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The Kiss of Deception: The Remnant Chronicles, Book One Kindle Edition
|Length: 497 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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|Age Level: 14 - 18|
|Grade Level: 9 - 12|
- Book 1 of 3 in The Remnant Chronicles
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Praise for The Kiss of Deception:
“The Kiss of Deception has it all--beautiful writing, heart-pounding suspense, a fiery princess, and an epic romance that'll make you swoon. This is definitely one of my favorite reads of the year!” ―Alyson Noël, #1 New York Times–bestselling author of The Immortals
“In The Kiss of Deception, a new realm is masterfully created, featuring court intrigue, feuding nations, breathtaking landscapes, and the gift of sight. Fans of the Game of Thrones series will enjoy the magic and fantasy in this timeless dystopian world.” ―VOYA
"Gripping, urgent, and highly appealing." ―School Library Journal
"Pearson (the Jenna Fox Chronicles) is off to an extraordinary start with her fantasy series, the Remnant Chronicles, creating an alluring world and romance that's ideal for fans of Kristin Cashore and Megan Whalen Turner." ―Publishers Weekly
"Pearson offers readers a wonderfully full-bodied story: harrowing, romantic, and full of myth and memory, fate and hope. . . . This has the sweep of an epic tale, told with some twists." ―Booklist, starred review
"A marvelous new fantasy series that is sure to find an audience with devotees of Suzanne Collins's The Hunger Games and John Flanagan's Ranger's Apprentice books (Philomel). Romance, adventure, mysticism--this book has it all and it just may be the next YA blockbuster." ―School Library Journal, starred review
"After her strong Jenna Fox series, Pearson adeptly switches gears here from science fiction to fantasy, but her ability to write a romance featuring complex characters and a strong plot remains constant." ―The Horn Book
“The Kiss of Deception is a deeply satisfying, intricately plotted fantasy where no one--no one--is quite what they seem. Full of lush writing and rich, complex characters, readers will quickly become enmeshed in the intricate web of lies that have been woven into the very fabric of the kingdom itself. A thoroughly engrossing read--I couldn't put it down!” ―Robin LaFevers, New York Times–bestselling author of Grave Mercy and Dark Triumph
“This is the kind of story I love--a heart-pounding tale of magic and murder, betrayal and romance set in a richly imagined fantasy landscape.” ―Cinda Williams Chima, New York Times–bestselling author of the Seven Realms and the Heir Chronicles
“Peppered with excerpts from sacred texts and traditional songs, the novel has a formidable heroine at its core, who is as quick with a knife as she is to laugh or cry. Pearson maintains the mystery of Rafe and Kaden's identities, pulling readers through this masterfully crafted story.” ―Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
“Pearson's first book in her Remnant Chronicles is thrilling. Readers will be hooked from the first page to the last and will find themselves eagerly anticipating the next installment. Pearson pairs a rich and varied plot with a fiery and headstrong heroine.” ―Romantic Times
“Mystery, romance, betrayal, redemption: There's plenty to hook readers in to this installment of Lia's saga and make them impatient for the volumes to come.” ―Chicago Tribune
“Pearson's writing is beautiful, and her ability to twist a plot into knots keeps the reader wanting more.” ―BookPage
“This thick book is fantastical and interesting (with a bit of mystery thrown in!). . . .There's a lot of mystery that spices up the book. It's not all about the mystery, but it's on the peripheral always, which makes it that much more interesting.” ―USA Today
“Lia herself is a likeable heroine, and the selfishness in her act of leaving a kingdom in shambles for some future love is negated by her obvious naivete about political strategies and romantic relationships . . . Most intriguing are the two love interests, though, partly because of the way Pearson structures their narrating chapters.” ―BCCB
“Rich and exciting . . . a bold ending whets appetites for the next installment.” ―Kirkus Reviews
- Publication Date : July 8, 2014
- File Size : 3987 KB
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print Length : 497 pages
- Publisher : Henry Holt and Co. (BYR); Reprint Edition (July 8, 2014)
- ASIN : B00I1W23A4
- Language: : English
- Enhanced Typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #47,533 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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After Lia escapes an arranged marriage to the prince of a neighboring kingdom, she finds peace and contentment as a tavern maid in a small village. However, her life becomes complicated with the arrival of two men, Rafe and Kaden, who she comes to care for. However, little does she know that one is the prince she left at the altar and one is an assassin meant to kill her.
