Of Rioters & Royals by m.l. greye ★★★½
"He reached the stream and, with a sigh, dropped onto the damp pebbles along its bank."
This e-book was gifted to me by the author m.l. greye. This does not affect my review or opinion. All thoughts are my own and I'm being 100 per cent honest.
Of Rioters & Royals is an amusing and compelling novel. The book is listed as YA fantasy, but for me it's more a romance novel set in a fantasy world. I also would say it's New Adult (NA) instead of YA, since the characters are older than 20 years. I enjoyed this book, it was an easy read and had entertaining characters.
This story is about two characters. Emry is a Royal - a princess of Enlennd. As is tradition, she must have a knight at her side as her protector. The only way to appoint one is through The Trials. Her Challengers from the five regions of Enlennd must compete for the infamous title of Princess's Knight. The problem, though, is that the people of Enlennd are split into two categories: Rioters and Royals. Finding the perfect knight may be the last of her worries. War is coming to Enlennd.
Declan is a Rioter. An upriser. An anarchist. He mistrusts the Jewels - the sovereign family of Enlennd. Yet, he is offering himself up as a Challenger in The Trials. The Mistress, leader of the Rioters, has a mission for him. The first step is for him to become the Princess's Knight. He is ready for the task, until he actually meets Emry and discovers that betraying her would be much more difficult than he'd thought.
The book starts with a prologue, explaining what happened in the past. It was kind of funny to read since the world the book was set in had a terrible plague and required the population to be in a quarantine. For me though, it was a little long. It was difficult to keep up with all the kings that have ruled Enlennd.
The book itself was well-written, I even learned some words while reading it. The plot was quite interesting though it reminded me a lot of Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. The whole trial thing Declan goes through is similar to what Celaena Sardothien, the character in Maas' story experiences. The story is action-packed, there aren't really dull moments. Greye makes sure every time you think you know what's going on, something totally different happens. Be prepared for a lot of plot twists.
An important element in Of Rioters & Royals is the color of someones eyes. Special powers are attributed to the color of the characters eyes. Greye explains this in the beginning of the story. I absolutely loved that the author put this in the book. It makes the story so much more special and interesting. This detail however makes that someone with silver eyes is kind of overpowered. Emry has silver eyes and can do so much. It feels like Emry has no flaws, which can be annoying sometimes. Every time Emry encounters something, she has a solution.
I started reading Of Rioters & Royals thinking that this was a heavy fantasy novel. It was more a romance novel, which is okay of course but not what I was expecting. The story revolves around the two characters and their love and feelings. The book did have some interesting fantasy elements in it, like the eyes and the powers but they weren't the most important things in the novel.
The end was a bit rushed. I felt like greye could've taken more time to really end the novel. She put so much time and detail in all the other scenes that the end was lacking.
I do think the cover of Of Rioters & Royals is really pretty. The author drew it herself and it's nice to see the eyes of Emry. It gives a better image of how they really look.
Would I recommend Of Rioters & Royals? I would, it is a compelling story. The book is easy to read, with a fair amount of plot twists. If you like a good romance book, I would definitely recommend it.
About the author
m. l. greye is an Amazon Bestselling Author. She writes epic, romantic fantasies for teens and young adults. She believes that no story is complete without some sort of romance and plenty of action. She is a fiction novelist and prefers to write the genre she loves to read: fantasy. Greye was born and raised in Southern California, but has lived in practically every state in the Southwest. She currently lives in beautiful Florida with her husband and three children.
Greye has been writing stories since she could read. Her first series was a collection of short, one-page narratives, titled "The Slena Stories." Over the years, she moved on to writing novels. Her first book, "The Other Worlds," was written during her high school and college days. She graduated from Brigham Young University with a Bachelors in American Studies and minor in Communications. Along with writing, she coaches figure skating. In her free time, she enjoys exploring everything Florida has to offer and skating with her kids.