Friday, May 23, 2014

The Immortal Crown by Richelle Mead

The Immortal Crown by Richelle Mead
2014, Dutton Adult
Series: Book 2 of Age of X

Synopsis: Gameboard of the Gods introduced religious investigator Justin March and Mae Koskinen, the beautiful supersoldier assigned to protect him. Together they have been charged with investigating reports of the supernatural and the return of the gods, both inside the Republic of United North America and out. With this highly classified knowledge comes a shocking revelation: Not only are the gods vying for human control, but the elect—special humans marked by the divine—are turning against one another in bloody fashion.

Their mission takes a new twist when they are assigned to a diplomatic delegation headed by Lucian Darling, Justin’s old friend and rival, going into Arcadia, the RUNA’s dangerous neighboring country. Here, in a society where women are commodities and religion is intertwined with government, Justin discovers powerful forces at work, even as he struggles to come to terms with his own reluctantly acquired deity.

Meanwhile, Mae—grudgingly posing as Justin’s concubine—has a secret mission of her own: finding the illegitimate niece her family smuggled away years ago. But with Justin and Mae resisting the resurgence of the gods in Arcadia, a reporter’s connection with someone close to Justin back home threatens to expose their mission—and with it the divine forces the government is determined to keep secret.

The Good: The Immortal Crown was a fantastic followup to Gameboard of the Gods. Taking Mae and Justin into Arcadia was awesome. It really showed another side of the world Mead created and highlight how both of those worlds are extreme versions of our own. I loved them there and in contrast, Tessa back in the RUNA. So many things happened in this book that could open up a world of possibilities in future novels. The tension between Mae and Justin was just delicious. I don't think I've ever described romantic attraction in a book like that before, but it's the only word that would accurately describe the feeling going on here.

The Bad: I didn't love how the book ended. I get it, but I didn't find it satisfying in the least. More of a problem is how the Gods aspect of the book makes things easier than it should a lot of the time. If Mae or Justin ever get written into a corner - no worries. The Gods will help them. It's an easy out that I'm not loving a lot of the time.

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