As Lia finds herself falling in love, she also finds herself uncovering secrets about her heritage and the history of her kingdom, and also the power she has within herself.
Okay, now, I truly enjoyed this story. The reason my rating is not higher, is for reasons I can only attribute to personal preference. There were issues I had with some of the technical choices Mary E. Pearson made but I understand that not everyone will feel the same. I will be discussing them in detail down below, and there will be spoilers.
For the first half of this story we are not meant to know which man is the assassin and which one is the prince. It is supposed to add to the mystery and suspense of the situation, and I assume we are to route for one or the other, based on their own merits, rather than how they progress the story.
I found it almost laughably easy to figure that Rafe was the jilted prince and Kaden the assassin. For two reasons.
1. Their physical descriptions. Rafe is described with darker features, where as Kaden is the lighter of the two, with blonde hair. I instantly knew Rafe was the prince because no way anyone would believe a man with lovely blonde locks would be a vicious assassin. I feel that it was a plot device used by Pearson to throw us off the scent.
2. Because Lia's attentions were only for Rafe. Rather then give both Rafe and Kaden equal attention during this portion of the story, Rafe almost instantaneously became the focus. This not only made it hard for the reader to care about both of them equally, but again, it made it obvious that Rafe was the prince. Why? Because no self-respecting, hard-core assassin would let himself be so easily and completely taken by a target. Sure, Kaden grew feelings for Lia, which was what ultimately kept her alive, but he wasn't out snogging her and completely forgetting his mission.
Going back to their physical appearances, I felt myself distracted by the plot device that Pearson used to manipulate our opinion of which man was the assassin or the prince. Why? Because I wanted Kaden to be that dark, brooding man you would believe the assassin to be. So that is how I kept picturing him.
Another personal struggle I had, was trying to pay attention to the politics and history woven throughout the story. There was so much focus on Lia and her relationship with these two men, the snippets of history and the things Lia uncovered almost felt secondary and unimportant. This read to me more like a historical romance rather than a fantasy.
Finally, there was a portion of this book that dragged a great deal. When Lia and Kaden are travelling back to Venda, this seemed to go on endlessly and, in my opinion, slowed the momentum of the story. Though it did end with a bang, I feel there probably could have been about fifty or pages cut out.
So yes, that is quite a few gripes. But I did enjoy the overall story and found it to be a quick and engaging read. I was always interested to see what happens next and with that ending, I am definitely to see how Lia and Rafe's fortunes fair in Venda
The reason why I did not rate this book higher is because of the following reasons:
+ Character development is slow and unfinished. I often thought that both Rafe and Kaden could have been the same person.
+ To much time wasted where "nothing happens" in the book (Lia takes strolls, gets things, have meaningless conversations with people - most of the time with Rafe or Kaden).
+ The assassin is not believable in my eyes (he does not behave like someone should when having that kind of background) in the first half of the book. There is no way a trained assassin would publicly "befriend" your victim - unless they wanted to extract vital information first (which is not the case here). A spy maybe, but an assassin? No. But even the prince seems childish at times.
One of the things that I thought was done especially well was the switching of the point of view of the characters. Though the majority of the story was told from the perspective of Lia, some of the chapters were told by others. What was especially brilliant on the part of the author was that the other chapters were sometimes labeled as being told by “The Prince” or “The Assassian”, sometimes they were labeled as being by “Kaden” or “Rafe”, and you never really knew which of the two was which. It was extremely well done, and I really was never sure which guy was the prince.
I loved the characters, the plot, the telling. I will certainly be reading more books by this author.
This review first appeared on amongTheReads.net.
