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The Kiss of Deception

Review

The Kiss of Deception

In a world where first-born daughters are said to possess a gift of magic, Princess Lia defies her father, the King, and flees an arranged marriage to live her own life as she wishes. However, she doesn’t know exactly the price that choice will cost her or how it will prompt others to make their own drastic choices in retaliation, including the prince she fled from and the assassin sent to kill her.

Cue flailing here. This book drew me in from the first few chapters. For those who are new to Mary E. Pearson’s writing, you are in for a total treat. I read THE ADORATION OF JENNA FOX and fell in love with every futuristic and nuanced detail. And I really had no idea what I was getting into with THE KISS OF DECEPTION. I knew that I was a fan but had no idea what to expect. I was blown away. Her versatility shows in her ability to switch genres and master them. I was so wrapped up in this fantasy that I had completely forgotten about the futuristic thriller I had read years before. It was as if this author spent years building this world and had only written fantasy.

Due to that, I was so impressed with the world building in this novel. In between chapters told from various point-of-views are the writings from a historical text in Lia’s world. We’re not clued into the significance until the last quarter of the book but it brings foreboding and forewarning in the quick glimpses we are given. The languages that Mary E. Pearson created and the kingdoms she build to make up this world are so elaborate and detailed that I had to stare at a map for a while to sort everything out. And it wasn’t as if all of this extra knowledge was cumbersome. I just wanted to marvel at it.

The wording was so evocative and the tone so gentle that at times, I felt like the characters were sitting around me and whispering their stories. Yes, it was that good.

I spent most of the time reading this novel wishing I could curl up and finish it in one sitting. For those who have seen it, you know that looks a bit impossible. It’s huge! However, at almost five hundred pages, it didn’t feel that way at all. And there was something about Lia’s point-of-view, as well as the point-of-views of the two other characters, that needed to be spoken aloud. I can only imagine what the audio-book will be like. I felt like this was an ancient and fabled tale, one that had could have been passed down from generations. It was so convincing in its created myth and beautiful in it’s pacing, that I could have done with letting it lull me to sleep. That isn’t to say that it was boring.  It was just so soothing in parts and as I read about Terravin, an idyllic coastal town, I imagined the words rocking me to sleep as one of the boats moored around the harbor would.

On more than one occasion I thought I would miss my train stop because I needed to flip to the next page. It’s just that the wording was so evocative and the tone so gentle at times that I felt like the characters were sitting around me and whispering their stories. Yes, it was that good.

And speaking of the characters, I loved them all. Lia’s interactions with Rafe and Kaden were perfect. At first, I was weary of a possible love triangle but soon learned to dismiss any preconceived notions and just let the story unravel. Of course, there was an added bonus in that Mary Pearson didn’t reveal which boy, Rafe or Kaden, was the assassin and which was the prince. And even though I tried to figure it out, I was glad that I didn’t. While the twist wasn’t the be-all and end-all of the novel, it definitely added to the enjoyment of it. And when the reveal took place, I was thoroughly surprised.

This also wasn’t a novel of sidekicks. Pauline, Lia’s best friend and lady-in-waiting was no slouch. I really loved her kindness and strength. She was a great companion but also a fantastic character. Mary Pearson gave Pauline her own chapter later on in the novel and it was so fitting that I wish we had more of the girl’s point-of-view. Hopefully, we can look forward to more of that in the next novel?

The only bad thing about this book was that it had to end. For those of you who are looking for a story that you won’t be able to put down, I urge you to pick this up. It’s fast-paced and intense and perfect for just about any time or place. Whether you need a cozy nighttime story or something to peruse by the beach, THE KISS OF DECEPTION is a must-read for every lover of adventure, romance and well-told stories.

Reviewed by Brianna Robinson on July 16, 2014

The Kiss of Deception
(The Remnant Chronicles #1)
by Mary E. Pearson

  • Publication Date: July 8, 2014
  • Genres: Youth Fiction
  • Hardcover: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
  • ISBN-10: 0805099239
  • ISBN-13: 9780805099232