Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Review: Frozen Tides by Morgan Rhodes

Frozen Tides by Morgan Rhodes
Series: Falling Kingdoms #4
Genre: Fantasy
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Rebels, royals, and monsters wage war over the Mytican throne in the shocking fourth book of the Falling Kingdoms series, from New York Times bestselling author Morgan Rhodes.

This is the fourth book in a series - a series, I might add, that I have had ups and downs with right from the start. I almost DNF'd the first book about halfway through. But, once I decided to finish it, I actually liked it. Books two and three just seemed to improve consistently for me. But book four…

I was off to very shaky footing right from the start. I don't know if this was only what I thought I wanted to read, but at the beginning, I wasn't feeling it. But, before long, I had gotten sucked into the story.

Then I started loosing interest each time the POV changed. Now, I love books with multiple, third person POV's. Always have. However, with this book it seemed like everyone and their brother had to have a POV. The first books were almost entirely told from our four main character's perspective. The only time it wasn't was if something important was happening and they weren't around.

I was okay with that. I might have been okay with this, too, if it actually felt needed - of if that's where the story started. (Because not long ago I finished a book that had about seven different POV's and it was awesome.)

But, really, it felt like nothing was happening. And then, on page 85, I was treated to this quote:

"She barely survived the beating she received for birthing a girl."

In this book, the world has been expanding. We've started actually dealing with the Kraeshian Empire - two of it's royalty had been introduced last book.

I won't say that this series has been feminist, because it hasn't. But it's also been pretty inoffensive. At least, nothing indicated we were headed for such sexism.

The Kraeshian Empire is this HUGE empire that is systematically conquering … well, everyone else. And they are a sexist empire where women are pretty much property only good to birth sons. Not daughters.

In this country it is perfectly within a father's rights to drown his daughter any time he wants. But he only gets one chance because if she survives, he can not attempt to kill her again.

We do have a young girl who survived just such an attempt on her life. And I totally get where the author's going with this. This has all the setup for a 'strong woman in a world where all others are beaten down' and I do admire her for being the way she is - except she still craves the approval of a father that tried to kill her when she was young.

But…what about all the other women? The nameless, faceless masses in this country that are unimportant to the story and that are beaten to death for birthing a girl, or that are drowned during childhood by an irate father? This is not what I call fun reading.

And on a different note: how stupid can you get? You're pretty much always at war. You beat your women for birthing girls, you drown the baby girls and …. This empire is going to be able to still have a population? The hell?

I don't know who came up with this idea, but it's the stupidest thing I think I've ever read!

It makes no sense! Was it just added to make the readers go 'oh, how gritty' because, seriously?

And there's a couple of scenes that… well, I wasn't taking very seriously because this rebel that just happens to be a teenage girl has to wear a disguise. The decision - by the two teen boys with her - is to dress her up in a dress. That's right, she's so well known that she has to wear a disguise and the 'perfect' way to keep anyone from recognizing her is to wear a dress!

I was doing okay, taking it as a joke, until I was treated to this:

"Lovely gown, by the way. A simple yet effective costume for one who's clearly worn nothing but trousers all her life."

Then I realized that this is actually supposed to be taken seriously and actually supposed to work and what the hell!? A dress is the brilliant disguise? Really? There's so many things wrong with this, I can't even get into it.

And there was way too much back and forth crap. Too much 'I love you but I don't' 'I want you but we can't' and I'm left suddenly realizing that this has turned into a soap opera.

I don't know if I'll be continuing this series or not.