the start, but even at the end of the book I couldn't see why they were even interested in her. It all made no sense. 
  • NOT EVEN THE FRIENDSHIPS SEEMED GENUINE. Pauline is Lia's supposed best friend. While she seemed like a sweet girl, I'm not going to act like I know anything about her. Her friendship with Lia didn't feel at all genuine and - again - I couldn't really understand it. What angered me most is that Lia didn't tell her the most important news but rather lied to her. I absolutely hate when people lie to each other under the pretense of wanting to protect them. It just doesn't make sense. 
  • THE WRITING DIDN'T WORK FOR ME. Pearson's writing just wasn't for me, and I think it's the main reason for all the above mentioned dislike. It was all so very descriptive, but not in a way that worked for me. There was by far not enough dialogue, for example. Most of the parts where the characters got to know each other, and where I as a reader would've been able to learn more about them, were just briefly mentioned or summarized. No details, nothing. Instead, it all focused very much on Lia and her thinking, which of course didn't help because her reasoning annoyed me 99% of the time. 
  • NOTHING HAPPENED. Honestly, this is a 500 page book, and I could summarize the entire plot in about five sentences. I kept hoping for the story to finally pick up but it all went at a snail's pace. I wish the book would have focused more on developing the relationships and such. Just a little more on the other characters. Lia was so self-centered, there was almost no room for anyone else. There was also only very little room for world building. I mean, this whole magic aspect still doesn't make any sense and other than some excerpts from Vendan texts, and some rare mention of Morrighese stories, we don't know anything about the world's history. I realize there are two more books in the story, but I would've just needed a little more in the first book to spark my interest.
To end this rant, I want to say that it wasn't all bad, it really wasn't. I can totally see other people enjoying the book, but it just wasn't for me. I don't understand the hype and it definitely didn't live up to my expectations.

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