Friday, 23 June 2017

Review: Now I Rise (The Conqueror's Saga, #2) by Kiersten White

Lada Dracul has no allies. No throne. All she has is what she’s always had: herself. After failing to secure the Wallachian throne, Lada is out to punish anyone who dares to cross her blood-strewn path. Filled with a white-hot rage, she storms the countryside with her men, accompanied by her childhood friend Bogdan, terrorizing the land. But brute force isn’t getting Lada what she wants. And thinking of Mehmed brings little comfort to her thorny heart. There’s no time to wonder whether he still thinks about her, even loves her. She left him before he could leave her.

What Lada needs is her younger brother Radu’s subtlety and skill. But Mehmed has sent him to Constantinople—and it’s no diplomatic mission. Mehmed wants control of the city, and Radu has earned an unwanted place as a double-crossing spy behind enemy lines. Radu longs for his sister’s fierce confidence—but for the first time in his life, he rejects her unexpected plea for help. Torn between loyalties to faith, to the Ottomans, and to Mehmed, he knows he owes Lada nothing. If she dies, he could never forgive himself—but if he fails in Constantinople, will Mehmed ever forgive him?

As nations fall around them, the Dracul siblings must decide: what will they sacrifice to fulfill their destinies? Empires will topple, thrones will be won . . . and souls will be lost. 

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This review may contain spoilers for the first book, And I Darken.

I received an arc from the publisher through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. You can find my review for the first book, And I Darken here. I would like to thank the publisher, Random House Children's, for approving me to read this book, I’m very grateful for this opportunity.

Things I liked about Now I Rise:

- It is more action-packed than the first book, even though it is still very slow paced. A lot of the plot still revolves around politics, though.

- We got to know some minor characters from the first book better, like Hunyadi and Cyprian. I was immediately drawn to their storylines. I wished to see more of Oana, though. We were introduced to some amazing new characters as well, like Daciana and Guistiniani. I will let you discover these ones yourself.

- We see less of Mehmed!

- Kiersten White amped up the violence and the cruelty factor. If you thought the first book contained a lot of horrors, you better prepare yourself for the second one.

- The book alternates between a Lada chapter and a Radu chapter. At first, I was only interested in Lada's story, I thought Radu's part was quite boring, not much happened and his side was all politics. About 60 % into the book, things changed. I found myself enjoying Radu's chapters the most as they too became more action-packed.

- Radu slowly began to think more for himself instead of just blindly following Mehmed.

Things I didn't like:

- First of all, all these books in the trilogy are too long, in my opinion. They could and probably should have been a lot shorter.

- Mehmed has become even more insufferable, he and I will never get along.

- I would like to know more about all the secondary characters. I want to know more about Nicolai, Bogdan, Cyprian, etc. I feel they could have been more developed.

- Most of my dislikes from the first book haven't really changed in the sequel. The first book nicely set up the events in Now I Rise, but I'm not sure what is going to happen in the third book. I feel this could have been a duology.

- I would like to see more interaction between Lada and Radu.

I gave this book 3,5 stars because I liked it better than the first one. So, if you enjoyed And I Darken, you should definitely check out Now I Rise!

Publication date: June 27th 2017

Have you read this book or are you planning to? Leave your thoughts down below!

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  1. I'm fine with action and horror but concerned that the book lengths might make it drag a bit for me. Not sure yet if I'll look at the series but I liked your review!

    1. Thank you! These books are definitely slow paced, it took me a while to read them, but I'm glad I did.

  2. I read And I Darken when it came out but didn't really enjoy it. I'm definitely not a fan of how big + slow-paced the books are. I LOVED Radu, though, so I might consider picking up this sequel since it sounds like he gets featured a little more! He was my absolute favorite.
    Lovely review, Lynn! ^-^
    xx adaline || not gary cooper

    1. Thank you! The length and slow pace of these books are my main issue as well! But Radu is the best and you do get to see a lot more of him in the sequel.