Monday, August 4, 2014

Review: The Immortal Crown by Richelle Mead

Title: The Immortal Crown
Author: Richelle Mead
Series: Age of X #2
Reading Level: Adult
Publisher: Dutton | May 29, 2014
Pages: 432

Add it: Goodreads

Buy it: Amazon | Book Depository  


The #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Vampire Academy and Bloodline series returns with the second installment in her acclaimed Age of X series.

Gameboard of the Gods introduced religious investigator Justin March and Mae Koskinen, the beautiful supersoldier assigned to protect him. Together they have been charged with investigating reports of the supernatural and the return of the gods, both inside the Republic of United North America and out. With this highly classified knowledge comes a shocking revelation: Not only are the gods vying for human control, but the elect—special humans marked by the divine—are turning against one another in bloody fashion.

Their mission takes a new twist when they are assigned to a diplomatic delegation headed by Lucian Darling, Justin’s old friend and rival, going into Arcadia, the RUNA’s dangerous neighboring country. Here, in a society where women are commodities and religion is intertwined with government, Justin discovers powerful forces at work, even as he struggles to come to terms with his own reluctantly acquired deity.

Meanwhile, Mae—grudgingly posing as Justin’s concubine—has a secret mission of her own: finding the illegitimate niece her family smuggled away years ago. But with Justin and Mae resisting the resurgence of the gods in Arcadia, a reporter’s connection with someone close to Justin back home threatens to expose their mission—and with it the divine forces the government is determined to keep secret.

The Scene: Same confusing and dizzying world that Richelle Mead built in the first book, Gameboard of the Gods. Except not so confusing because you learned most of everything world building related in said first book. This time, majority of the action takes place in enemy country, Arcadia where women have like no rights and are treated like trash. Add in gods, supernatural shenanigans, sex trafficking, kidnapping, and politics to this book and you've got a pretty good sequel.

The Girl: Mae is basically the same in the sequel; cold, calcualting, and ruthless. The only exception is that she's waaay more open to Justin and the supernatural. I like Mae well enough but I still couldn't quite click with her character. As I've said in my review of Gamboard of the Gods, I blame the third person POV. Don't get me wrong, many authors do this well, great even. I just think it's not Richelle's thing. 

The Boy(s): Justin and Mae's relationship actually got somewhere in The Immortal Crown. Justin has a lot of faults, yes, but he really is sweet and when it comes to Mae, even sweeter. But, because of that ending I'm stuck in between smiling at him and cursing at him. Cliffhangers suck.

The WTF?!: I'm really not a fan of politics in general so reading about a book chock full of it was kind of a downer for me. Also, for some reason, I hated it when it came to Tessa's POV. She grates on me, I've no idea why. I understand how her storyline is going to connect with Justin's but her story just seems so irrelevant.

The Buzz: All in all, The Immortal Crown is a solid sequel to Gameboard. I enjoyed parts of this book more than its predecssor. I liked the action parts especially Mae's journey in Arcadia to get back to the RUNA. Some of the storyline was good but it was still a bit too much for me. Richelle really built up a complicated world that, in my opinion, takes away from the story. I think there needs to be more action involved and the story drags sometimes. The third person perspective also dampens the buzz factor for me. There are some bright spots though so I'm hoping the third book will be better. Plus, I've got to read it because...cliffhangers you know. :)   


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