Monday, April 3, 2017

Book Review: Cage of Darkness by Jennifer Anne Davis

Cage of Darkness (Reign of Secrets #2) by Jennifer Anne Davis
Cage of Darkness
Reign of Secrets #2
Jennifer Anne Davis
Reign Publishing
YA Fantasy
April 4, 2017
Blurb:
While traveling to Fren, Allyssa and Odar are hijacked by a ruthless assassin who divulges a stunning secret that changes everything.

Trying to come to terms with this newfound revelation, Allyssa is taken to Russek and delivered into the hands of a malicious and twisted royal family. She finds herself an unwilling pawn in a risky political game that will either end with her death or the annihilation of her beloved kingdom. Unsure of where the lies end and the truth begins, she must survive the brutal family and escape the fortified castle, all the while coming to grips with her feelings for Odar.

In a kingdom filled with darkness, Allyssa enters a game where one wrong move means death, secrets hide around each corner, and it will take every ounce of cunning she has to survive. 

My Review:
After the deaths of both her friend Grevik and the man she thought was her betrothed, Prince Odar - not to mention finding out that the man she had known as Jarvik (and fallen for) was really Prince Odar, Allyssa and Odar find themselves kidnapped and held captive by an assassin who turns out to be a sort-of prince of Russek.

Their kidnapper, "Prince" Soma has been tasked with bringing Allyssa and Odar to his mother, Queen Jana (who is also Allyssa's long lost aunt) who wants revenge against Allyssa's parents.

At the Russek palace, Allyssa is tortured while Odar pretends to still have feelings for Jana's daughter, Shelene - and his act is more than convincing.

Is there any way out of the hell Allyssa finds herself in? Could aligning herself with Russek's crown prince Kerdan to kill Jana and her children lead to Allyssa's freedom? Or is she once again trusting the wrong person? And if she does make it out, will Odar still love and want to marry her in the end?

I will admit, I did not finish the first book in this trilogy, Cage of Deceit but I did skim the ending and it made Cage of Darkness sound promising. And the beginning of Cage of Darkness was somewhat okay, I had a good feeling about it.

Then I ran into the same issue I had with the first book - I really, really couldn't stand Allyssa. Most of the time she acts like a whiny, annoying, petulant pre-teen who acts up when she doesn't get her way. And in demanding that Odar follows her ideas to escape their captor at the beginning of the book they just ended up getting recaptured over and over again which was ridiculous and boring. And she kept bringing up things like "if her soldiers talked to her that way" she'd never tolerate it - which again sounds like an immature spoiled brat thing to keep saying.

For a supposed fantasy novel this book was surprisingly lacking in the fantasy department. Perhaps I've been spoiled by the Throne of Glass and ACOTAR series, by Ever the Hunted, and even by The Bone Witch (and so many others) but where was the magic??? Or any other fantasy element for that matter??? Oh and the non-swearing swearwords drove me absolutely insane. Blimey, bloody hell, wimp, pansy, and bloke me to death, why don't you? Seriously, if you want to keep it "clean" then I guess just don't have any kind of cursing because that just sounds like a little kid experimenting with curse words.

Overall, I did not like this book, not at all. It became torture to try and read through it so I started skimming instead and let me say, the beginning was slightly promising and the end was slightly promising but the middle was snooze-worthy. And the book is listed as YA but I'd say it's more like Middle Grade, which might be why I couldn't get into it.

The verdict: Would I run out and read the final book in the trilogy? Nope.

My rating:
 2 of 5 Stars

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