At first I really was enjoying this book. I was intrigued by the main character who was hidden away from the realm until she could take her rightful place. She was naive, brave, and a bit mysterious. Her flight to the throne and her capture kept me turning the pages. I was really starting to enjoy this book.
My first impression of this book was that it is set in a Medieval world with knights and kingdoms in peril. Then the characters talked about birth control, technology, and modern authors… wait what??? What time period are we in again? I actually had to do some research at work (because that is what librarians do) to figure out what the heck was going on. The New York post sheds a bit of light on the confusion:
“The book takes place 300 years in the future — though it appears at first glance more like medieval times. In the Tearling world, technology is banned, castles and royalty are back in vogue and the scourge of slavery and human tracking has returned to society. Slavery, it should be noted, is done via a lottery system as an offering to the Red Queen.”
* This was taken from this article: http://nypost.com/2014/02/15/will-emm…
No where on the back cover is this mentioned at all. When I got to these parts in the book I was super confused. If it had been mentioned at the beginning rather than sprinkled randomly around in the story I might have stuck with this one. The world building in this story is spread out and unclear throughout the book. I ended up skim reading the rest of it because I was so annoyed with the writing.
Also, what is up with publishers who constantly tout “Just like Hunger Games and Game of Thrones?” I get that they want people who like those series to pick up the title. However dear reader, you might as well wipe your brain free of those references because this book is nothing like it.
I would suggest this book to fantasy/dystopian diehards. It is listed as Adult fiction with a Teen appeal and I feel that is accurate. While it wasn’t a book for me I can see some fantasy readers who can suspend their beliefs and are not worried about weird world building and confusing plots enjoying this title.