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A King's Ransom

A King's Ransom - Lia Black A King’s Ransom was a reminder of the time I had my wisdom teeth pulled out, before the local anesthetics were able to work. It was a lot of unnecessary pain, and I was just glad when it was over.

The basis of the story is this: Kaidos is a Wanderer, a group of nomadic people looked down upon by humans. He is a thief who is fulfilling his last act of crime by kidnapping a prostitute for an amount of money that would allow him to retire. His assumption that the prostitute is female is but one of many misunderstandings Kaidos will encounter when he steals away Veyl.

Part 1 of the book deals mostly with Kaidos and Veyl – their introduction, their feelings for one another, recognizing those feelings, and falling in love. Part 2 is where the plot begins to progress: we are introduced with a whole new cast of characters, are dropped onto new lands, discover the ways of the elven tribes, and learn of everything that has led to Veyl’s true captor.
There is betrayal, deceit, magic, adventure, ect. – pretty much the makings of a great fantasy novel. But when something sounds too good to be true, then it usually is. But in order not to spend too much time on a review for a book I didn’t particularly enjoy, I will just list all the reasons I did NOT like this book:

-Veyl. He is pretty much a chick-with-a-dick. Damsel in distress. The person who acts before thinking, which then ultimately screws everyone over. And his solution and reaction to everything is crying. Lots. Of. Crying. Fuck, it got to the point that I wanted to cry from my frustrations with him.

- What’s worse than introducing a whole new cast of characters after half-way into the book? How about spending even MORE time establishing these characters’ romantic relationship with one another? Meanwhile, the spotlight on the main issue between Kaidos and Veyl is pretty much pushed into the backburner while we are busy worrying about the love between characters that weren’t even there for the first half of the book. WTF? At this point, I don’t CARE about these other characters. Not that I liked Veyl at all, but let us at least stay focused on the main issues here, and not diverge into all these other issues.

-How conveniently every important character happens to be gay. Especially in a world where the major groups of people (humans, elves, wanderers) tend to be homophobic or have some issues with homosexuals. It just felt a bit iffy is all.

-Late world building. Seriously, we didn’t even KNOW much about the elves and magic until the second part of the book. It just felt like the author was dumping a bunch of information to conveniently allow the plot to progress in part 2 instead of taking the time to construct things accordingly towards the beginning of the novel.

How about the positives? Um, well…the concept was interesting enough. And I liked the plot, just not the execution of it. And despite my ramblings of this book, I can say that my dislike of it is NOT because this is a bad book. Just that it didn’t work for me.