The Invasion of the Tearling [The Queen of Tearling #2] by Erika Johansen – A review

The Invasion of the Tearling (The Queen of the Tearling, #2)The Invasion of the Tearling by Erika Johansen

Genre : Fantasy, Magic
Audience: Mature (18+)
Type : Series (Book 2)
My rating: 3 of 5 stars ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Buy Online: Amazon

A coming-of-age novel and the second book of the series, The Queen of Tearling is an arduous read with a payoff in the end.

This story picks off from the conclusion of the first novel, telling us the story of Kaelsea and her entourage.

We get more of the Tearling and some in-depth character development of all the main players. We learn about who’s who; their back stories, deepest, darkest secrets and their vices.

The tone of the book is slightly dark and gory. It has some 18+ scenes that I did not enjoy. The savagery, the blood and gore are crucial to the story, but I found myself retching at them.

Reading Progress Invasion of the Tearling

The pacing was slower than book 1 (The Queen of Tearling). Throughout the book I was urging the story to move on and accelerate. Sometimes I even shook my fists with frustration at the author, asking her to get on with it, because I had too many questions that needed answers.

Who is her father ?
What happened to lily ?
Why are Lily and Kelsea connected ?
How are they connected ?
How is the Red Queen related to all this ?
What do the sapphires actually do ?
Where is the Fetch and what is his background ?
How about Mace and Thorne? Will Kelsea ever be a good queen ?
Was her mother truly her mother at all ?

So many questions !

I was completely invested in the characters. Superb characterization, I’ll give it to her. The people like Mace, Thorne, Arliss and Finn are well done and portrayed so well.

My adoration of the characters comes to a halt at the protagonist. I can hardly understand her. Sometimes she does stupid things. Sometimes she does really brave things. I had an image of Kelsea in the first book that totally blew me. She was the brave, strong, courageous girl who was given the Queenship of Tearling and the terrible responsibility of redeeming her mother and saving the people from the evil Red Queen. What happened to her now ? 🙁 What will she do in the future? (Guess I’ll find out in book 3)

Overall, the story is slow to pickup and doesn’t make sense half the time. There is a secondary story arc that catpults you to somewhere entirely different from The Tearling and makes you wonder if you are in fact reading the same novel. But, let me tell you, it all ties up in the end. The pacing picks up rapidly after 70% and you’ll be at the edge of your seat wishing for more than two eyes so you can read faster.

A fantastic story (albeit verbose) that will thrill you, entertain you and captivate you.

P.S. For those of you interested, here’s the review of book 1 >> http://bit.ly/2qdTBFL

Jonathan Strange and Mr.Norrel by Susanna Clarke: A review

Jonathan Strange and Mr NorrellJonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke

My rating: 5 of 5 stars ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
View all my Goodreads reviews

Buy Online: Flipkart, Amazon

The book that made me exercise my biceps. The book that made me LOL without a break. The book that is an epitome of dry humor and sarcasm.

What I felt about it
A completely unique and original story from an author who knows what she’s doing. It was a slow-burner and had lots of little tidbits in the footnotes. It is an elaborate read, but I liked it. It was a nice change of pace from all the murder mysteries I’ve been reading. I liked the fact that there were no dirty words or stuff and the story was clean of double entendres. I really wish that we can all start reading and writing more stories like this. This book is a collectible, worthy of sitting in the best bookshelf on every reader’s home library. I think that this book deserves more popularity and more praise. Amazing piece of work, Susanna Clarke. I could kiss you for writing this beautiful story.

Reading Progress

JSAMR Reading Progress 1JSAMR Reading Progress 2JSAMR Reading Progress 3JSAMR Reading Progress 4JSAMR Reading Progress 5

Storytelling
There is no question in my mind about the brilliance of this book. It deserves five stars and more stars and more awards and more accolades than what it has received right now. JSAMR is the story of the titular magicians striving to bring back (lost) magic to England in the 1800s. What is not to like about this premise? It has magic, it has humor, it has elaborate narrative AND it is set in the best age of British history.

