The Waking Land **ARC Review** (Spoiler Free)

Author: Callie Bates | Published: June 29, 2017 by Hodder & Stoughton | Series: – N/A | Length: 384 pages | Genre: YA Fantasy | Source: I got his book in my June Illumicrate

Fourteen years ago, Elanna was taken hostage by the king as her father’s rebellion failed.  From that point on the king raised her as one of his own, but now rebellion is being whispered about in the kingdom, and Elanna’s father is at the head of it again.  In a twist of events, she is taken back by her father who wants to use her as the figurehead of his rebellion, claiming she is the Wildegarde reincarnated, a powerful sorceress who could control the earth.  Little do they know, Elanna actually has the legendary powers, but she has kept them hidden for so long that she has no idea how to use it.  And being the first Caveadear, or steward of the land, in hundreds of years means that there arent’ an abundance of teachers to help her learn how to use her powers.  As war looms on the horizon, Elanna must choose which side she is on and whether to use her powers for mercy or war.

I was very excited for this book because I saw that it was recommended for readers that loved Leigh Bardugo and I flipping adore Bardugo’s work.  I went into this book not really knowing much and was so confused for about the first 30%.  I’m not much of a high fantasy reader, and this book felt like it read like one.  There were so many names and places and history to take in that I almost just couldn’t get through it because I’d get so lost.  Right around the time things really got rolling in the book it did get a little better, but I still felt a little disappointed with it.  I did end up skimming some paragraphs, which did me more harm than good as I’d miss important parts amidst Elanna’s endless inner battle with her powers or fawning over Jahan.  Both of which got fairly annoying rather quickly.  Another thing that really got me was I really didn’t know who was ruler over what.  Yes there were kings/queens, but there was also an empire involved and it sounded like the empire may rule over them or I could have been wrong.  Either way it confused me a bit.  There was another part I question, but in asking my question I would give away so much so I’ll just leave it at that for now.

Altogether I did fairly enjoy this book.  If it really is going to be a trilogy I’m not sure if I will continue it or if I’ll just leave it after reading the first one.  Hears to hoping the series gets better.

I gave this book 3.5/5 stars on Goodreads.

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