The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson
Pages: paperback 486 pages
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Synopsis: In a society steeped in tradition, Princess Lia’s life follows a preordained course. As First Daughter, she is expected to have the revered gift of sight—but she doesn’t—and she knows her parents are perpetrating a sham when they arrange her marriage to secure an alliance with a neighboring kingdom—to a prince she has never met.
On the morning of her wedding, Lia flees to a distant village. She settles into a new life, hopeful when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deception abounds, and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—even as she finds herself falling in love.
The Kiss of Deception is the first book in Mary E. Pearson’s Remnant Chronicles. (goodreads)
Two stars. Yes. That’s all I can give it, but I think I have valid reasons for the low rating.
First, the synopsis makes it sound like it has some potential. And it did have some potential. But the book really went nowhere. A lot more could have happened in 500 pages. Or just cut out a ton and make the book 250 pages. It starts with her wedding day that she runs away from. She angry that she never met the prince before hand. She’s angry that she has to be forced to marry someone when her brothers get to pick their spouse. So she runs away. And for the next 300 pages nothing happens with that. She just is living at a tavern, and that’s it.
Words are being read, but plot is going NOWHERE.
During those 300 pages, we are introduced to the Prince and the Assassin. BUT the author doesn’t want you to know which is which. She calls one Kaden and one Rafe and gives a brief description of each when they are first introduced. And I mean brief. And that’s it. For the next 300 pages we think we know which is which but she calls them by their names sometime and by their profession another time and leaves you wondering what’s really going on. And it’s one scene with boy 1, one scene with boy 2, alternating back and forth. Add some misunderstandings (deception, I suppose,) a semi-romantic moment here and there, and the talk of something maybe happening and you have 300 pages of NOTHING HAPPENING.
That’s the first thing I didn’t enjoy about the book.
Next, when something finally happens (I’ll try to keep from spoiling everything), there’s not really a purpose. Again, things are just happening just to happen. And are you supposed to like the boy she leaves with? or not? There are moments when you think, oh she might really like him, and then you remember that she shouldn’t, and it’s all just a confusing mess.
Since “which boy will she pick” is the main part of the book, and nothing else is really learned or happening, you spend a lot of time thinking about which boy. It was still pretty dull. And I love to read books for the “which boy will she pick”!
Lastly, the book didn’t end.
IT DIDN’T END! or resolve or partially resolve anything. Unless you count boy 2 finding her. And now she’s back with both boys. But it literally just ends, almost mid-scene. And yea, I get that the author wants you to read the next book, and she thinks she set up this great cliffhanger, but it’s book 1, give us some sort of ending so that we know the next book will be worth reading. How can we trust that the end of the series will be a satisfying ending if there isn’t a satisfying ending of book one? Or some sort of closure? or something?
So there you go. That’s why I won’t read the next book. I barely made it through this one, and I don’t want to read another whole book that dances around the love triangle. Book one does leave you with more set up for plot to happen, but can I trust that something will?
Oh, and fantasy? A prophecy talked about dragons and such but that’s about it.