I Feel Deceived: The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

 

In this timeless new trilogy about love and sacrifice, a princess must find her place in a reborn world.

In a society steeped in tradition, Princess Lia’s life follows a preordained course. As First Daughter, she is expected to have the revered gift of sight—but she doesn’t—and she knows her parents are perpetrating a sham when they arrange her marriage to secure an alliance with a neighboring kingdom—to a prince she has never met.

On the morning of her wedding, Lia flees to a distant village. She settles into a new life, hopeful when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deception abounds, and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—even as she finds herself falling in love

Source: GoodReads

Deception is right.

I was really excited for this book.  Really, really, excited to the point I preordered it even though I never have read any of Pearson’s work before.  Because that blurb.

God, that blurb.

In hindsight I should’ve know better.

I mean, there were hints that there was going to be an annoying love triangle or at least allusions to an annoying love triangle in the blurb.  But I sort of shrugged it off given the set up.

Man, that is a good set up.

A prince and assassin as your two competing love interests and a runaway princess.  Can you get more awesome?

Apparently, you can because I’ve read a lot of books that have better stories with much more blase premises.

So, what went wrong.  Well, there were two big things pacing and characters.

I think overall, the pacing was the biggest issue.  This book is long.  Almost five hundred pages.  A few years ago I would’ve told you I loved big books but now….I’m starting to think that smaller books might be better in some ways because hey…at least the page count is contained.

With The Kiss of Deception the book just dragged.  In high fantasies (I’m considering it a high fantasy since there was a stupid map on the inside of the book) I expect a slow pace, but this was ridiculous.  Honestly, the first two thirds of the book were pretty much useless.  Pages that we really didn’t need were just there.  And I honestly got bored.  Bored.  Bored. Bored.

I mean, I could care less about quasi medieval waitress-ing.  I call it quasi medieval because I think the book was suppose to be set in post apocalyptic America (at least I think that’s what I’ve read somewhere), but I really didn’t get that feeling from the book.  It read like any fantasy.

A very boring fantasy.

Grant it, the last third of the  novel was marginally interesting.  Once, you know, stuff started happening.

Now for the characters:

Lia:

Well, she tried to be interesting.

That’s something, right?

To be fair, I did appreciate what we’re told about Lia.  But what I saw…really not that different from any other princess character?  In fact, I’d say Belle, Jasmine, Mulan, Rapunzel, and any other modern day Disney princess character has something.

Actually, she’s sort of like Ariel.

Except I don’t think she’d sell her voice to a sea witch for a boy (at least not yet).

She is pretty incompetent though for a girl who supposedly knows how to use a dagger.  And for a princess who’s trying to keep a low profile.  Well, she doesn’t do that great of a job.

Like Ariel, Lia is pretty bland.  She’s nice.  YA attractive.  And nice.  But anything else…..

The Love Interests:

Before I go into both love interests, I will say that Pearson did a pretty good job keeping the mystery of who was the prince and who was the assassin.  And I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised to see how this played out.  Overall, this was probably the best aspect of the novel.  However, the characters themselves, that’s another story.

Both of them were bland beyond belief.  I’m sure in future stories they might be developed.  But this should NOT be a love triangle. One of the characters should not be in the love interest territory at all.  Regardless of  how attractive Pearson tries to make him sound physically.  There are just some things that make me go no to love interests.

Unfortunately, since there are two more books there is a possibility that Pearson is going to go there.

I know.

I think that I’m on the fence about this book.  There are a lot of things that really work well for this book, but at the same time there are some things that just don’t work.  I’m sort of unsure about whether or not I’m going to continue this series.  I could see it going either one of two ways.  Which honestly, makes me unimpressed.

Rating: B-

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