Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes
Published by Razorbill on March 11, 2014
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Magic, Fiction
Pages: 412 Format: Paperback Source: Library
AURANOS – Privileged Princess Cleo is forced to confront violence for the first time in her life when a shocking murder sets her kingdom on a path to collapse.
LIMEROS – The king’s son, Magnus, must plan each footstep with shrewd, sharp guile if he is to earn his powerful father’s trust, while his sister, Lucia, discovers a terrifying secret about her heritage that will change everything.
PAELSIA – Rebellious Jonas lashes out against the forces of oppression that have kept his country cruelly impoverished—and finds himself the leader of a people’s revolution centuries in the making.
Witches, if found, are put to death, and Watchers, immortal beings who take the shape of hawks to visit the human world, have been almost entirely forgotten. A vicious power struggle quickly escalates to war, and these four young people collide against each other and the rise of elementia, the magic that can topple kingdoms and crown a ruler in the same day.
Magic is waning in the lands of Mytica and the three kingdoms, Limeros, Paelsia, and Auranos hover on the brink of conflict. Set in motion by the folly of young ones, power shifts, war begins, and forgotten legends are thrown to the forefront. Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes had so much potential. A fantasy premise, lost magic, warring nations, and young characters that would be in the middle of it all. Unfortunately this book just did not deliver.
First of all, this whole first book felt rushed. It was much more a set up for the rest of the series then a story in its own right. The writing seemed clipped, not very descriptive, and just trying to get from point A to B. There was no flow to it. Not to mention the fact that this book was ridiculously predictable. I could pinpoint moments that were going to happen even before I read them. There was no excitement in the story.
The characters in Falling Kingdoms fell short for me as well. I don’t think I could pick a favorite, not because I have too many, but because I have no care for them. All of the MCs were so self absorbed, so single minded. Even with different backstories, they all felt the same. There were quite a few deaths in this book, but I didn’t feel any emotional investment. I think I was only mildly upset by one. If Rhodes wanted to rely so heavily on death and destruction, it should mean something.
What did I like about this book? I was mostly intrigued by how magic would come into play. I wanted more about the mechanics of elementia which I hope will be explored in future books. Honestly The Watchers might have been the most interesting part of this story and they play such a small role. Seeing through the eyes of hawks is such a cool setup. I think they will end up being more active in the world.
Overall, Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes was kind of a disappointment for me. This book had so much promise but in the end fell flat. I had a hard time connecting with any of it. I’ve heard that the second book in the series, Rebel Spring, is much better so I’ll be continuing on with that one in the hopes that Rhodes can turn it around. I guess you’ll just have to wait and see.
Have you read Falling Kingdoms? What were your thoughts on the first installment? Is Rebel Spring better? Let me know in the comments below!