Author: J. Lloyd Morgan
Age Range: Young Adult
Publication Date: August 8, 2011
Synopsis from Goodreads: Eliana and Rinan are in love. However, she is destined to become queen of Bariwon, obligated to marry the victor of a competition called the Shoginoc, while Rinan, her royal guardian, is forbidden to marry. Normally they could renounce their titles to be together, but these are not normal times. Abrecan, the malevolent governor of Erd, is determined to win the Shoginoc, thereby placing his easily manipulated son Daimh on Bariwon s throne. Can Eliana and Rinan find a way to be together without jeopardizing the peace they are so desperately trying to protect?
Definitely the epitome of fairy tales of the modern time. J. LLoyd Morgan weaves together a intrigue filled plot with enough twists, characters, and romance to keep you engaged (and slightly confused) until the very last page.
This book right from the beginning reminded me of a modern fairytale. All the little quirks and schemes presented in true fairytale fashion and I definitely love the fact that the story was one that could bring back the classics of a fairytale, yet keep its own original plot to it. That being said, for me, the book read a lot like a series of short stories. The way I read it from the synopsis on various websites and on the back of the book, I thought I had a pretty good idea of how the story was going to begin, and I was ready to let the plot run its course. But that really is not how it went at all.
First off, if you read this book and are able to get through all the sections and differentiate each character the first time through, I greatly commend you. There were so many characters! And these weren't just supporting background characters, oh no, most of them were main characters. Which brings me back to the fact that I felt the book was more a collection of short stories all related and taking place in the same setting, but definitely individual stories in there own. It felt like the first part of the book was a very long prologue, to the main story. Which wasn't necessarily a bad thing, just very unexpected.
Some characters in particular Sunshine for instance, who comes along later on in the story, was definitely a favorite of mine. One thing that I usually do not favor about historical books is the fact that the female characters don't seem to have the same tenacity as those of contemporary books, but Eliana and Sunshine definitely proved me wrong there. You ever need someone to help you out with your witty remarks, or prove to you that any girl could command a room of guardians as best as a man, these are the girls you call.
At some points the plot was lost to me. I felt like the pages and the characters were just going without any real relevance to a plot. So yes, at times it was a bit slow, but the plot does find its way back into the story and then you are back hanging off the edge of your seat waiting to find out what comes next.
The romance plays a big role in this book especially since there is more than one romantic intermingling going on. I adore the fact the book actually went against the typical "princesses and princes fall in love" romantic theme and made it a little more...forbidden. I mean really, who can resist forbidden romance.
And in the end everyone lived h... of course I'm not going to give that away, but I definitely recommend you give this book a go. Without a doubt something different regarding book format, and if you can keep up with the characters and are a fan of historical romance this book is the one to check out.
Recommendations: Those who were fans of the fairytales of back in the and of course all out there who just can't resists a forbidden romance, The Hidden Sun is the one to read!
Writing Style: 3/5
If you like this book, check out the Poison Study Series by. Maria V. Synder: