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I Belong


Early Review: Blood Rose Rebellion by Roselyn Eves

Blood Rose RebellionTitle: Blood Rose Rebellion

Author: Rosalyn Eves

Genre: YA Historical Fantasy/Paranormal

Series: Blood Rose Rebellion (Book #1)

Publication Date: March 28, 2017

Format: Hardcover, 416 Pages

ISBN-10: 1101935995 (Knopf Doubleday)

ISBN-13: 978-1101935996 (Knopf Doubleday)

Reviewed by: Kristie

Synopsis:

The thrilling first book in a YA fantasy trilogy for fans of Red Queen. In a world where social prestige derives from a trifecta of blood, money, and magic, one girl has the ability to break the spell that holds the social order in place.

Sixteen-year-old Anna Arden is barred from society by a defect of blood. Though her family is part of the Luminate, powerful users of magic, she is Barren, unable to perform the simplest spells. Anna would do anything to belong. But her fate takes another course when, after inadvertently breaking her sister’s debutante spell—an important chance for a highborn young woman to show her prowess with magic—Anna finds herself exiled to her family’s once powerful but now crumbling native Hungary.

Her life might well be over.

In Hungary, Anna discovers that nothing is quite as it seems. Not the people around her, from her aloof cousin Noémi to the fierce and handsome Romani Gábor. Not the society she’s known all her life, for discontent with the Luminate is sweeping the land. And not her lack of magic. Isolated from the only world she cares about, Anna still can’t seem to stop herself from breaking spells.

As rebellion spreads across the region, Anna’s unique ability becomes the catalyst everyone is seeking. In the company of nobles, revolutionaries, and Romanies, Anna must choose: deny her unique power and cling to the life she’s always wanted, or embrace her ability and change that world forever.

Quick & Dirty: Dark, magical YA series with a fascinating premise but I ultimately couldn’t connect with the characters.

Opening Sentence: I did not set out to ruin my sister’s debut.

Excerpt: No

The Review:

Blood Rose Rebellion is a young adult novel set in the 1800s where only the elite and rich have magical powers. They have blocked off the power from the rest of the population through a magical spell but the general public does not realize that is the case. I was really looking forward to this book but I don’t think I was quite in the right head space to read this one. I had a hard time connecting to most of these characters but I did get invested in the ending. I wanted to know how Anna was going to put an end to the magical oppression.

Anna is from a Luminate family in England. As a Luminate, her family is rich and has access to magic but unfortunately for Anna when her time to gain her magic something terrible happens. Anna is Barren, which means she has no access to magic. In fact, she’s worse than Barren she causes magic to disrupt in her presence. When her sister is basically having her “Prom”/”Coming out” party which shows off her magic and how well she can perform it ensuring her place in society, Anna causes her sister’s magic to disrupt. Anna’s sister, mother and grandmother don’t like the mark of shame that Anna is putting on their family so they suggest she vacation in Hungary with her grandmother for a little while or until Catherine (Anna’s sister) finds a suitable husband. Before Anna leaves, she hears news of a possible unrest.

As Anna travels to Hungary, she takes the knowledge that she has just learned about the unrest and listens to how people talk. They aren’t happy with the current situation with the Luminate and they hate the Circle who enforce magic rules. When the rebels learn of Anna’s “powers” they think she could be the tool to break the Binding and allow magic to roam freely.

I think my one issue with this novel is that Anna is being used by everyone especially those who want the Binding broke. Then those who want to make sure she doesn’t break it also try to make bargains with her or just straight out threaten to kill her. At some point she realizes that they are using her but she really doesn’t dwell on it. She gets to a breaking point where it seems like it is her decision but she really never had a choice.

Anna is one of those teenagers where none of it is her fault, if so and so hadn’t have done this then I wouldn’t have done that. She does start to learn some life lessons after a while but it takes her some time. She is faced with a decision that I would never hope to make. Anna’s two cousins in Hungary are a bit of a strange mix. Mátayás doesn’t want to be like his father worthless but he’s well on his way with drinking and carousing, enough so that he kisses Anna and I’m still not sure if that was gross or not. (I couldn’t remember how closely they were related.) Noemi is a bit of a tattle-tale because she doesn’t want Anna in trouble. Gábor is the hot Romani that Anna falls for. He has his own set of issues but he knows that Anna shouldn’t bring down the Binding.

There are a lot of Hungarian words which was kind of fun. Some of the words were explained but not all of them. I didn’t have an index to look up those words but I do like it when authors incorporate other languages and cultures into their books. Also, there is a lot of politics. Unfortunately, I don’t know Hungarian history like I wish I did so I’m not sure how accurate it is but the author did mention she took liberties with it.

Overall, this book didn’t hook me like I wish it had. Although, I am really intrigued by the ending and would like to see where that goes. Like I said, my head wasn’t in a good spot when I read this so I would still recommend this one for people who really like the historical paranormal aspect. I do like how it gave us a different history.

Notable Scene:

Gábor took two steps toward me, crushed me to his chest—and kissed me. Hard.

Again that flame gusted into life inside of me. I pushed it down, appalled at my own reaction, and struggles free. My embarrassed glance flickered toward Izidora, who only grinned.

Was there something in the water here? First Mátayás, now this stranger. And even I seemed inflicted by some peculiar madness.

Blood Rose Rebellion Series:

1. Blood Rose Rebellion

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FTC Advisory: Knopf Books for Young Readers provided me with a copy of Blood Rose Rebellion. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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