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448 pages, Hardcover
First published August 18, 2015
Patrons are people either born in the old empire of Saro or descended from ancestors who emigrated from Saro to Efea any time in the last hundred years. The law forbids people of Saroese ancestry from marrying the native people of Efea, who are called Commoners.Right. So theirs is a forbidden love story, a beautiful Commoner woman and her brave Patron lover (because of course, they're not married). Daddy is an honored soldier, who has been deeply faithful and loving and loyal to his lower-class wife and children despite all the criticism he has received. The sisters and their mother live in relative luxury in the warmth of a loving home. But they've got to behave themselves, even more so because of the tenuousness of their parents' forbidden love, in order to not bring dishonor upon their names.
Girls like us have to be more decorous and well-mannered than the daughters of other officers because our father is a lowborn army captain fighting to make his fortune through valor and bold leadership. Which one of us would dare jeopardize his steady, hard-fought climb through the ranks by indulging in disreputable behavior?GEE, I'LL GIVE YOU ONE GUESS.
“It will take some days to set up proper victory games, so tomorrow’s procession will finish with the usual weekly Fives. Lord Ottonor has requested our family’s presence in his balcony box for the occasion.”Disaster! Disaster!
I shut my eyes as the full scope of the disaster blows down over me. My plans, my hard work, and the scraps of money I have saved for months: all washed away.
“Oh, Father! I have so often dreamed of having the chance to attend the games at the Royal Fives Court!” breathes Amaya.So she's going to be forced to be with her family in their box during the competition...surely she wouldn't plan on doing anything SO STUPID AS TO SNEAK OUT TO COMPETE IN THE COMPETITION WHILE EVERYONE'S EYES ARE ON HER.
Instead of answering I look at the rug. I have failed Father in the worst way: I have caused him to lose face. He knows it, and so do I.SURELY SHE WOULDN'T BE THE CAUSE OF HER FAMILY'S DOOM.
“You did not want your father to know you run the Fives, is that it?”
“Yes, my lord.” I finally look up.
Father is actually too stunned to speak as the extent of my insubordination hits him.
I stumble, overcome by fear and grief, and barely catch myself against the door that has locked me away from my mother and sisters. The whole world has broken apart around me.And you know what the stupid fucking crux of this is? Jessamy gets what she wanted after her family is destroyed. She gets to compete in the stupid Fives. She gets her dream thanks to her own stupidity and the betrayal of her family. I don't want to continue reading about a girl who benefits from her own family's downfall. The end.
The law forbids people of Saroese ancestry from marrying the native people of Efea, who are called Commoners.
“Did you fall in love with her at first sight?”
“No one can fall in love at first sight. Love is built over the years, not snapped into existence like a flame that can be easily extinguished. But I was so struck with her beauty and the pure joy in her laugh that something deep within me changed…”
I really did not want to DNF yet another book. I struggled through this one and... started to slumber after a few chapters. Two days like this and I am done.
This is how it should be.
This is what I live for.
All MC cares about is playing a game. She is selfish.
Just once I want to run a real trial and pretend to be a different girl with a different life.
I push her away and jump up to pace. Frustration burns right through me. “How do you think I feel, training for years without ever having a chance to actually compete in a real trial? I have run the Fives a hundred times—a thousand times!—on practice courts and in practice trials. Now my one chance to experience a real trial is ruined. My one chance!”
All her father cares about is how to raise above his position.
The worst thing of all is that I understand why he did it. When you run the Fives you make choices in order to win. He will soon have achieved the highest honor a man of his birth could ever dream of. And he has thrown us away to get it.
The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.
This book is about selfish people and plus it is boring. The pace is too slow. There are books that lack action, but they are still awesome, because they have great MCs and you like to be in their heads. In this case, I did not like or connect with MC. She was just a selfish 16 year girl, who wants to get her candy, I get it, all of us were young and wanted something regardless of consequences. But she made the same mistake time and again never learning from it. I just didn't like her at all, and considering this book is from her POV, I couldn't coexist with her inner thoughts.
The world building did not impress me at all. The language was good, but at times I felt like watching some theatrical performance. Not one character in this book made me sympathize with her/him. The father is a separate topic at all. How can you abandon four daughters and pregnant woman for glory? What kind of man does it? And he claimed to love them! The logic behind characters' actions was lame. I would say I disliked everything in this book, but I just felt indifferent to their fates and hardship. They all got what they deserved.
I hate villains who are just evil. They feel one dimensional. Today's YA can offer plenty of complicated villains, I do not believe in white and black, there are gray places in every one. This book failed to show me a complicated villain.
Love interest was spineless. I can't even remember anything distinguish about him. He just was, because genre requires a love interest.
I wouldn't say this book was terrible. Many people will find it good, but in this case every one should decide for him/herself what kind of heroes and story they like. For me, it's just not my cup of tea.