Top critical review
Reviewed in Canada on August 9, 2018
Without question, this novel was one of my most anticipated reads of this year. I loved the original "Remnant Chronicles" trilogy and was so excited to hear the announcement that the series would be continuing (albeit with different main characters). I wanted more from this world and I wanted more of Mary E. Pearson's writing.
I don't think I could be more disappointed to say that I didn't really enjoy this novel and am giving it 2.5 stars. I don't think I went into this novel with overly high expectations or was comparing it to my enjoyment to the original trilogy either. It was just not the story for me.
First, let me talk about the length of this book. I enjoy and devour big books quite regularly ('I like big books and I cannot lie'). I appreciate big books and the ability to be able to fully immerse yourself in the world, the characters, and the details. However, when a book is unnecessarily long, that is when I have a problem.
In my opinion, this book was way too long. Way longer than it needed to be. I found myself losing interest in the story quite regularly because I was just getting...bored. I hate to use that word but it's true. There would be moments that would hook me but then the story would lapse into chapters of filler that didn't need to be there and it took away from the story as a whole. As I read an ARC and have seen that there are less pages in the final copy, I can only hope that some of the unnecessary filler was eliminated.
Unfortunately, there were many things that I just did not like about this novel. It was slower paced (to the point of a turtle crawl), I didn't really like the storyline, and I didn't particularly like either of the main characters or their relationship. As I typically mention, I don't need to have 'likeable' characters to enjoy a novel, but for this one the reader was obviously meant to favour these two.
The two main points that I did enjoy about this novel was the cameo of certain characters from the original trilogy (I'm not going to say who or the placement in the novel) as it was subtle and done well. This novel doesn't require the original trilogy to be read beforehand but with that cameo, there was a nod to those books and some of the original characters.
As well, again I have to be vague to avoid any sort of spoilers, but.....that ending. It was the strongest part of the whole book! I think the ending gives the second novel in this series potential. Many things could happen from this point forward in the story and I am intrigued to see where it goes. I'm desperately hopeful that the next novel turns it around for me and I enjoy this series so much more.
***Thank you to Raincoast Books for sending me an ARC of this novel in exchange for an honest review***