Thursday, June 15, 2017

ARC Review: The Fallen Kingdom by Elizabeth May

Title: The Fallen Kingdom
Series: The Falconer #3
Written by: Elizabeth May
Published: June 13, 2017 by Chronicle

(Amazon / Goodreads)

Synopsis: The long-awaited final book in the Falconer trilogy is an imaginative tour-de-force that will thrill fans of the series. 

Aileana Kameron, resurrected by ancient fae magic, returns to the world she once knew with no memory of her past and with dangerous powers she struggles to control. Desperate to break the curse that pits two factions of the fae against each other in a struggle that will decide the fate of the human and fae worlds, her only hope is hidden in an ancient book guarded by the legendary Morrigan, a faery of immense power and cruelty. To save the world and the people she loves, Aileana must learn to harness her dark new powers even as they are slowly destroying her. 

Packed with immersive detail, action, romance, and fae lore, and publishing simultaneously in the UK, The Fallen Kingdom brings the Falconer's story to an epic and unforgettable conclusion.

*** I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This fact has not changed my opinion. ***

I have been anxiously waiting on this book after the way the last book ended. I needed to know what happened to these characters. And it definitely did not disappoint. It was a book full of action, surprises, and great characters.

I think my favorite thing about this book and this series in general is the world. Elizabeth May is able to create an amazing fantasy world that feels unique and familiar at the same time. I don't usually like books with fae but I love this one. The magical creatures and fae are much more on the darker side which is totally up my alley. Plus this is a series with a world with a history and a mythology behind it. In this book we get to explore that so much more and it was absolutely fascinating. And the interesting thing too is that it was a subtle kind of world-building. It didn't overwhelm you with information. It showed instead of telling you about what was at play here. Seriously, more we explore the world the happier I was with this book.

But I also really love the characters of this series. In the course of three books I have become so attached and connected to these characters. I immediately fell in love with the main character of Aileana in this series and I loved her even more here. She has been through a lot and I feel like we have been through a lot with her. She's one of those female protagonists that I love because while she is tough, kickass, and smart she is also vulnerable. She makes bad decisions and has to live with the consequences and she is forced to do things she doesn't want to do. I loved seeing her development in this book and watching her step into the role of hero in an even bigger way.

This book also has amazing secondary characters. Some of them I've loved since we first met them, like Derrick who is amazing and hilarious as usual, and Aithinne who is sweet and tough in her own way. While others it took me awhile to fall for. I really liked Kiaran in this book. I think I'm one of the only people who didn't ship this right away but I gotta say, I ship it now. I get the connection between the two characters and I liked seeing Kiaran or should I say Kadamach in a different way. He also had really great development. But the character with the best development was definitely Sorcha. How Elizabeth was able to make a character who was a straight up villain into a sympathetic character I will never know. But I loved Sorcha in this book. She was snarky and amazing. But that was just the tip of the iceberg when it came to these characters. There were so many amazing ones. They were all complex and likeable.

And as great as the character development was, the plot development was even better. This is a book full of action and adventure. The series always had amazing battle scenes and tons of moments that had me on the edge of my seat, so of course those continued in this book. And because this was the last book in the series the stakes were even higher. There were tons of surprises, twists, and big reveals that had me shocked and enthralled. I'm a plot driven reader and I loved this book for the ride it took me on.

However I will say, I didn't totally live the pacing and some of the way book unfolded. I think that this is just a slower paced book series. It really takes it's time to build things up. In the last two books it gave us crazy cliffhangers. This book couldn't do that so instead it just gave us almost no falling action. It was over 400 pages of crazy action and plot development and then it was just over. I would have liked a little more falling action for the last book in the series. I also felt like there were some moments in the middle of the book where it just lost a little bit of the flow. It didn't really move smoothly along. But in general it did build to a good conclusion that I enjoyed.

On the whole, The Fallen Kingdom was a great ending to an amazing series. It's a great historical fantasy series with a fascinating world, complex characters, and a thrilling plot. I'd say it leans more on the fantasy side with the world and characters but either way it's super engaging and I really liked it.

I give The Fallen Kingdom by Elizabeth May 9 out of 10 stars

Buy/Borrow/Bypass: Buy. If you liked the first two books in this series you definitely need to read this book. You will live it. And if you haven't read this series and are looking for an interesting YA fantasy with a little historical feel to it check this series out.

Have you read The Fallen Kingdom? What did you think? Leave me a comment with your thoughts. Thanks for stopping by and HAPPY READING!

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