Friday, 27 January 2017

Non-Heir by Rachel E. Carter - non-spoiler review

Hi booklovers

A couple of weeks ago I signed up for Rachel E. Carter's newsletter and I got the prequel novella to her Black Mage series for free. This doesn't affect my opinion of the story.

I read this book for the Of Wonderland book club on Goodreads.

Before I start I want to say this: I think this is the first time I've rated a novella so high :-)

Title: Non-Heir
Author: Rachel E. Carter
Genre: YA, fantasy
Format: e-novella (free)
We follow the young prince Darren during his childhood and teenage years while growing up as the non-heir to the throne. Being three years younger than his brother Blayne and the second son has always made him stand in his brother's shadow. We get to see Darren growing up, his training and him trying to stand up to his father.

-Darren: He's used to being regarded as less than his brother which makes him determined to be the best at everything training he gets. It also makes him want to stand up to his father, which usually doesn't end well. We get to see Darren grow - both literally and figuratively speaking - throughout this novella, but we also get to see him become extremely cocky and arrogant. Okay, I can kind of understand why he's acting like that, but I hope that this won't influence my reading experience of 'First Year', because by the end of 'Non-Heir' I was ready to smack him on the head - multiple times!!

-Blayne: I didn't really care for him, but maybe that's because we don't get to see that much of him. And the things we do get to see, aren't very positive. Being the heir puts all the attention and responibility on him, but that doesn't mean that he has to be so cold-hearted and cruel.

-The king: What a cruel man. Darren refers to him as 'the monster' and he's not wrong. Some of the things that he did to his sons were so brutal, both physically and mentally, they made me queasy.

-Eve: I really like her, she is feisty, strong - both in body and mind - and she wears her heart on her sleeve.
I'm usually not a big fan of the LGBT side character, because that character is sometimes put in the story for the sole purpose of having such a character. But in this case I think her being a lesbian prevents the oh so typical YA trope of the love triangle from happening, so that's good.

-Ella: We don't get to see a lot of her yet, but I have a feeling that might change in 'First Year' and I'm looking forward to it.
Since she is the girl Darren might have fallen in love with if his brother hadn't interfered, I'm hoping this won't become a love triangle with Ryiah. Although, judging on how she loathes Darren because of what Blayne did, I'm hoping it won't.

-Ryiah: She is a lowborn girl that Darren meets on his way to the Academy. Being the arrogant prick that he is by the time they meet eachother, he instantly despises her, but like Eve Ryiah is strong-minded and she isn't intimidated by the fact that he is a prince.

-Priscilla: Urgh, she is such an arrogant girl, only thinking about herself and how to please her father. That being said, I liked how once it was clear that she didn't really want Darren - she was only doing what her father wanted - she seemed more honest.

*Overall rating:
I usually don't rate novella's this high, because although they are usually a nice addition to the story, it always feels like they are lacking. But not this one. I really liked that we got an insight into Darren's childhood / teen years and that the story in the first book moves on from there. Maybe that's why I liked it so much: it builds up to the first story so the things that started in the novella will (hopefully) be continued in First Year.

One thing I'm scared of is that my opinion of Darren will affect my further reading, because he is so arrogant and I'm not sure I like that. Oh well, we'll see when I start First Year. (I just read a comment from the author herself saying she wrote this novella partly to explain why Darren is such an ass, so maybe it won't affect my reading :-) )

The writing is easy to get into and the story is fast-paced.

Lastly: take a look at the cover: it is stunning!!
Have you read this novella or any of the other books in the series? Let me know in the comments.

Bye for now


No comments:

Post a Comment