Hi guys! Yesterday was my last day of school, so I’m officially free! Sweet, sweet freedom! To celebrate the start of my summer vacation, I have here my newest review for Blood Rose Rebellion by Rosalyn Eves. Let me tell you why I wanted to read it: Magic + 1847 Hungary. I mean, this is basically trying to get me to like the fantasy genre even more since it takes place in Austria-Hungary! Now here’s my review!
About Blood Rose Rebellion
The thrilling first book in a YA fantasy trilogy for fans of Red Queen. In a world where social prestige derives from a trifecta of blood, money, and magic, one girl has the ability to break the spell that holds the social order in place.
Sixteen-year-old Anna Arden is barred from society by a defect of blood. Though her family is part of the Luminate, powerful users of magic, she is Barren, unable to perform the simplest spells. Anna would do anything to belong. But her fate takes another course when, after inadvertently breaking her sister’s debutante spell—an important chance for a highborn young woman to show her prowess with magic—Anna finds herself exiled to her family’s once powerful but now crumbling native Hungary.
Her life might well be over.
In Hungary, Anna discovers that nothing is quite as it seems. Not the people around her, from her aloof cousin Noémi to the fierce and handsome Romani Gábor. Not the society she’s known all her life, for discontent with the Luminate is sweeping the land. And not her lack of magic. Isolated from the only world she cares about, Anna still can’t seem to stop herself from breaking spells.
As rebellion spreads across the region, Anna’s unique ability becomes the catalyst everyone is seeking. In the company of nobles, revolutionaries, and Romanies, Anna must choose: deny her unique power and cling to the life she’s always wanted, or embrace her ability and change that world forever.
Disclaimer: I received a free hardcover copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review. I have also received swag from the author in a separate giveaway. These will not affect my review.
Overall Thoughts: Blood Rose Rebellion has been one of my most anticipated reads of 2017! When I saw that they were giving away free copies of this book in exchange for a review on Blogging for Books, I immediately jumped onto the offer. Let me say, this book did not disappoint! I loved how it infused both 1847 Hungary (which now has a special place in my heart because I loved the culture in the book) and fantastic magic! I definitely enjoyed reading it, and I couldn’t put it down at times! The strongest aspect of this book is the world-building, which is fascinating to think about! It definitely is a compelling combination of fantasy and history.
Magic and Fantasy: I am really fascinated with the magical society in the book! Fantasy is honestly not my type of genre, but this book definitely made me love the genre more. In the book, the Luminates control most of the magic in Europe, and there are four “classes” of them: Animanti, Lucifera, Coremancers, and Elementalists. I just love how the characters harness this magic and how it incorporates itself into this alternate world of Europe. I became really fascinated with the world of the Binding, the Luminate society, and the race to weaken the Circle. The author definitely crafted the fantastical side well!
(By the way, I took Rosalyn Eves’s quiz and I am an Elementalist, so I would control inanimate objects like light and other stuff!)
History and Hungary: Setting Blood Rose Rebellion in 1847 Hungary was a great move by the author. I love learning more about Hungary’s culture! What was really funny is that the day I finished this book, I played Czardas by Vittorio Monti at a concert. A csardas is a Hungarian country dance with a slow start and a fast ending. I really enjoyed reading the Hungarian phrases and supporting the Magyars for independence. The book was so well-researched and very enlightening about society in the early 1800s. Now I want to go to Hungary! I have a greater love for the country and the culture because of this book. In addition, incorporating the magical realm with the actual historical events makes the book even better! The Circle is actually the ruling class of Europe, from Queen Victoria of England to the Hapsburgs in the Austria Empire, which makes the whole “alternate world” very believable.
Some Minor Details: As much as I love this book, it’s not one of my favorites because it did not wow me like Caraval or These Vicious Masks. For example, Anna kisses her cousin Matyas (and I mean a romantic kiss) twice… and I’m a bit confused. Was this out of relationship romance or cousin-to-cousin love? There were no plot holes, but at times I focused on trying to finish the book rather than enjoy it. And there were times I tried to skim a bit- not a good idea. But it was still a very great book nonetheless!
Concluding Thoughts: Will I be on the lookout for Book 2? Yes! I can’t believe I found a historical fantasy that combines both a mesmerizing world of magic and actual historical events. This book sparked my new love for Hungary that I will hold dear in my heart right after Poland. I definitely recommend this for fantasy and historical fiction fans! It is a strong start for Eves’s upcoming trilogy that has a lot of potential for greatness.
Some of My Favorite Quotes:
“People can be many things, not all of them expected.”
“Everyone feels that way who does not fit neatly into the role society gives them. But it doesn’t mean something is wrong with you, only that you are bigger than they can imagine.”
“You don’t wait for a moment; you create it.”
“We trap ourselves with bonds of our own making: duty, love, desire.”
“[Y]ou have always been meant for greater things. Let yourself be free. Be who God intended you to be.”
Hope you enjoyed it! Happy Reading!