Friday, January 11, 2019

#AudiobookReview: The Hundredth Queen By Emily R. King

The Hundredth Queen by Emily R. King
Publisher: Brillance Audio
Release Date: June 1st, 2017
Format: Audiobook narrated by Lauren Ezzo
My Rating: ★ 1/2
GoodReads ★ Amazon ★ B&N ★ TBD
He wanted a warrior queen. He got a revolutionary.

As an orphan ward of the Sisterhood, eighteen-year-old Kalinda is destined for nothing more than a life of seclusion and prayer. Plagued by fevers, she’s an unlikely candidate for even a servant’s position, let alone a courtesan or wife. Her sole dream is to continue living in peace in the Sisterhood’s mountain temple.

But a visit from the tyrant Rajah Tarek disrupts Kalinda’s life. Within hours, she is ripped from the comfort of her home, set on a desert trek, and ordered to fight for her place among the rajah’s ninety-nine wives and numerous courtesans. Her only solace comes in the company of her guard, the stoic but kind Captain Deven Naik.

Faced with the danger of a tournament to the death—and her growing affection for Deven—Kalinda has only one hope for escape, and it lies in an arcane, forbidden power buried within her.
I am pretty sure I picked this up during one of the Audible 2-for-1 sales awhile back, and I really only picked this one because of the narrator. I really loved Lauren Ezzo's narration for Sawkill Girls, that I wanted to try another book she did. I liked this one a lot, but I just didn't connect all that much with the story itself. Although, the narration was fantastic!

I didn't really have a problem with the world in this story being such a patriarchal society and how women are pitted against each other. Mostly because I think that is the POINT of the world, and it's why you want to root so hard for Kalinda. I know this bothered other reviewers, but I think that is the whole setup. It's about warrior women that fight to the death, but what if they stop doing that and uplift each other? I like that about the story a lot.

The world building with the war between the Rajah and the Bhutas was super cool. Although I thought it was spelled Buddhas the whole time and was very confused because fighting people with super powers doesn't seem like Buddhism to me. I did love that the Bhutas had different elemental powers, kind of like in Avatar, so that definitely was a cool aspect of this fantasy novel to me.

I think what made me not love the story as much as I could have is that it felt a little too predictable to me. There are a few reveals about Kalinda in the novel, and I could see if from a mile away. Is that bad writing? Or is it because I read too much fantasy? It could have been a little of both, but either way it didn't wow me when I was reading as much as it could have. Another thing that just really grinds my gears about YA books is instalove. Look, sometimes I am okay with it, but in this novel I just didn't buy it.

This book still has a lot of merit, and I think it's a good starting point. I haven't decided yet if I want to continue with the series, but if I do I will definitely do it on audio because Lauren Ezzo made me want to continue listening to her voice

Have you read this series? Should I continue with it?

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