The first thing that strikes you about the book is how heavy the thing is from all of its 1000 pages and its humor. The book oozes sarcasm. The narrative thrives on dry humor. The story exudes clever witticism. Naturally, all credit goes to the brilliant, BRILLIANT author, Susanna Clarke.

I mean, if I had to talk about her narrative then I’d need a whole day. Seriously. Her use of premonition in revealing key characters, plot twists and story elements is insanely clever! The novel is rich in footnotes that tell us more about this world she is building. The footnotes give us lots of insights into our characters and many, tiny branching stories.

It’s like a thousand stories within one big story

Characters
Mr. Norrel – The one that is secretive – secretly jealous, secretly afraid, secretly sincere.
Jonathan Strange – The one who is likable, friendly, jovial and talented.
Childermass – The one who appears very rarely but the one you miss the most.
Arabella Strange – The one who sets the bar for wives all over England.
Lady Pole – The one who looks like a butterfly but stings like a bee.
Mr. Honeyfoot – The one who should have had his foot in his mouth, honey.
Drawlight, Mr. Lascelles – The ones who are supposed to be comic reliefs but whom you hate.
Vinculus – The one that shocks you with his story.
John Uskglass – The one you want more of.
The Fairy – The mean one that you were happy to see defeated.
Stephen – The one you root for.

JSAMR in short:
Length : 1006 pages (!!!)
Author : The Sarcastic Susanna Clarke
Genre : Historical Fiction
Tone : Funny-as-hell
Why you should NOT read JSAMR: Only for the plot
Why you should read JSAMR: Purely for the sarcasm

The Queen of The Tearling [Tearling #1] by Erika Johansen: A review

The Queen of the Tearling (The Queen of the Tearling, #1)The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen
View all my Goodreads reviews

Genre : Fantasy, Magic
Audience: Mature (18+)
Type : Series (Book 1)
My rating: 5 of 5 stars ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
Buy Online: Flipkart, Amazon

 

An incredibly intense fantasy story that is partly coming-of-age and partly magic. It has everything – adventure, thrill, mystery and a beautiful romance.

I loved this book from the first page. I just knew that any book that begins with a nice map was going to be an epic read. And I was right!

This book has all the making of the first book in a series –
1) introduces characters
2) keeps the background of characters a secret (to be revealed in book 2 and 3)
3) sets up the pre-war scenario
4) raises more questions than answers (again, to be revealed in book 2 and 3)
5) has humor

jennifer-lawrence-fangirling-whoalawrence

This was not an easy read. I had to plough through chapters that spoke of some terrible things. It was definitely for mature audiences. The plot kept me at the edge of my seat because it had many unexpected and unpredictable twists. The pacing was a slow-burn. It took its own time to set-up events and introduce characters. I loved the characters especially Carlin and Barty whose characters were developed without even their presence. If that isn’t good writing then I don’t know what is! The story carried an excellent narrative that (despite its slow pace) didn’t bore me at all. There was enough history, background and mystery to keep me engaged.

My Reading Experience:

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Things I liked about the book –

1) The chemistry between Mace and Kelsea
2) The mysterious magic
3) Kelsea’s humour
4) Badass heroine
5) Badass heroine’s love for books
6) Treason (what good is a royal story without treason?)

I would say that after reading the likes of Harry Potter and The Kingkiller Chronicles, I was starved for some good magic fantasy series that isn’t fully YA and The Queen of Tearling was the perfect answer.

The Queen of The Tearling was like taking the first bite of home food after being away for so long. It satiated my hunger of magic, fantasy, historical fiction, medieval times and royalty.

Emma Watson has agreed to do a film series of the same name!! She said this back in 2013. The movie is still under works and I’m hoping it will come out soon. See what she said about this series (I couldn’t agree more)

queen