Review: Legacy of Kings (#1, Blood of Gods and Royals) by Eleanor Herman - Vilma Iris | Lifestyle Blogger

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Review: Legacy of Kings (#1, Blood of Gods and Royals) by Eleanor Herman

My Thoughts

An utterly spellbinding and fascinating mix of magic and history. Epic in every sense of the word.

5stars

News: Legacy of Kings picked up by Warner Bros for TV show development

Synopsis
Legacy of Kings blood of gods royalsImagine a time when the gods turn a blind eye to the agony of men, when the last of the hellions roam the plains and evil stirs beyond the edges of the map. A time when cities burn, and in their ashes, empires rise. Alexander, Macedonia’s sixteen-year-old heir, is on the brink of discovering his fated role in conquering the known world but finds himself drawn to newcomer Katerina, who must navigate the dark secrets of court life while hiding her own mission: kill the Queen. But Kat’s first love, Jacob, will go to unthinkable lengths to win her, even if it means competing for her heart with Hephaestion, a murderer sheltered by the prince. And far across the sea, Zofia, a Persian princess and Alexander’s unmet fiancée, wants to alter her destiny by seeking the famed and deadly Spirit Eaters. Weaving fantasy with the salacious and fascinating details of real history, New York Times bestselling author Eleanor Herman reimagines the greatest emperor the world has ever known: Alexander the Great, in the first book of the Blood of Gods and Royals series.
My Review
From the first time I read the synopsis, I knew this was the kind of book I would devour. Appealing to both my love of history and my love of fantasy, bestselling author Eleanor Herman delivers a fascinating and gripping story with her YA fantasy debut. Known for her historical novels, Herman imbues that same richness and depth in Legacy of Kings, as is evidenced by not only her world building, but also her nuanced and complex characters. Imparted primarily by six distinctive point of views, she weaves a tale where empires begin to rise to power, where magic and myth stir amidst evil and deception. We meet sixteen-year-old Alexander (Alex), heir to the throne of Macedonia, who dreams of taking his rightful place as an unstoppable leader, irrespective of his father, King Philip II.

“He has other plans, plans his father doesn’t know about. And if he succeeds, he’ll be the greatest leader this world has ever known.”

Along with his best friend and confidante, Hephaestion (Heph), Alex devises a plan to fulfill his fate, but when their plan goes awry in the Blood Tournament, everything changes. Then Alex meets Katerina (Kat), an orphan from Erissa, and an unexpected and unexplainable connection forges between them, complicating the mission Kat is determined to accomplish. Kat is in Pella, the kingdom of Macedon, to infiltrate the palace and right the wrongs of her past, beginning with Alex’s maliciously shrewd mother, Queen Olympias. She’s also there to watch over the boy she loves, Jacob, who bests Heph in the tournament, but gets entangled with the mysterious, deceptive and powerful Aeserian Lords. Meanwhile, we also come across the Persian Princess Zofia (Zo), who runs from her destiny in search of the man she truly loves to escape her betrothal to Alex, whom she’s never met. Meanwhile, Alex’s half-sister, Cynane (Cyn), plays a dangerous game as she too wishes to be free from her own fate. But as some rise to power, some search for it in long-lost magic, some wield it through unspeakable ways, and yet, some work to brutally rid it from the kingdom… come what may. And when the story naturally builds into an epic, heart-pounding crescendo, nearing a window where fates can be re-imagined, their lives and destines twine and unfurl in surprising, exciting and catastrophic ways.

“She has waited ten years for this moment. Ten years. It is more than just an eclipse—iit signals the end of an era, the completion of another thousand-year cycle. According to the old priests and priestesses of the north, the Age of the Gods is coming to an end… Many philosophers predict that during these great shifts, fates can be altered, curses lifted, and unthinkable feats achieved.”

The main points of view (Alex, Kat, Heph, Cyn, Jacob, Zo) weave together brilliantly and distinctively, each character’s voice and personality coming to life vividly. In addition, I loved how we saw so many strong and fearless heroines, who were as complex as they were fierce. In Kat, Cyn, Zo and even Olympias, we see their dark sides through their manipulation and scheming… sometimes with good intentions, sometimes not. We see friendships emerge and be tested, love challenged and seemingly lost, but through it all, a compulsively readable and gripping tale emerges that I was simply unable to put down. Some might say that the beginning was somewhat slow, however, with so many POVs, a rich and complex world to enliven and a layered plot to build, I thought it was perfect and appropriate. The detail in both setting and character development is essential to bringing this story to life. History and magic, blood and bone, power and deception—they all mix masterfully in this epic saga of gods and royals. series goodreads 2
Reading Order

Voice of Gods is a FREE prequel novella. You DO NOT have to read before Legacy of Kings. It can be read after.

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