Catherine's Reviews > Rebel

Rebel by Zoe Archer
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Oct 17, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: adventure, bad-childhood, class-difference, fantasy-paranormal-sci-fi, magic-mystical-ability, read-2011, romance, series, steampunk, were-shifter, zombie, historical
Read from February 13 to 15, 2011 — I own a copy

I had a bit of a hard time getting into this book. It was still interesting, but I was very much aware that I was reading a book instead of being sucked into a story. About the time Nathan and Astrid started to open up to each other was when I started to get into it. I don't know why, but I couldn't seem to connect to their characters. Their past tragedies and their budding connection with each other wasn't resonating with me. I knew about them because I was told about them, not because I was really feeling it.

This book seemed to have a different tone than the previous two. I had it pointed out to me by a friend that there was less humor, and she was right. The tone was more quiet and somber. The characters were falling in love, but they both were rather withdrawn so their connection was quieter.

Other than the obvious factor of Astrid being a member (or prior member) of the Blades of the Rose and Catullus showing up, this one didn't seem strongly tied to the previous books. Perhaps it's because we never met Astrid before, we only heard about her in passing. Whatever it is, I think this one would be able to stand on its own well without having read the previous books.

In the beginning as we were getting Astrid's thoughts about her husband I saw a lot of grief there, of course, but I also noticed some stray thoughts here and there that seemed to subtly be grooming the reader to see the new love interest, Nathan, as a better match than the previous spouse.
Few possessed enough spirit to gain her respect. Even Michael, much as she had loved him, wavered at times. Not Lesperance. He was her equal. In many ways. A frightening prospect.

See? That was only on page 66 and there were a lot of little comments like that. (Lesperance is Nathan's last name by the way.) Possibly the comments weren't meant that way, but after years of reading romances I am particularly sensitive to the habit authors have of devaluing the previous relationship just enough to make the new guy not have any competition. How can you have a competition with a dead man, you ask? I don't know, I've been wondering that for years.

Another thing that I noticed in this book was that even though we saw a lot more of Catullus than we did in the previous two, we didn't have as many steampunk gadgets as we did in the previous books. It's not a huge negative to me, it's just something I noticed.

Despite liking it less than the previous two books, I still thought it was a fun book. It isn't going to be a favorite of mine, but the action was a lot of fun and Astrid was a strong heroine. I also liked that Nathan's magic opened up an unexpected avenue in the author's world. I didn't think that we'd see any of that in this series, but it was definitely interesting to explore.

After getting to know Catullus a little better here I am even more excited to read his book. Hopefully we'll be able to end the series on a high note.
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Reading Progress

02/13 page 1
0.0% "I can't believe I forgot about this book! I hope it's a good one." 17 comments
02/13 page 86
23.0% "Different tone from the others so far. I was surprised by what exactly his magic was." 13 comments
02/15 page 132
36.0% "

She turned her head to stare at him. "What?"

"You called me Nathan, not Lesperance."

Astrid covered her face with one shaking hand. "After we just faced rapids so fierce they would make a deity cry, that's what concerns you?"

"My needs are simple."

02/15 page 218
59.0% "

"Insanity." He brushed his lips over hers.

She returned the kiss. "No better way to live."

"Or die," he countered.

Her look was surprisingly thoughtful, considering she had just been dangling over frozen death minutes earlier. Thoughtful, but the darkness that once might have overtaken her did not appear, and that gladdened him. She murmured, "That's the price for an extraordinary life."

02/15 page 313
85.0% ""Your fight is my fight," he said. Stark and direct, his words filled her with unsparing joy. "Your cause is mine. And more than that." He brushed her lips with his. "More than that. Your heart is my heart. I love you, Astrid. My place is with you. Always with you."" 4 comments
08/23 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-9)

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Katyana I am glad you got into it! Great review! :)

Catherine Thanks!

message 7: by Quinn (new) - added it

Quinn Great review, Catherine.

"I had a bit of a hard time getting into this book. It was still interesting, but I was very much aware that I was reading a book instead of being sucked into a story." That makes me a little nervous about reading this one. I felt that way with Warrior when most others didn't. I guess that means I'll either love this one, or it will be a real chore to read. Hopefully the former. :)

Catherine Probably you'll love this one because Warrior was my favorite so far. Maybe we're opposite in this series. :)

message 5: by Beanbag (new)

Beanbag Love This one is next up for me. I had the same reaction to Warrior, where it took me a long time to really get into it. And it happened in about the same place -- when they finally opened up to each other.

Great review, Catherine. I'll go into it with my eyes open. :)

PS: I'm going to miss the steampunk gadgets, too, though. :-/

Catherine Beanbag wrote: "PS: I'm going to miss the steampunk gadgets, too, though. :-/"

I thought they were a really fun touch to the series.

Hopefully you'll enjoy this one.

message 3: by AH (new) - added it

AH Great review, Catherine. I plan to read this series sometime soon (I think I put it in a book challenge).

Did you know L'esperance means hope in French - wonder if that changes the character a little bit?

Catherine I did not know that. It would be a cute play on words if the author did it on purpose. Nathan gave Astrid hope that she really wasn't only a husk of a woman.

message 1: by AH (new) - added it

AH Very cute play on words.

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