**** (4 out of 5)
The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson
One of my biggest pet peeves is when an author draws out a story into too many books. I like when each book in a series has its own story-line that gets resolved at the end of book. Then all the smaller stories lend to the bigger story. There are some cliffhangers, but the plot itself is not left half finished. Does that make sense? Think about Harry Potter. In The Sorcerer’s Stone Harry recovers the stone. In The Chamber of Secrets Harry kills the basilisk and saves Ginny. In The Goblet of Fire the tournament is concluded. Each book is its own story inside of the bigger picture.
Reading The Kiss of Deception I got completely sucked in. I couldn’t put it down! But towards the end of the book, I started to get the feeling that there wasn’t enough pages left for everything that needed to happen.
And I was right. The story didn’t resolve anything. It felt like the author wrote one really long story and just needed a dramatic place to make the cut between book one and book two.
But it was still a really good book, and I am dying to find out what happens next. So after finishing book one I had a mad dash to get the next book. Of course I finished it at like 1 am so there weren’t a whole lot of options. (I didn’t want the kindle edition because I got the first one in paperback and I like to read all the books in a series in the same format). The day after I finished it, I went to Barnes and Noble during my lunch break, but they only had book three. The customer service guy helpfully offered to order it. It would only take a week or two to come in. Hells No! I can’t wait that long. I politely declined and went back to work to order it on Amazon. With Prime I got free two day shipping so it should arrive today. In the meantime I am stuck with nothing to read because I don’t want to start a new book in the middle of reading a different series. I did end up buying the third book from Barnes and Noble so that I won’t have to go through this again.
The only thing that kept me from giving The Kiss of Deception 5 stars was the sudden ending with no conclusion. Other than that I loved the book. It is fast paced with plenty of action. Lots of plot twists and turns. Its amazing.
This book was also a first for me, in that I didn’t know who was who. I don’t get a lot of firsts anymore so it was really cool and creative. Most of the chapters are from the point of view of Lia, the runaway princess. She meets two characters named Kaden and Rafe. As the reader you know one is a prince and one is an assassin, but you don’t know which is which. Every once in a while you get a chapter from Kaden or Rafe’s point of view, and other times you get a chapter from the prince’s or the assassin’s point of view. The Kaden/Rafe chapters are about the characters interactions with Lia, and the prince/assassin chapters are about the characters internal thoughts, and interactions away from Lia. The reader is left guessing who is who. I kept flipping back and fourth trying to decide who I thought was which person.
It was a super fun, unique way to experience the story. About halfway through the book you do find out who is who. (The reader finds out when Lia finds out) After that all the chapters are Lia or Kaden/Rafe. Pearson did a wonderful job keeping all the interactions/thoughts just vague enough that she didn’t give anything away until the big reveal.
I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys young adult fantasy. It is a really great read. Just be prepared and have the second book ready when you finish!