The Kiss Of Deception by Mary E. Pearson (The Remnant Chronicles #1)
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co. (BYR)
Release Date: July 8, 2014
Summary: A princess must find her place in a reborn world.
She flees on her wedding day.
She steals ancient documents from the Chancellor’s secret collection.
She is pursued by bounty hunters sent by her own father.
She is Princess Lia, seventeen, First Daughter of the House of Morrighan.
The Kingdom of Morrighan is steeped in tradition and the stories of a bygone world, but some traditions Lia can’t abide. Like having to marry someone she’s never met to secure a political alliance.
Fed up and ready for a new life, Lia flees to a distant village on the morning of her wedding. She settles in among the common folk, intrigued when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deceptions swirl and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—secrets that may unravel her world—even as she feels herself falling in love.
My Thoughts: A solid start to a trilogy filled with intrigue, deception & a romance that will keep you turning the page!
I’m still debating leaving this at a 4 or 3.5!
I went into this story with a basic idea of a plot! A runaway princess who meets an assassin & a prince and the reader has to figure out who is who!
I’m sure the author intended to keep the identities a secret till the very end, however I figured out who was the prince + the assassin the moment both guys met each other and were introduced!
So it was kind of a let down for me knowing very early on!
There were aspects from the world-building, plot + characters that I really enjoyed,yet some aspects I didn’t!
From the very beginning readers are introduced to this ancient/medieval world with royalty, festivals, deeply rooted religion/faith which plays quite an important part, not only in this world and the many kingdoms/citizens, but also in the main character Lia’s life!
There was an introduction to many languages that are spoken across the kingdoms + politics, which is loosely touched upon in the beginning, however discussed more towards that last 1/2 of the novel! (Which were +‘s on world building)
However my main issues that come with the world introduced was the excerpts of religious texts/stories, while very important (especially towards the end), really slowed the pacing for me!
As a whole I could definitely picture the setting in my mind, however while reading there are many elements introduced that give it rich world-building, yet I still felt it came off as flat and it appeared to me that it was somehow incomplete.
That was my biggest issue.
The first chapter or so are paced well, however as the plot progresses and Lia escapes, the pacing is EXTREMELY slow!! Which made reading this novel quite a task!
And the pacing doesn’t really pick up, in my opinion, until the last 1/2 or so of the novel when secrets among other plot points are introduced!
The romance definitely makes the novel more interesting, not gonna lie!
Pearson does a great job at establishing her characters motives/voice and making them distinct from one another (especially the 2 main male characters) Another plus!
However, reading Lia’s voice (1st person POV) sadly wasn’t too original. Her personality/voice felt very similar to other heroine’s I’d read before! Though I will admit when secrets are revealed and I nearned toward the end, I did enjoy Lia a lot better + felt more connected to her as a character!
Along the note of plot/characters the tone of this novel gave me serious Winners Curse vibes! I couldn’t help but compare Kestrel to Lia, the romance, etc., that made me feel like I’d read this story before!
(Let me know if you thought that too, if you’ve read TWC + this novel!)
The plot definitely kept me turning the page! I was always wondering what would happen next!
In the beginning, Lia flees her kingdom to escape her arranged marriage!
It was great to see her come to learn more about the cities/towns in her kingdom + learning who she was away from her royal lineage/ royal position!
With her friend Pauline, they reach a small town (Terravin) & they become waitresses at a local inn.
She meets two travelers who we come to know as the assassin & the prince! They both begin to develop feelings for her and there is mystery + intrigue along the way! She comes to learn she is being hunted, so she keeps her guard up, while also just trying to live her own life!
However, when it becomes too much for she flees and comes to know who the real assassin is!
The rest of the last 1/4 of the book is her understanding the assassin and trying to think of a plan to escape!
Then the prince comes to save her & they both stay as captives of the assassin & his army!
I will admit regardless of those issues, I am definitely interested to see where the plot is headed!
Overall the plot weaves together in quite an interesting way! While the romance is quite apparent, the story itself, with mystery and politics that get established throughout the story definitely will keep you wondering what happens next!