Thursday, September 17, 2015

Review: Gathering Darkness by Morgan Rhodes

Gathering Darkness
(Falling Kingdoms #3)
Publication Date: December 9, 2014
Hardcover, 407 pages, Razorbill
Genres: YA, Fantasy

Love, vengeance, and greed spark a deadly quest for magic in the third book of the Falling Kingdoms series

Prince Magnus has just witnessed torture, death, and miracles during the bloody confrontation that decimated the rebel forces. Now he must choose between family and justice as his father, the cruel King Gaius, sets out to conquer all of Mytica. All Gaius needs now are the Kindred—the four elemental crystals that give godlike powers to their owner. But the King of Blood is not the only one hunting for this ancient, storied magic. . . .

THE KRAESHIANS join the hunt. Ashur and Amara, the royal siblings from the wealthy kingdom across the Silver Sea, charm and manipulate their way to the Kindred, proving to be more ruthless than perhaps even the King of Blood himself.

THE REBELS forge ahead. Princess Cleo and vengeful Jonas lead them, slaying with sweetness, skill, and a secret that can control Lucia’s overpowering magic—all so they can use the Kindred to win back their fallen kingdoms.

THE WATCHERS follow Melenia out of the Sanctuary. They ally in the flesh with King Gaius, who vows to use Lucia’s powers to unveil the Kindred.

The only certainty in these dark times is that whoever finds the magic first will control the fate of Mytica. . . . but the four element gods of the Kindred have other plans.

My Review

Things are happening in this book, but at the same time, nothing has really happened. ‘Cause that totally makes sense, right?

The gang is all back and ready to keep doing what they’re doing in this third book of the Falling Kingdoms series. Jonas is trying and failing to save people. Cleo is failing to be spy-worthy. Magnus is angry at the world. And Lucia is continuing to make me hate her.

Okay, so the characters of this series actually have a lot more going on than what I just mentioned, but if you’re looking for the quick and dirty version of their character summaries, then that’s it. However, the characters have gone through some pivotal changes and I think they really express how confused they all are in their own twisted ways. I still hate Lucia, though. She’s just selfish and annoying. Who’s with me? Her chapters and Alexius’ are always the longest to read. This could also be because I just don’t like the whole Watcher and magic plotline. I know, totally weird that I hate the magic system in a fantasy series, but I feel like the other non-magic characters are just so much more entertaining and dynamic. I think Rhodes has the magical characters lean a little too much on their powers and thus, she doesn’t fully develop their characters in a way that has me enjoying their personalities.

Oh, and before I forget, I totally ship Cleo and Magnus. Cleo isn’t my favorite female character in the series (I think that title would be bestowed upon Lysandra), but she is pretty funny and sassy and I really think Magnus needs that in his life. Also, I didn’t like the addition of the Kraeshians into the story. Oh! I guess I should take that back. I love Ashur and Nic’s storyline. Sort of. (Damn you, Morgan Rhodes!) But I just don’t like how their kingdom has been added into the story. It makes the whole plot of the Mytica country seem petty and small since the kingdom across the sea is better and bigger and could squash Mytica like a bug. I want the stakes to feel like they’re high, like the whole world of Mytica has to survive, otherwise the world dies. Know what I mean?

As for the plot of the story, it was okay. I always feel like nothing really happens in these books, even though things most certainly do, just because there are so many different points of view and we only get 10 or so pages from that viewpoint. It makes it hard to really see how things have changed from the start to the finish of the novel—at least while you’re reading it. But, like I said, things did actually happen, probably more than anything’s ever happened in this series, and I really appreciate that we’re seeing some results.

All in all, this third book in the Falling Kingdoms world is full of fun and adventure and all you have to do is jump on in the bandwagon.

*Note: I purchased a copy of this book for myself. This in no way affected my opinion/review.

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