Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Blood Song - Rhiannon Hart

Synopsis: I wanted to turn but I was held captive by the song on the wind. I’m coming, I told the voices. Please, wait for me.
When her sister becomes betrothed to a prince in a northern nation, Zeraphina’s only consolations are that her loyal animal companions are by her side – and that her burning hunger to travel north is finally being sated.
Already her black hair and pale eyes mark her out as different, but now Zeraphina must be even more careful to keep her secret safe. Craving blood is not considered normal behaviour for anyone, let alone a princess. So when the king’s advisor, Rodden, seems to know more about her condition than she does, Zeraphina is determined to find out more. 
Zeraphina must be willing to sacrifice everything if she’s to uncover the truth – but what if the truth is beyond her worst nightmares? (From Goodreads)

I got off to a slow start with Blood Song. It starts out with Zeraphina at home in her run down castle in her freezing cold country. In the beginning all we know is that she craves blood, feels drawn to the North, and she has an overbearing mother and a pure white princess of a sister who is her exact opposite. But not much happens in the first few chapters other than travel arrangements to go to meet Zeraphina's sister's prince of a fiance.

The beginning feels a bit simplistic in both world building and character development. I don't think I connected with Zeraphina until much later in the book. Her mother didn't make a lot of sense to me because she's the queen of her country, she's the one in charge, yet all she worries about are dresses and the way her daughters present themselves. She's more of a Mrs. Bennet than a Queen Elizabeth and that felt a bit incongruous.  I actually think what kept me interested in the beginning were Zeraphina's animals - a cat named Leap and an eagle named Griffin that follow her around wherever she goes.

Things started getting more interesting once there was actual movement. But still it wasn't until the last 70 pages or so that I found I was really into the story. Most of what came before was Zeraphina trying to figure out who she is and what secrets the king's advisor, Rodden, is hiding. Yet once she actually ends up in the country to the north that she's felt so drawn to and finally learns everything things start getting really good.

It's near the end that this book really pulls out the fantasy adventure aspects and Zeraphina's personality is drawn out. The things people fear in the world are truly terrifying and the land they live in is dark but vivid. The concept behind her blood cravings turns out to be very interesting (and I was very happy that they weren't vampire things, they were just vampire-like). I also really like the idea that people just accept the way the world is, and have no idea that there is a force out there making it that way. And I love that when Zeraphina finds this out, she does something about it.

I actually felt like as I was reading, Rhiannon Hart was growing stronger as a writer. I felt like I was watching her own progression. So the beginning was a little weak, but by the end I was entranced. If I get the chance, I'll definitely pick up the second book in the series. Because, now that I know Zeraphina and Rodden a little better, I feel invested in what happens to them.

I'm so glad I got a chance to read this Australian book, so thanks so much to Dani @ Refracted Light for organizing the book tour!

1 comment:

  1. Hmm, I don't think I'm going to go oout and grab this one, but I'll keep an eye on Hart. Maybe she'll keep improving!

    ReplyDelete

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Blood Song - Rhiannon Hart

Synopsis: I wanted to turn but I was held captive by the song on the wind. I’m coming, I told the voices. Please, wait for me.
When her sister becomes betrothed to a prince in a northern nation, Zeraphina’s only consolations are that her loyal animal companions are by her side – and that her burning hunger to travel north is finally being sated.
Already her black hair and pale eyes mark her out as different, but now Zeraphina must be even more careful to keep her secret safe. Craving blood is not considered normal behaviour for anyone, let alone a princess. So when the king’s advisor, Rodden, seems to know more about her condition than she does, Zeraphina is determined to find out more. 
Zeraphina must be willing to sacrifice everything if she’s to uncover the truth – but what if the truth is beyond her worst nightmares? (From Goodreads)

I got off to a slow start with Blood Song. It starts out with Zeraphina at home in her run down castle in her freezing cold country. In the beginning all we know is that she craves blood, feels drawn to the North, and she has an overbearing mother and a pure white princess of a sister who is her exact opposite. But not much happens in the first few chapters other than travel arrangements to go to meet Zeraphina's sister's prince of a fiance.

The beginning feels a bit simplistic in both world building and character development. I don't think I connected with Zeraphina until much later in the book. Her mother didn't make a lot of sense to me because she's the queen of her country, she's the one in charge, yet all she worries about are dresses and the way her daughters present themselves. She's more of a Mrs. Bennet than a Queen Elizabeth and that felt a bit incongruous.  I actually think what kept me interested in the beginning were Zeraphina's animals - a cat named Leap and an eagle named Griffin that follow her around wherever she goes.

Things started getting more interesting once there was actual movement. But still it wasn't until the last 70 pages or so that I found I was really into the story. Most of what came before was Zeraphina trying to figure out who she is and what secrets the king's advisor, Rodden, is hiding. Yet once she actually ends up in the country to the north that she's felt so drawn to and finally learns everything things start getting really good.

It's near the end that this book really pulls out the fantasy adventure aspects and Zeraphina's personality is drawn out. The things people fear in the world are truly terrifying and the land they live in is dark but vivid. The concept behind her blood cravings turns out to be very interesting (and I was very happy that they weren't vampire things, they were just vampire-like). I also really like the idea that people just accept the way the world is, and have no idea that there is a force out there making it that way. And I love that when Zeraphina finds this out, she does something about it.

I actually felt like as I was reading, Rhiannon Hart was growing stronger as a writer. I felt like I was watching her own progression. So the beginning was a little weak, but by the end I was entranced. If I get the chance, I'll definitely pick up the second book in the series. Because, now that I know Zeraphina and Rodden a little better, I feel invested in what happens to them.

I'm so glad I got a chance to read this Australian book, so thanks so much to Dani @ Refracted Light for organizing the book tour!

1 comment:

  1. Hmm, I don't think I'm going to go oout and grab this one, but I'll keep an eye on Hart. Maybe she'll keep improving!

    ReplyDelete