by Amy Tintera
Rating: 5 stars
WOW! I’ve been wanting to read this book for ages,* and I was NOT disappointed! It’s also taken ages for me to get around to actually reviewing it. So, oops. But whatever, at least I am actually reviewing it.
Although that cover. It has a super cool design, but the colours are SO boring. I totally covered it up with my text. I didn’t even mean to, but I can’t say I really mind. Because WHY?!?! It could have been so pretty, but I don’t think silver and white and gold look very good together. So I’m sort of mad.
*A couple of months really… but it felt like ages.
I loved the plot of Ruined. Em is desperate to get revenge on the royal family of Lera, for killing her parents, and taking her sister prisoner. She disguises herself as the prince’s betrothed, so that she can get into the castle to spy on/kill the royal family. Then of course, she falls in love with the prince.
It’s not exactly the most original plot, but it was very well done, and I admit, it’s a plot line I love. Every. Single. Time.
Also, although it isn’t the most original concept, there was also some fairly unique aspects to the plot. And I just really liked it.
I also found it really cool how there’s two different sides to it, and yet I don’t think either side is really wrong. I can’t even decide which side I’m rooting for. And I love that.
I thought the world was pretty well developed. There wasn’t a ton of description, but since it took place mostly in the castle and forest, I had a pretty decent picture in my head anyway. It didn’t really need the description.
And the rest of it was amazingly done. I felt like I had a good grasp on their politics and customs, and I wasn’t constantly getting all the countries confused like I normally do. So that was nice.
I also thought the Ruined were cool, and I would really like to know more about them. I think we’ll learn more in the next book, at least that was the impression I got.
I ADORED the characters in this! They were awesome, and wonderful, and very funny! And I just loved them so much!
Em – I really liked Em, she was very determined to help her sister, and she had a really hard time controlling her temper around the people who had killed her parents. Which wasn’t the best thing when she was spying on them, and they didn’t realize she had any reason to dislike them. But she couldn’t stop herself from bursting out with her true opinions, and I really liked her for that.
Cas – Cas is lovely, and sort of hilarious. He’s not particularly happy that his parents are making him marry, and he makes this abundantly clear. At the same time, he made an effort to be nice to Em, and tbh, he’s easily the nicest character in the book.
Galo – He’s a palace guard, and Cas’s best friend. the banter between the two of them is wonderful.
(Galo has just beaten Cas in a sword fight)
“Dead. Feeling tired, Your Highness”
“I am a bit tired. It must be from winning the first four times.”
“I like to lull you into a fake sense of security first. Then I really start trying.”
They’re like this for the whole book, and I love it!
Aren – Aren is one of the ruined, and he comes to the castle with Em. Like everybody else in this, he’s hilarious. I loved him from very early on. Like, quite possibly before I knew the main character’s name.
“Do I look like a Vallos guard? Wait. It’s more realistic when I swing my sword around like I have no idea how to use it. Now I look good, right?”
I don’t think he’s impressed.
Damian – I really like Damian. He’s… I don’t know how to describe him. I just really, really like him. Also, like every other character I’ve mentioned, he’s funny.
“I’ve died, haven’t I? Always figured there was punishment waiting for me after death. Your face is my punishment, isn’t it?”
So, so polite Damian. And I’ve put in way more quotes than I meant too… I only actually intended to use one of these… but they’re just so funny. And also very rude. (Seriously, all the characters in this are super rude. But, like, great.) So I ended up with a ton of quotes. Oh well.
Iria – I’m pretty sure Iria* lives to annoy Em, and honestly, she can be pretty annoying at times. But at the same time, I sort of love her. She’s just actually a really great character.
Olivia – Olivia is Em’s sister, and while she’s doesn’t come in until close to the end, she is a really memorable character. I was sort of expecting a sweet little girl, but Olivia is NOT sweet. She’s actually sort of creepy and awful. And I don’t like her at all, but wow is she an amazingly done character.
So I just named like seven characters, because the characters are all awesome, and tbh, there were a couple more characters I could have talked about, but I decided it was really time to stop.
*I just spelled this as Iris… whoops!
I WANT BOOK TWO!!! Yes, this is a valid, and completely coherent description of my feelings about this book. Don’t question this.
This was a wonderful book, and I desperately want the sequel. Or just to reread this one. Ideally both. Basically, I just want more about these wonderful characters. And, you know, I sort of want to know what happens.