Author: Cayla Kluver
Series: Legacy Trilogy, book 2
Genre: YA Fiction
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Source: Review copy from publisher
*Warning: This review contains spoilers*
“ ‘Only I saw Narian for who he truly was: a young man with courage and an independent mind, and made to pay for what was outside his control. He couldn't help his past any more than he could help the way those intense, deep-blue eyes pierced me and held me captive.’
An eighteen-year-old queen in love with the enemy as their countries pass the point of no return...
Bound to a man she cannot love, Queen Alera of Hytanica must forget Narian, the young man who holds her heart. For Narian is destined to conquer Hytanica at the behest of his master, the powerful magic-user known as the Overlord. Alera doesn't truly believe Narian will fight against Hytanica-until Cokyrian troops attack with Narian commanding the charge.
Faced with the greatest betrayal a heart can know, Alera must set aside personal feelings and lead her kingdom through its darkest time. And when all hope, will and courage seem lost, she must find strength and remember that even the blackest night must have a dawn.…”Allegiance is the second book in the Legacy Trilogy by Cayla Kluver.
I have to be honest, after reading Legacy (first book) I didn’t have high expectations about this book, but anyway I wanted to read it because I wanted to see what Ms. Kluver was going to do with the story.
The beginning of the book felt promising, actually I was surprised that many of the problems I had with Legacy were in some part fixed in Allegiance, but sadly half way in it started to fall short of my “new” expectations. The attention to detail wasn’t as overwhelming as with Legacy, but still sometimes it was a bit too much, the length of the book is unnecessarily long and needed some editing. But my biggest problem was the lack of growth of the characters, especially the main character, Alera.
In legacy while being in love with Narian Alera agreed to marry Steldor and become the new Queen of Hytanica next to her new husband.
Allegiance starts couple of days after their marriage with the coronation of Steldor and Alera as the new monarchs of Hytanica. I thought ok, Alera didn’t love Steldor but she agreed to marry him the least I was expecting was for her to do her best of the situation, she now is the Queen and I was expecting her to behave like one, but no, she is still the same spoiled selfish child thinking only about herself and brooding about Narian.
Steldor is patient with Alera, he doesn't want to force her to anything, he loves her and wants her to come to him of her own accord. He tries to approach her but is always meet with the cold wall of her indifference. Alera is attracted to Steldor but instead of working on a relationship with her husband she feels as if she’s betraying Narian, sorry but Narian is not your husband Steldor is! It was painful to see Alera’s attitude, not once she thought about her responsibility as a Queen and as a wife, even in the moments that Steldor needed her the most she keep her distance, I don’t know what kind of wife or woman could do what she did. By then she lost all the points she had earned with me. After these events she tried to take some control but it was always after somebody else told her what to do. She was a scared, immature and selfish child, not a Queen.
Now let’s talk about Alera’s men. In Legacy I liked Narian and hated Steldor. I was really disappointed when Alera accepted to marry Steldor without fighting for Narian, I kind of understood her reasons, but still I wanted Narian for her. In Allegiance I saw the real Steldor and my opinion changed completely. Ok, he has a temper but is not without provocation, with a wife like Alera is easy to lose your head, still he was caring, attentive, sympathetic, patient and overall her love for Alera was obvious.
Narian not only is fighting for the enemy, he’s leading the army, ok, supposedly he’s trying to minimize the damage but anyway the land is being destroyed and thousands of Hytanicas are dying under the hands of the troops he commands. Hytanica fell to the Cokyrians thanks to him. I thought Narian could have found a better solution to his predicament than following the Overlord orders and destroying Hytanica.
The secondary characters were sometimes more interesting than Alera, especially London and Canaan, they were the real force behind the good (queenly) actions that Alera did. Alera’s sister Miranna was one of the character that changed the most, although her change was a bittersweet one it was good to see some character development in her.
The pace in Allegiance flows better than in Legacy but still it stalls in some parts. The plot is well defined and interesting and it will have you glued to the pages wanting to see what is coming next. Despite the problems I had with Allegiance (Alera) I can honestly say I enjoyed it and it was a book difficult to put down. The outcomes are unexpected and will have you guessing page after page, surprising you more than once along the way.
The end was somehow a closure but still there is a lot to come. The next and last book, Sacrifice, will be release at the end of this year. I’m planning to read it, I want (hope) to see if Alera is going to be the Queen her people need.
I recommend this book and this series in general to all YA Fantasy lovers.
My Verdict: 3 ½ Paws
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