Top reviews from other countries
Lia is princess of Morrighan and destined to marry a stranger, the prince from Dalbreck. Determined not to let her fate be decided for her, Lia flees with her best friend and maid, Pauline. The girls arrive at a town called Terravin and take up work in an inn to survive. Lia throws herself into a simpler life, one she can choose her own path and make her own decisions. But her past catches up to her quickly in the form of two attractive guys: Rafe and Kaden. They both know who Lia is--one is the scorned prince and the other is an assassin sent by Venda, another city intent on seeing the alliance between Morrighan and Dalbreck annihilated. As Lia's simple life begins to become vastly complicated, she must decide between doing her duty and doing what her heart longs for. And she must decide quickly, before the assassin makes her choice for her.
I've never read a book by Pearson before, and I enjoyed her writing style very much. This is such a well written book and I grasped everything pretty well. With the help of the map inside the cover, I could see where Lia was travelling perfectly.
Whilst some elements were quite stereotypical in some ways, i.e. hidden royals, lost history, prophecies, love triangle etc etc, I was quite happy to be swept away into it. I really enjoyed reading about Rafe and Kaden and trying to decide who was really who for myself. It was a fun read.
However, it ends on such a major cliffhanger and I HATE books that do this. There is no sense of resolution in many ways. Lia discovers who is who but there are several sub plots that are not resolved. Despite this, I was happy to buy book two as I was on holiday and would be happy to follow Lia for another book. It was at this point I pulled out my kindle. I can't tell you how annoyed I was to discover that none of these books are available on Kindle (unless you want to learn Portugeuse very quickly). This feels extremely limiting and has infuriated me to the point I feel disrespected as a reader by the cliffhanger, and then further disrespected that the second and third instalments are not easy to come by. I'm so irked I have not decided if I will be ordering the other paperbacks when I return to the UK! Readers beware.
That’s not to say I disliked this book; I didn’t, but this will definitely suit a certain type of reader. The premise is that princess Lia flees from an arranged marriage with her companion Pauline on the day she’s due to be meeting the prince. She is immediately hunted and sets about leaving misleading clues in her wake to confuse her trackers; she doesn’t quite manage to shake two of them, not that she’s entirely aware of this. The Prince, under the disguise of a farmer named Rafe, and an assassin named Kaden are close on her tail. So close in fact that they begin watching her, changing their minds about her and befriend her in their disguised identities. I’m sure I don’t need to warn of the standard impending love triangle.
Actually the dynamics between characters in this novel are what make it so engaging. The dialogue is a really great balance of good natured humour and serious dramas, so the friendships feel authentic. It’s uncommon for me to feel invested in friendships or relationships – they have to be really well written to capture me – but Pauline and Lia’s dynamic is so nice to read about; it’s warm, genuine and easy to become quickly invested in. Rafe and Kaden are likable, if not disreputable, characters with a degree of mystery each (and not in an endearing love interest way, more so in a unique backstory way). I still don’t care for love triangles, but it’s a timid one at best; Lia seems pretty sure of her decisions towards the latter portion of the book.
This is quite an atmospheric book, with excellent world building and a really well developed historical setting. But it's unavoidable that the plot detracts somewhat from this – there’s no way to make it sound like a unique or terribly interesting premise and a slow pace on top of that makes it an even harder sell. The author attempts to inject some magical intrigue into the history of the world, exposing Lia as having some sort of a “gift” but fails to actual give us a reveal at any point and so this arc falls flat and feels more like an archetypal “chosen one” trope. These things didn't matter so much to me, because I lost myself in the world building enough to feel quite submerged in the story still, but I can see that it would be a problem for others.
Character driven readers will most likely enjoy the book and may be able to look past this, compelled by the relationships enough to continue, but plot driven readers won’t be able to stomach this lacklustre pace.
Okay so starting with the positives of this book.
1. Lia is a very strong character who will defend herself
2. The female friendships in this book were so strong. How Pauline stuck with Lia through her escape to Pauline’s pregnancy and Lia ensuring that she is okay.
3. I enjoyed the area of mystery and not knowing out of Rafe and Kayden who was the assassin and who was the prince ( although I figured it out after a couple of chapters)
4. Berdi in general and her connections with people and how she just embrace Lia even through trouble who eventually catch up with her.
5. The jokes between all the characters.
Even though I enjoyed this books overall there are still something’s that made me not enjoy them so much.
