Thursday, December 12, 2013

Review: Rebel Spring by Morgan Rhodes

Thursday, December 12, 2013 with 3 comments
Title: Rebel Spring
Author: Morgan Rhodes (aka Michelle Rowan)
Series: Falling Kingdoms, book #2
Publisher: Razorbill
Publication Date: December 3, 2013
Source: ARC received from publisher
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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Love, power, and magic collide with war in the second book of the Falling Kingdoms series.

Auranos has fallen and the three kingdoms—Auranos, Limeros, and Paelsia—are now united as one country called Mytica. But still, magic beckons, and with it the chance to rule not just Mytica, but the world...

When the evil King Gaius announces that a road is to be built into the Forbidden Mountains, formally linking all of Mytica together, he sets off a chain of events that will forever change the face of this land, forcing Cleo the dethroned princess, Magnus the reluctant heir, Lucia the haunted sorceress, and Jonas the desperate rebel to take steps they never could have imagined.

I went into Rebel Spring with rather subdued expectations thanks to my experience with Falling Kingdoms. I like the overall premise of the series, and I can appreciate that it lives up to being called the "Game of Thrones of YA". ( not get attached to anyone.)  But the world, the three kingdoms, haven't coalesced enough for me to fully enjoy the story yet.

As with another of my recent fantasy reads, this story appears to just hover on the surface of the pages.  I need to be thrust into the thick of things when it comes to fantasy, to discover all the hidden depths and secrets of the world right along with the characters.  And with this series, I feel like everything I "learned" in this sequel, I'd already figured out halfway through the first book.  There really just wasn't all that much plot advancement in this novel, aside from what I'd already predicted would happen based on Falling Kingdoms.  I do not like my fantasy to be predictable...that's what makes it so fantastic!  Take the mystery out of the story and I'm just bored, bored, bored.

And I still can't connect with any of these characters.  As I've said before, I don't need to empathize with the characters or feel like we're kindred spirits, but I should at least like them.  The only character I really like so far is Jonas, and he's the most radical, impulsive one of the lot.  Normally, his character would annoy me to no end, but considering the rest of the cast, and considering what he's survived already, he's the one I see making it to the finish line, so to speak, and my money's on him.

I will admit that the characters themselves are all very unique, with their hidden agendas and motivations, even if I don't really like them all that much.  The multiple perspectives is probably partly to blame for that, though. This particular method of storytelling just offers up too much information for me, leading to a lot of conjecture and theorizing on my part. That's all well and good when I'm thrown for a loop time and again, but even I don't like to be right all the time.

Suffice it to say, I'm not having as much fun with this series as I'd initially hoped.  The books both have some seriously awesome covers, and on that basis alone, I'd probably find it necessary to add them to my collection.  But if we're strictly speaking about what's between the covers, I'd have to say these are the kind of books that I'd probably borrow instead. They're definitely worth a read -- and probably a re-read before you pick up each subsequent installment -- but they're not the books that would immediately come to mind if I was jonesin' for a fantasy fix.

GIF it to me straight:
The only thing even remotely shocking was the death toll.

About the author:

Morgan Rhodes lives in Ontario, Canada. As a child, she always wanted to be a princess -- the kind that knows how to wield a sharp sword to help save both kingdoms and princes from fire-breathing dragons and dark wizards. Instead, she became a writer, which is just as good and much less dangerous. Along with writing, Morgan enjoys photography, travel, reality TV, and is an extremely picky, yet voracious reader of all kinds of books. Under another pen name, she’s a national bestselling author of many paranormal novels. Falling Kingdoms is her first high fantasy.

Find Morgan:

WebsiteTwitter | FacebookGoodreads


  1. Aw, sorry you didn't enjoy this one all that much. I liked it but no love here either. I like the multiple POVs but I totally agree that nothing was shocking--honestly the death toll didn't even hit me because I went into to it expecting it. Do you think you'll try the last book? I will admit the covers are so pretty it does make me like them more. Great review!

  2. I STILL have my ARC of Falling Kingdoms (a giveaway item, not from the publisher at least) on my shelf with a little TBR sticker on the front. I've heard such varying reactions to it and feel even less motivated to read it now that you say the 2nd one doesn't improve things much. And how did I not know about this death toll thing? That actually makes me a bit more intrigued to start the series. "As I've said before, I don't need to empathize with the characters or feel like we're kindred spirits, but I should at least like them" is my common frustration in books, I feel ya!

  3. I'm skipping right over the review to see the stars and gif and I'm a little sad. I loved the first book. I'm looking forward to this sequel still though and I'm super nervous for who will die. It was obvious in the first she had no hesitation to kill anyone you might have grown to love.


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