The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen
The Queen of the Tearling teeters on the edge of awesome, but spends too much time on the side of annoying to really become what I hoped it would be.
I was intrigued by the story.
This world of queens, castles, and magic is inhabited by people whose ancient ancestors left America and England by boat long ago in search of a place to create an Utopian society. They found a new home across some unknown angry sea in a land not found on any map. Technology was intentionally left behind, and the ship with the educated people–including anyone with any medical knowledge–was lost at sea. Some books did survived the journey (including The Hobbit, LOTR, and the “seven volumes of Rowling”), and these “ancient” texts comprise the entirety of the knowledge of this civilization.
(Ya, I’m really not sure how that works either.)
Unfortunately, the Utopian ideals of the founders didn’t survive the test of time. The people of The Queen of the Tearing now live illiterate lives under the rule of wicked leaders who are a gross characterization of all things wrong with the Catholic Church and a male dominated society. Debauchery is the norm here. Women and children are kept as sex slaves. The Church uses it’s influence to justify evil. And the slave-owning, sex-addicted, immortal, power hungry, magic witch queen in the neighboring kingdom is the worst of all.
This is a bad, bad place.
Enter the hero, the Princess who has been in hiding since birth and raised to become the Queen who will save them all. She’s turned 19 and has come of age. Now she can rightfully claim her crown and save the day by discovering the power of her magic necklaces. And by being awesome.
Except that she’s not awesome. She’s annoying.
These characters stink. They do dumb things. They say dumb things. They did their best to make me roll my eyes and want to skip to the parts where they stop talking.
That sums it up. A story far-fetched enough to be interesting but with characters that make you wish the story sucked too so you could stop reading. I’m actually going to go ahead to the second book, mostly because I already own it…but also because I want to see what happens.
Not sure why I do this to myself.
Adult only. F-bombs that are out of place. Descriptions of violence. Debauchery.
Happy reading! Or not…