Genre: Fantasy, YA
Series: Frostblood Saga #1
Rating: 1 STAR
The frost king will burn.
Seventeen-year-old Ruby is a Fireblood who has concealed her powers of heat and flame from the cruel Frostblood ruling class her entire life. But when her mother is killed trying to protect her, and rebel Frostbloods demand her help to overthrow their bloodthirsty king, she agrees to come out of hiding, desperate to have her revenge.
Despite her unpredictable abilities, Ruby trains with the rebels and the infuriating—yet irresistible—Arcus, who seems to think of her as nothing more than a weapon. But before they can take action, Ruby is captured and forced to compete in the king’s tournaments that pit Fireblood prisoners against Frostblood champions. Now she has only one chance to destroy the maniacal ruler who has taken everything from her—and from the icy young man she has come to love.
“I offered my hand to the fire.”
So, I realized that I have yet to post a completely negative review on my blog. So…I decided to publish one! Yeah! And that review is, unfortunately, for Frostblood by Elly Blake. Obviously, there are some things that you should know. First, I was really, really excited to read this. A fantasy book that deals with elemental powers and deals with a competition? Yes, please. And two, I rarely give out one stars. Like, ever. Seriously, I’m pretty sure that on my old Goodreads profile, I had about under twenty one star ratings. And, honestly, a large majority of them were DNFs, so me rating one star to a book that I’ve fully read is even more of a surprise. But, I’ve already rated two books one star this year. Is that an accomplishment? I can’t tell.
EDIT: THIS REVIEW IS FULL OF SPOILERS. I apologize to all the people I’ve already spoiled because I was in a rush to post this. Whoops.
First off, I think the main reason I didn’t like this book was just the fact that this was pretty much a cliché mess. If you’ve read a YA fantasy in the last couple of the years, you’ve probably already read this story and seen its plain characters and formed heart eyes at the soppy romance and seen the plot twists coming a mile away…and, yeah, you’ve most likely read this already. And if you haven’t, congratulations! You’ll probably love this more than I did.
We get to meet Ruby, who’s the token Chosen Girl who also has to battle the darkness inside her, and is part of a class/group of people that’s known as being an outsider and is constantly getting attacked, and somebody she cares about dies, causing her to want to get revenge against those who hate her. You know, the usual. Except Ruby wasn’t developed anywhere past that, and I swear to God, pretty much all her thoughts I’ve read before in another YA dystopian/fantasy before. And then we have Arcus, the token Love Interest who has a tragic past and is cold-hearted to the Chosen Girl but actually totally secretly loves her and he also has an undercover sweet side that comes out of nowhere and he’s an expert in the field that the Chosen Girl needs to become an expert in. Again, the usual. I will say, I liked that he was scarred since we rarely ever see an imperfect character in YA who’s still considered beautiful, but that’s overshadowed by how typical everything else was.
And then there’s the fact that I felt like the pacing of this book was all over the place. It took me a good long while to read this book, like about a week, which, for me, is a ridiculously long time. If I’m not in a slump-y sort of mood, I can read a book in two to three days, so yeah. I thought the first part of this book was so slow until Ruby FINALLY gets captured again. This sort of went all A Gathering of Shadows-esque, and, yeah, I love that book, but it also suffered from mentioning this awesome competition in the synopsis, and then it takes over halfway through the book before we finally actually GET to said competition, which annoys the hell out of me. And even then, the competition wasn’t even that fun. I was bored.
The world-building was much the same. It’s the same fantasy world with royalty and kings and queens ruling and peasants treated unfairly, and, of course, two main groups are fighting against each other, and one of them is prejudiced against the other, and it has magic, except this time, it’s elemental. It just didn’t seem like it’d take any effort to create a world like that, one that I’m sure we’ve all seen described in several other YA books.
And then we reach the end, and we learn…Arcus is lost royalty. You thought it couldn’t get more cliché? Don’t worry, it just proves you wrong! And then we have this big battle that’s pretty typical. Her new “love” is taken by the Big Bad Guy, who has been possessed by some sort of evil and is also the Love Interest’s brother, and the Chosen Girl unlocks this inner power that she never knew she had, while also feeling bad because it feels like she’s dabbling in the dark side. I’ve seen this before. Like, 294882 other times.
It’s just so frustrating, because I feel like this could’ve been good, despite the clichés. For example, I absolutely love Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard, and that got slandered by Goodreads for being unoriginal, but, in my opinion, it did a good job at balancing being cliché, but also still being pretty entertaining. Of course, not everyone feels that way, but I loved it. But this one…just ugh. That’s basically how I feel about it, which sucks.
Overall, just a very disappointing read, but if the reviews from Goodreads are anything to go by, I’m sure some of you guys out there might fall in love with it.
Have any of you guys read this book? Do you feel the same way? Or do you feel totally different?