Wednesday, October 29, 2014

YA Review: The Shadow Prince

The Shadow Prince (Mortal Enchantments, 0.5) by Stacey O'Neale, March 25, 2014. 110 pages. Published by Phoenix Reign Publishing. Source: Author
Every sacrifice has consequences.

Sixteen-year-old Rowan has spent most of his life living among the mortals-learning to control the element of fire, impatiently awaiting the day his vengeful mother, Queen Prisma, will abdicate her throne. When he finally returns to Avalon for his coronation, his mother insists he must first prove his loyalty to the court by completing a secret mission:

Kill Kalin, the half-human, half-elemental daughter of the air court king.

Willing to do anything to remove his mother from power, he agrees to sacrifice the halfling. He returns to the mortal world with his best friend, Marcus, determined to kill the princess. But as he devises a plan, he starts to question whether or not he's capable of completing such a heinous task. And what price he will pay if he refuses?
First Sentence:
A beach bonfire?

While I'm still not really a fan of novellas for series, I did find myself enjoying The Shadow Prince because it gave some very important back-story as to Rowan's connection with Kalin and how things got to the point were things kick off in The Mortal Enchantments.

I will openly tell you that the first chapter or so of The Shadow Prince did not capture my attention. I was slightly bored with the demeanor that Rowan put forth and his general personality. I just didn't care for him at first. He just came across as arrogant and everything I dislike about certain male characters depicted in the young adult market.
    Now, don't go running away with the pitchforks yet. I said that in the beginning I couldn't really find any reason to care for Rowan as a character. Yet, the further I read the more I came to like him as he tried to shake off the chains of his court and the way that his mother ran it. It was interesting to watch him grapple with the problem of trying to ascend the throne as to change the ways of his people with that of his mission to murder the innocent elemental daughter of the Air Court. If it wasn't for his doubts on doing the job I would have forever disliked him.

I'm sure y'all were worried there for a minute. So, if at first I didn't care for Rowan and his story, y'all are probably wondering why I continued on past my early grumblings. Well, it was the writing.I enjoyed the way Stacey O'Neale captured the torment of the decision that Rowan faced. If he had failed to have his doubts over the condition that would make him king, I seriously doubt that I would have finished reading it.

While I feel that I cannot say too much more about the actual story without giving away every last detail, I will leave you with this thought. After reading both The Shadow Prince and Mortal Enchantments, I do believe that it is important for y'all to read the prequel novella before diving into the first book as it really sets the stage.

As to the writing, once I got into the story and seeing how it set things up for the first book I was hooked. I though Stacey O'Neale did a wonderful job creating the atmosphere and preparing things for what was to come in book one. But, what I enjoyed most was seeing how what happened would influence all of Rowan's actions in The Mortal Enchantments. For me, it really helped me to understand his motives behind his actions. So, yeah, I guess you could say that I have zero regrets on reading this novella even though I generally could care less about novellas.

Final Verdict: The Shadow Prince- A clarifying look into the upcoming motives and actions of a certain character; also pretty interesting look at the behind the scenes power-plays that'll happen.

The Shadow Prince earns

This book was received in exchange for an honest review

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