I… have been reading some really good books. I don’t even feel guilty (okay, I do, vaguely) about not putting up my August new releases post because I’ve just Been Reading. And now I’ve to
gush talk about them, possibly slightly incoherently, but, well.
First was a bit of a glom for new-to-me author Cinda Williams Chima. I’ve heard good things about her writing, and have had the first book of her Seven Realms YA fantasy series on my Kindle for ages. But I was never quite in the right mood for it – and still wasn’t really. It was just that I had a three hour train journey and wanted some fantasy. So I chose a book at random, and I’ll be honest – THE DEMON KING didn’t grab me from the start. I thought the first chapters were inclined towards over-exposition and was concerned that this would be fantasy dumbed-down for the teen market. The alternating POVs struck me as a rather tired narrative device, the characters felt a bit generic-fantasy archetype (the streetwise ex-thief turned good, the rebellious princess, etc etc…), and the dreaded love triangle threatened.
I know. Thank goodness for that three-hour journey because I continued reading.
And somehow I got sucked in. The characters grew up and became three-dimensional – I liked them, I rooted for them, and I wanted them to win through even though it felt impossible at times. The stakes for Raisa, Han, Dancer, Amon, Cat, and well, so many others, became higher over the course of the series and I was totally invested in the outcome. The romance (of course there was romance) was of the sort that came ever so slowly to the boil and was oh-so-satisfying. I surfaced from the world of the Seven Realms a while later, having gulped down the entire quartet in around three days. It’s the sort of series where midway through the final book, I almost didn’t want to finish it because that would have meant the story was over.
So if you’re in the mood for fantasy with a healthy mix of court intrigue, magic, and romance, you could do worse than to check out this series. And I need to have a look at Cinda Williams Chima’s other series, obviously.
And that’s not all.
I finally caved and bought Rainbow Rowell‘s FANGIRL after the numerous fangirl (sorry) squeeing reviews about her books (and also because of the current bargain-ish price of £1.59 for the Kindle edition on Amazon UK). Plus I needed to switch genres as I suspected any other fantasy would pale compared to the Seven Realms books at the moment.
All I’m going to say is that I only put down FANGIRL last night because it was 2am and I had a 9am meeting this morning. So excuse me as I’ve to find out how Cath is doing…
*You may have noticed I’ve run out of inspiration when it comes to blog post titles.