Just a review this week – life has taken a sideways slip so I’m taking the chance to catch up by posting a review from one of the many books I read earlier this year.The Raven and the Dove by Kaitlyn Davis
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Described as an ‘epic fantasy retelling of Tristan and Isolde’, the story opening is all about the ritual of royal matches – each princess must leave her home for the kingdom of her new mate. But this time, deceit is afoot. The prince that Lyana chooses to give herself to, turns out to not be the man who participated in the trials. It’s way more complicated than that, but suffice it to say the first half of this book dwells on the set-up for what is obviously going to be an expansive plot, taking in not only the floating worlds we are first introduced to, but the unknown world below and forbidden magic, along with fearsome dragon attacks.
The descriptions, the characters, the development of the impossible-to-resolve love triangle, and emotional manipulation of the reader are all as masterful as I would expect from this skilful writer. However, issues with the worldbuilding bothered me right from the outset. If you have a land that has been shrouded in mist for hundreds of years, and a population that has never seen the sun, what do they eat? Nothing will grow on land under those circumstances. Perhaps, as this seems to be a maritime culture, they eat exclusively from the sea, but I wanted to know that!
Of course, the biggest downside for me was the cliff-hanger ending – my pet hate. I could see by half way through that this story would never resolve in one book, and that’s fine – I love series. I do, however, like some sort of resolution to something at the end of each book, which did not happen here. There is a climax, yes, but it simply pulls everything apart in the lives of the main characters, and then stops. From my perspective, the first half of the book was unnecessarily long. It could have stood to be a lot more compact, and taken our characters further into the next book before breaking. I’m not sure if that would work, but I won’t find out, because I have too many niggles over this one to continue with the next in series.
View all my reviews
I know many of you feel the same as I do about cliff hanger endings – how many of you are fine with them? To me, they always seem like a bit of a cheat, just to get you to buy the next book.