Blood Rose Rebellion by Rosalyn Eves
“A magical tale unlike anything you’ve read before.” —Bustle.com
“[A] richly imagined 19th-century historical fantasy.” —EW.com, A-
The thrilling first book in a YA fantasy trilogy for fans of Red Queen. In a world where social prestige derives from a trifecta of blood, money, and magic, one girl has the ability to break the spell that holds the social order in place.
Sixteen-year-old Anna Arden is barred from society by a defect of blood. Though her family is part of the Luminate, powerful users of magic, she is Barren, unable to perform the simplest spells. Anna would do anything to belong. But her fate takes another course when, after inadvertently breaking her sister’s debutante spell—an important chance for a highborn young woman to show her prowess with magic—Anna finds herself exiled to her family’s once powerful but now crumbling native Hungary.
Her life might well be over.
In Hungary, Anna discovers that nothing is quite as it seems. Not the people around her, from her aloof cousin Noémi to the fierce and handsome Romani Gábor. Not the society she’s known all her life, for discontent with the Luminate is sweeping the land. And not her lack of magic. Isolated from the only world she cares about, Anna still can’t seem to stop herself from breaking spells.
As rebellion spreads across the region, Anna’s unique ability becomes the catalyst everyone is seeking. In the company of nobles, revolutionaries, and Romani, Anna must choose: deny her unique power and cling to the life she’s always wanted, or embrace her ability and change that world forever.
REVIEW: Eves’ debut novel and the first of a trilogy, “Blood Rose Rebellion” is action-packed but slow-paced, filled with magic and incompatible romance in an alternate European history. With vivid descriptions, Eves’ diverse characters challenge societal norms concerning sexism and classism — especially Anna, who is a strong, smart and courageous female character teens can relate to. Blood Rose Rebellion opens in an alternative Victorian England where magic and bloodlines mean everything. Sixteen-year-old Anna Arden would give anything to live in society, and at first glance, it appears she should be in the thick of it. Anna’s family is part of the Luminate, powerful users of magic. The Luminate rule the world. But Anna is Barren, unable to perform the simplest spells, and so she lives on the fringe, observing from the edge while her family enjoys the privileges that come with power
Overall, and without spoiling too much in this review, I think that Eves did an okay job with this debut novel. The historical aspect of it was good, period clothing and transportation etc. seem to be consistent and I absolutely LOVE that she references various classic literature throughout! I believe there can be some improvement in the development of characters, I haven’t quite decided if the vagueness is just a personal issue that I’m having with it but even in finishing the book I didn’t quite feel connected to Anna at any point. The story although slow at points is well developed, so looking past these few quirks I can say that I would tell other readers to keep an opened mind when reading this book. Overall, this book didn’t hook me like I wish it had. Even though I wasn’t really into this book like I thought I would be based on the cover and description, I would still recommend this one for people who really like the historical paranormal aspect. I do like how it gave us a different history.
**(Received this book from bloggingforbooks.com as an exchange for an honest review)**