I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson
Series: The Remnant Chronicles #1
Published by Macmillan on July 8th 2014
Buy on Amazon
A princess must find her place in a reborn world.
She flees on her wedding day.
She steals ancient documents from the Chancellor's secret collection.
She is pursued by bounty hunters sent by her own father.
She is Princess Lia, seventeen, First Daughter of the House of Morrighan.
The Kingdom of Morrighan is steeped in tradition and the stories of a bygone world, but some traditions Lia can't abide. Like having to marry someone she's never met to secure a political alliance.
Fed up and ready for a new life, Lia flees to a distant village on the morning of her wedding. She settles in among the common folk, intrigued when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deceptions swirl and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—secrets that may unravel her world—even as she feels herself falling in love.
For weeks now, I have been hearing about how amazing The Kiss of Deception is. How I absolutely should read it… like right this second. As with any book with some buzz behind it, I am usually a little wary. I have been burned one too many times. So, I do as the cautious do and ignore the buzz. Try to enjoy the read for what it is, how it makes me feel… and accept the book, good or bad, for what it really is.
The Kiss of Deception started off pretty strong. A young princess being tossed into an arranged marriage with a guy she has never met all for the sake of the kingdom and possibly peace. Right away, Lia, her preferred nickname, struck me as the resourceful type. Even in her princess environment, I could tell that she was like a fish out of water. Wanting to have more, do more with her life than sit around and play princess all the time. Of course, the tipping point for action came in the form of the arranged marriage. So, Lia does what any self-respecting princess would do… she runs.
In the midst of Lia running away, we are also introduced to our other two main characters: Kaden and Rafe. One is the jilted prince. The other an assassin sent to kill Lia. One thing I will have to give kudos to The Kiss of Deception for is being vague and a little confusing about who is who. In the early stages, the chapter’s POV title is simply titled after their role. Even once the boys (men?) are introduced the story keeps you on your toes about trying to figure out who is who. Every time I thought I had it figured / straightened out, there would be a new little tidbit that point at boy x as being y instead of x. It was fun, but also a little frustrating. Especially since sometimes the tidbits seemed to contradict earlier tidbits.
The Kiss of Deception seems to be divided into three major parts: princess to barmaid (aka freedom at last), the love triangle, and finally, action!?!
All three parts combined make a fairly interesting tale. Lia is a spunky character who even from the very beginning, never really acted like a princess. I loved her transformation from princess to barmaid. However, the love triangle does take up way more time than I ever thought it would. It wasn’t 100% a bad thing, but I do wish that the love triangle had been a little bit more in the background. As it is, I feel like I got beaten over the head quite a few times to pick a side. Prince or Assassin. Kaden or Rafe. By the time the action-ish part finally came around, I was feeling a bit underwhelmed. I cared about certain parts of The Kiss of Deception, while also finding myself wishing for SOMETHING to really happen. Something that did not revolve around Lia trying to sort out her feelings about who she wants to kiss more. Once it finally did, the book was basically over. Leaving me with a cliffhanger-ish ending. And probably another year to get some sort of resolution. Dang!
A nice mix of high fantasy with an over-the-top love triangle. If you do not like love triangles, The Kiss of Deception may be a hard one to swallow. I didn’t fully love The Kiss of Deception, but I did like it enough. For now, I think I will be trying the sequel and see how it goes.