I received an ARC copy from the publisher via NetGalley. This book was published in May, 2015. It is the first book of the “Records of the Ohanzee” series by Rachel R. Smith.
Genre: Sci-Fi, Fantasy, YA
My rating: ★★★★☆
Chiyo and Marise are neighbour realms, but their common interest are long gone. Twenty years ago, Casimer, the king of Marise, attempted to take over Chiyo, but he failed. On the anniversary of this aborted attempt, Chiyo celebrates every year a Masquerade.
Nerissa is the Heiress of Chiyo, and for once she would like to attend the Masquerade anonymously. She has therefore created a master plan, which will allow her to enjoy the ball, and be judged for who she really is, and not just for the fact that she is the Heiress.
But on the night of the Masquerade, nothing goes as planned, and the Manor is under attack…
I won’t say more because it would get to spoilery… Be prepared for a lot of surprises!
First of all, isn’t this cover absolutely gorgeous?
It was a bit difficult to get into the story at first. I was really confused between all the names of people and places, but it goes better as the book goes by, and during the entire second part of the book, I was completely captivated, wanting to know more and more…
The story is a bit slow at the beginning, and I found it a bit hard to follow at first, as there are many characters, and the narration goes from one to another without warning, but once again, it gets better in the second part, all you have to do is be patient!
What else can I say? As with the rest, it took me some time to become attached to Nerissa as a character, but she develops really well with the story, I can’t even believe I didn’t find her endearing at first. Raysel, Ildiko and Einar are also really great characters, not to mention Rian (I would have loved to see more of him by the way!)
Shae’s plot seems rather interesting but we don’t see much of her, which I regret a bit. This leaves open doors for the second book, but I would have loved to see a bit more of her quest in this book. I also think Charis’ part was a bit underdevelopped, but hopefully, we will see more of her too in the second book!
I know I didn’t explore every aspect of the novel, but what you need to keep in mind is, if you start this book and are not convinced at first, don’t give up just yet, and give it a second chance!
Rachel Smith created such a fascinating universe, with great characters. I need to get my hands on the sequel right now, I can’t get it off my mind!
I recommend it for people who liked The Selection or Red Queen.