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Falling Kingdoms ~ Morgan Rhodes 

January 6, 2019

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Genre: Young Adult/Fantasy
Publisher: Razorbill
ISBN: 9781595145857
448 pages
Source: Barnes and Noble

“Power. It has always been a strong motivator for some. A quest for power – for ultimate power – is the reason behind most evils the world has witnessed.”

It took me a while to start this series. I have a hard time embracing series and books that have become wildly popular because I’ve been burned before (I see you, Caraval).

Falling Kingdoms didn’t disappoint, though.

The story is told through three different viewpoints, three different young people from three different kingdoms, hence the title.

As with so many fantasy stories, Falling Kingdoms exists as an allegory for our own human behavior, weaving in three distinct experiences into one, mirroring modern day politics, humanity, love, and destruction.

The destitute and desperate, run down Paelsia has been on a steep decline for generations, giving birth to scrappy revolutionary, Jonas. His path crosses Cleo, a sheltered, pampered princess from the ragingly successful (and very well hated) throne of Auranos. Through their short but unfortunately violent interaction, a chain of events spirals outward, catching Prince Magnus (of the deeply religious but somewhat sidelined kingdom of Limeros) in its wake.

As the book rolls forward, the three young leaders intersect and volley, creating their own alliances and conflicts quite under their parents’ noses.

The characters go in and out of being likable, which is somewhat understandable. They’re all stressed and they fall into one of two categories: privileged royal kids or rundown village kids who have lost everything. I tried to give everyone a little grace but there were still moments in which I got frustrated.

Still, the young adults are far more lovable than their older counterparts and all seem to question the mass amounts of backstabbing and bloodshed.

I’m so excited to see what the rest of the series holds. I’m going to try to pace myself because there are still more books to be published and I’ve burned myself before, ripping through series before the finale has hit.

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