If you like high fantasy novels/series, then the Falling Kingdoms series should be on your must read list. If you are not a fan of multiple points of view, then perhaps you won't find this as appealing as others. But, high fantasy novels often have a cast of thousands just like the Game of Thrones which has millions of fans. You almost need a cast of thousands in order to follow along with your favorite characters as they wade through a dangerous world where any wrong move, or action, can be your last.
The second book in the Falling Kingdoms series, Rebel Springs, picks up pretty much right where Falling Kingdoms left off. King Gaius aka King of Blood, has combined all three kingdoms, Auranos, Limeros, and Paelsia, under the banner of Mytica. He continues searching for the Kindred, a source of what he believes is unlimited power and immortality thanks to the input from his new "advisor."
Speaking of Gaius's new advisor, Rhodes gives readers a look into the Watchers who are either up to no good, or trying hard to remain relevant to the world they now find themselves living in and want to help or hinder depending on the characters perspective. If you like lots of backstabbing, upheaval, and not knowing who is really good, or bad, then you will really enjoy reading about the Watchers.
While Gaius is now the king of all the lands, Marcus, Jonas, Cleo, and Lucia all struggle in their own ways to be relevant in this new reality they now find themselves in.
16-year old Cleo finds herself in a difficult situation in Rebel Spring. As the last surviving Bellos, she is pretty much a political prisoner used to keep the people of Auranos believing that they are safe and sound and not under the thumb of a tyrannical dictator. She knows that she is a liability to Gaiu's plans of keeping his crown, and her willingness to put herself out there for revenge, if it means her own death, gives her an added incentive above all others except for perhaps Jonas. The fact that she is forced into a loveless marriage, and faces the possibility of being isolated from all her friends, just makes Cleo the most interesting character in Rebel Spring.
I continue to loathe Prince Magnus no matter how hard others try to make me look beyond the pages or his new outlook on what is happening around him and the fact that he may or may not have an actual heart. Magnus has serious daddy issues, was so infatuated with his own sister (Lucia) that he made a move on her, and has always been a coward and a sniveling brat who deserved to die a painful death. Instead of understanding the position Cleo finds herself in, he barely looks beyond his own desire to do better than his own father at every angle. He goes as far as agreeing to marry her which is just another situation of a loveless relationship that I don't want to succeed. Apparently, I am in the minority with my dislike at Marcus and Cleo remaining together.
VERY happy that a certain asshat, who started the entire war between Limeros and Auranos, was killed off...finally! He deserved a whole lot worse than he got, trust me. Of course, a WHOLE lot of other characters were killed and there WAS a whole lot of blood in Rebel Spring.
I'm extremely worried about Jonas's future since nothing he ever does seems to go as he planned, including his possible feelings for Cleo. I appreciated that Jonas got an added bonus with the addition of Lysandra Barbas to the storyline as a fellow rebel who kicks ass and hope that she last longer than others who have been brutally murdered and killed off by Rhodes but was saddened by other Rebels that were killed off like lambs to a slaughter. I also hope that Jonas finds a romance that he can trust himself with.
I am hoping that Morgan doesn't leave us hanging with Lucia's abilities as the sorceress and that Lucia doesn't spoil things with her temper tantrums she continually throws. Lucia can be a phenomenal character if she breaks out of her annoying whiny self and starts to understand that she is just a pawn in a game that is way bigger than her perceived problems and she is definitely going to need some real friends to survive. I am also hoping that she opens her eyes to her fathers manipulations before it is too late to stop it.
I am kind of amused by the participation of Prince Ashur Cortas of the Kraeshian Empire in Rebel Spring. I am amused because while he could be a really interesting confidant and ally of Cleo's in her desire to regain her crown, he apparently has other more pressing desires and needs as well, including a surprising romance perhaps?
I truly hate waiting a full year to read the next installment, but unfortunately that is what happens when you start reading fun series. I've said this once, I shall say it again, it is almost worth the time to wait until ALL books are released before reading any series.
Author: Morgan Rhodes
Title: Rebel Spring (Falling Kingdoms # 2)
Released: December 3, 2013
Genre: High Fantasy, Young Adult
Library Book w/416 pages