Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Early Review: Falling Kingdoms

Falling Kingdoms
Morgan Rhodes

Publisher: UK – Puffin Books

Ebook Available 11th December 2012
Print Book Available 3rd January 2013

In a land where magic has been forgotten but peace has reigned for centuries, a deadly unrest is simmering. Three kingdoms grapple for power—brutally transforming their subjects’ lives in the process. Amidst betrayals, bargains, and battles, four young people find their fates forever intertwined:
Cleo: A princess raised in luxury must embark on a rough and treacherous journey into enemy territory in search of a magic long thought extinct.
Jonas: Enraged at injustice, a rebel lashes out against the forces of oppression that have kept his country impoverished—and finds himself the leader of a people’s revolution centuries in the making.
Lucia: A girl adopted at birth into a royal family discovers the truth about her past—and the supernatural legacy she is destined to wield.
Magnus: Bred for aggression and trained to conquer, a firstborn son begins to realize that the heart can be more lethal than the sword...
The only outcome that’s certain is that kingdoms will fall. Who will emerge triumphant when all they know has collapsed?

Following teenagers across three lands as their countries come closer and closer to war, Falling Kingdoms weaves multiple strands, religious view points, political differences and romance into a fantastical entertaining and engaging story.

Princess Cleo comes from a land of plenty and a much loved and indulgent childhood. However, her actions and decisions while buying wine starts a series of events which bring the whole country to the edge. Cleo is sweet, but very naive and her character really grows up throughout the story and becomes more aware of the wider world and the consequences of her actions. Jonas, son of a wine seller is a harder character to love as he is bitter and vengeful, but he realises some harsh truths through his encounter with people in power and has the makings of a true hero in the future. However, my favourite characters were Magnus, Prince of the Northern Kingdom who is walking a fine line between his father’s blood thirsty character and his own traitorous heart and his sister Lucia, who’s inheritance could change everything. Meeting all these characters in their late teens means that they are all still figuring out who they are and what paths they should be on. It shows how easy it can be to do the wrong thing, not knowing what else can be done. I loved that the characters aren’t purely good of purely bad – there are so many shades of grey and Morgan Rhodes has done a great job of showing how good can be in the eye of the beholder.

There are comparisons to A Game of Thrones and there are some similarities particularly the alternating chapters across different sides of the story while the action is building towards a major conflict. However, Falling Kingdoms stands on its own with intriguing characters and an interesting plot. The writing is charming and pulls you into this world. I couldn’t put it down! However, while some elements are wrapped up here there is a large question mark left over the future of some of our characters with a quest set up for the second book in the trilogy...it will be a long wait before I can check in again with Magnus, Cleo and Lucia!

Recommended for fans of Sarah J Maas and Kristin Cashore. 8.5 out of 10

Don’t forget to check out the other stops on the blog tour for Falling Kingdoms!


  1. "I loved that the characters aren’t purely good of purely bad – there are so many shades of grey and Morgan Rhodes has done a great job of showing how good can be in the eye of the beholder."

    That definitely makes me want to pick this one up Mel! I, too, adore characters who blur the line between good and bad, those are my favorite ones I love to pick apart and see what they're made of. Can't wait to get a copy of this!

  2. Oh this sounds so good. I've been looking for a good fantasy and this one seems to fit that bill. Oh man I also just love that cover. I've added it to the wishlist... it's out in the US too! WHEE!

  3. Dang I hope I get an ARC copy of this. I love Throne of Glass and from the sound of this book, I'm sure I will love it too!

  4. Hmm, I do think I need this one. Although I've not read King of Thrones, I like the alternating idea. Thank you!