*I received a free ecopy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.*
To put it simply, this book might be for some people, but it just really wasn’t for me.
See, the blurb alludes to all these dark things—slavery, black markets, human trafficking, poverty, a dystopian society—and, of course, romance. So I thought it was going to be a nice semi-dark, gritty, sci-fi romance.
Unfortunately, there was nothing gritty about it.
All the heavy issues I mentioned above were glossed over, and the story was just a light and fluffy romance with lots of swoony inner monologues and speeches and lots of angst that honestly didn’t feel very genuine or real to me because, again, all the heavy stuff was kind of nowhere to be found. It was mentioned a lot, but it was just there as backstory, and I never actually felt any emotion from it. Even when Sophelia was given seven lashes with a belt in the beginning, I could’ve been reading about someone eating dinner for all that I felt.
And kind of going along with the light romance thing, both characters were too perfectly imperfect for my taste, the kind that have “flaws” but not real flaws. Sophelia also wasn’t as tough as I would have expected after going through the hardships she apparently went through.
Then there was the ending. And by ending, I mean the story cut off suddenly with no resolution to anything at all. And that is pretty much the one thing almost guaranteed to make me angry about a book. I don’t even mind cliffhangers as long as, before the cliffhanger, there’s a climax and some sort of wrap up to the goal/questions raised in that individual book. But this had no resolution, and, to tell you the truth, I’m actually not even sure what the goal was.
There were also a few minor things, the kind that don’t ruin a story and you overlook if you love the book but that irk you if you don’t:
– I lost count of how many time Maxton used his fingers to lift Sophelia’s chin and make her look at him. It didn’t come across as sweet to me. It came across as him manhandling her.
– The prologue was entirely unnecessary and turned me off right away. It was just a scene from later in the book copied and pasted into the beginning.
– I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to like Sophelia’s mother or not because I actually agreed with the militia man. If she loved Sophelia so much, why would she purposely do something unnecessary when she knew it would cause her daughter to end up becoming an orphan and made into a slave? Maybe there’s more to the story, but, as I said, the book cut off before anything was explained.
But, though the writing could use bit of tightening up, it seemed about on par with the other fluffy romances I’ve read. So if you like swoony [clean] romance with perfectly imperfect characters and don’t like graphic, dark stuff that will bring you down, you might like it. But if you’re looking for something gritty with truly flawed characters, this won’t be for you.
Readers who like fairly light and fluffy, clean romances and don't mind cliffhanger/serial-type endings.