1. How quickly Rafe and Kayden found Lia, she went far away and yet they still managed to find her rather quickly.
2. How Rafe and Kayden are always everywhere at the right time and place to help Lia.
3. The plot developed really slowly especially after Kayden captured Lia and revealed that he was the assassin.
4. Animal abuse- I mean this was the area of the book that made me really mad, when you have an injured horse or any animals you let that horse rest, you do not carry on riding it just waiting for it to give way. When Lia killed the horse that scene got to me so much more than any other death in this book.
5. Malich as a character really pissed me off, he was a complete ass for telling Lia that he killed Greta and then trying to rape her afterwards just because she jumped him, what an ass, I hope he dies in the next book.
6. The ending sucked, I mean where was Rafe big scene when he told everyone that he was the Prince? Anyway, the ending wasn’t so much a cliff hanger it was more of a okay let’s just end it here and then make people read the next book.
Anyway all in all this was a enjoyable read, despite it dragging a lot of the way, I hope the rest of the series is not like this, but I also feel as though this book was just a starting point for a high paced series( well here’s to hoping).
The first part of the book was okay, we got to know more about Lia, the Prince and the Assassin and I find them all interesting characters. I especially loved the fact that the author never really says who’s the Assassin and who’s the Prince. And yet I was sure I knew who they were. Fooled me well…
The second part was the most exciting, especially when I reached page 300 and something. I couldn’t put the book down! I was so sure I had everything figured out and then BAM PLOT TWIST! It made me go back in the book to see if I had missed something! It made me crazy but it gripped my attention and that’s what makes books memorable, so I really recommend this book!
Princess Lia is the First Daughter of the House of Morrighan and is promised to the Prince of Dalbreck by her parents against her wishes. Leaving Lia no other choice, she flees on her wedding day knowing that once she leaves, she can never return. Now living out her life with her friend Pauline in a quite village Terravin, it’s there that Lia tries to forget about her old life and try to become someone else. But what Lia doesn’t know is that people are hunting her for their own goals and soon it brings the arrival of two strangers to Terravin who both have their eyes of Lia. Drawn to both of these men, Lia quickly realises that they both have secrets but can Lia risk getting close to them when she’s trying to hide who she really is?
I had my doubts before starting this book just because I’ve seen so many mixed reviews. So I tried to go into the story without any expectations and you know what? I’m glad I did because this just proves that if I had listened to the other reviews, I probably wouldn’t have read this story and then I would have missed out on such a beautiful read!
I completely fell in love with The Kiss of Deception. It’s quite a lengthy book, just fewer than 500 pages and although no real action happens towards the midway point, there was always something going on to keep me completely engrossed by the story. And yes, I’m talking about the love triangle. The most frustrating love triangle I’ve read in a long time but it was also the best I’ve read about too.
The story is told from Princess Lia point of view but we also get The Prince and The Assassin's point of view. This adds to the mystery of the boys because Mary E. Pearson writes this story so cleverly that you don’t know who is who out of the two love interests because soon you get chapters from Rafe and Kaden – but who is The Prince and who is the Assassin? I absolutely loved trying to figure out who was who. It was so suspenseful that I thought I would burst and I couldn’t make my mind up. I was rooting for one guy from the start and I just didn’t even want to imagine if Lia ended up with the other one. So, well done Ms Pearson for writing a fantastic love triangle!
The story isn’t just centred on the romance though. It’s about a Lia trying to have a life that it hers and I loved her for it. She’s very head strong, stubborn and in my mind, a perfect fit to be Queen. I admired her determination throughout the story and loved how independent she was. You won’t get no sulking from this girl! Not only that, the plot of the story is also surrounded by political issues between the different kingdoms and there is an ancient prophecy that has been foretold. As these issues come closer to the end of the story, by the time I’d finished, I was left wanting more. And be prepared for a killer ending, talk about amazing! As soon as I’d finished this book the sequel – The Heart of Betrayal – was put straight on my wish list. The release cannot come soon enough!
In all, take a chance on The Kiss of Deception and I promise you won’t be disappointed but left completely captivated by Ms Pearson’s work.