Friday, July 20, 2018

Book Review: The Heart of Betrayal by Mary E. Pearson

Title: The Heart of Betrayal (The Remnant Chronicles #2)
Author: Mary E. Pearson
Publication Date: July 7, 2015
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. 

Pages: 470
Add to Goodreads
Review for book 1
Tracy's Review

Held captive in the barbarian kingdom of Venda, Lia and Rafe have little chance of escape. Desperate to save Lia's life, her erstwhile assassin, Kaden, has told the Vendan Komizar that she has the gift, and the Komizar's interest in Lia is greater than anyone could have foreseen.

Meanwhile, nothing is straightforward: There's Rafe, who lied to Lia but has sacrificed his freedom to protect her; Kaden, who meant to assassinate her but has now saved her life; and the Vendans, whom Lia always believed to be savages. Now that she lives among them, however, she realizes that may be far from the truth. Wrestling with her upbringing, her gift, and her sense of self, Lia must make powerful choices that will affect her country... and her own destiny.

I absolutely love when a series starts out with a bang and continues to reverberate in the next book.  This series is definitely following that!  I regret that it took me so long to start this series.  Although I am grateful that I can binge them all and not have to wait for them to come out.

This book starts off right where Kiss of Deception left off.  Rafe and Lia are now Venda's first ever prisoners and must come up with a way to get out.  Rafe is trying to lay low and wait for his soldiers to come, but Lia has some other plans as she doesn't believe they'll make it.  As they stay there longer and longer, Lia is paraded around Venda and learns so much about its people and what the Komizar is up to.

Ah, the Komizar.  I really loved to hate him.  He is ruthless, but oh so calculating in why he does what he does.  I get frustrated right there along with Lia when he tells her to do or not do something, yet get nervous if she tries to defy him.  At some points I do understand why he is the way he is, which makes me want to strangle him more.

After the first book, I thought that it was a given who Lia was going to go for, but as I got deeper into this book I couldn't quite say what was going on.  There were fights and make-ups and more fights.  Honestly, it doesn't matter to me who she ends up with, but after this book I'm a bit torn on who she may choose.

As this series gets further along I fall more and more in love with Lia's character.  She has so much growth from when she first arrived in Teravin until the end of this book.  Her strength is astounding!  She becomes such a cool and calculating character even when she just wants to enact her revenge.  I don't know if I could even muster as much self-control that she did at some points.

Again, the world building in this book is extraordinary!  Not only do we get to see the ruins that Venda is built upon but also the mythology that comes out of those ruins.  I have to give Mary props because this world is so intricate.  It must have taken her forever to piece together every single detail in this book. I desperately need to take lessons from her!

And finally, the ending of this book!  OMG!  I did kind of see it coming with all the tension building and building, but I did not anticipate that much of a cliff-hanger.  Man am I glad that I have the third book and can start reading it right away!  Don't mind me as I now slip away to start the next book!