Thursday, August 4, 2016

Daughters of Ruin by K.D. Castner

Published: April 2016
Publisher: Margaret McElderry Books
Pages: 320
Copy Provided by: Riveted
Summary: Goodreads

Meet rumor with quiet, treason with cunning, and vicious with vicious.

Rhea, Cadis, Suki, and Iren have lived together since they were children. They are called sisters. They are not. They are called equals. They are not. They are princesses. And they are enemies.

A brutal war ravaged their kingdoms, and Rhea’s father was the victor. As a gesture of peace, King Declan brought the daughters of his rivals to live under his protection—and his ever-watchful eye.

For ten years they have trained together as diplomats and warriors, raised to accept their thrones and unite their kingdoms in peace. But there is no peace among sisters, and all plans shatter when the palace is attacked. As their intended future lies in ashes, Rhea, Cadis, Suki, and Iren must decide where their loyalties lie: to their nations, or to each other.

Alliances shift and the consequences are deadly in this stunning fantasy debut from K. D. Castner.

I love how publishers now are allowing free reads on their websites. I mean it has been going on for years but I love how older titles get a fresh new set of eyes.  It is not just the newer releases.  A bit like book rejuvenation, don't you think?  I originally started reading this title on Riveted, a book site for YA readers by Simon & Schuster. If you haven't already checked it out, you should. They offer free reads or sneak peeks to new and old titles in their library.

What drew me to this book originally was the cover. It is so sultry and seductive with the greyscale background and the red dress.  The premise too was intriguing.  He sounds like a good king trying to establish goodwill between the warring nations. However, good intentions are not always successful.  This title draws you into the lives of each girl and how they feel about being taken from their homelands and their families only to be raised by their conqueror.  And each of the princesses' reactions is not as you would think.  Are the princesses happy about growing up in the palace of an adversary or have they been secretly plotting its downfall for years? I personally found Rhea's personality to be VERY weak compared to what I was expecting.  Her father is king and she lacks the same drive and skill to support the throne. Iren was entirely too cunning for my liking, Cadis was so likeable (opposite to what I pictured her to be in my head) and Suki...well, I was ready to write Suki right off the page (and a bit crazy). 

Although this was just the first novel in the series (there must be more), I thoroughly enjoyed it and would consider purchasing it to add to my collection. I do love the quote "Meet rumor with quiet, treason with cunning, and vicious with vicious." and I have yet to decipher which princess matches to each...especially since there are only 3 associations.  Unless of course that was meant for Rhea to apply to Iren, Cadis and Suki (meet crazy with more crazy?).

So the 4 girls grow up and train together and then chaos ensues and rebels invade the castle and now they are left to figure things out. So who set up the attack? Who is in on it? Which princesses will take advantage of it and try to get back to their homes? 

So as much as I like having free reads, one of the problems is that they are often time-limited.  I have missed reading the last 30 pages of this book because my free read expired with Riveted before I was able to finish it off.  (shaking fist at the sky...darn you Riveted!!  I just needed a few more hours!!).  I have played with the idea of purchasing it from Chapters each day on my way home from work but I also have it on hold at the library....Remember....set time aside to read your titles or you will be left in the lurch like me!!

UPDATE!!  I was first in line at the library and it came in this past week for me to finish.  YAY!!  It was an excellent read and I would recommend it to anyone who has also enjoyed the Falling Kingdoms series. It is not as intricate of a story as Morgan Rhode's novels but it has oh so much potential if Ms. Castner sets it up right!  A further seems to have a similar idea to Erin Bow's The Scorpion Rules. I am also reading that title so perhaps we shall see....

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