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Review: Allegiance (Cayla Kluver)



Product Details:
Reading Level: YA
Pages: 490
Publisher: HarperTeen (February 28, 2012)
Source: e-ARC from NetGalley
Read it in: 3 days



Allegiance (Legacy, #2)

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....




First off, do not start a series without reading the first book. Just don’t do it. As I read this book, it became painfully obvious that I was missing a lot of emotions because I didn’t read Legacy. I had no idea about the passion and depth behind Alera and Narian’s relationship. So of course, I instantly started liking Steldor. (Gasp.) I couldn’t help it. Even with his chauvinistic views and mannerisms, I still liked him. Actually, I felt sorry for the way Alera always treated him. As the book went on, I figured out how deeply Alera cared for Narian, so that part of the plot made sense by the end. (Even if I did find it disappointing.)

The plot was intricate. The author does an amazing job with building the world that her characters live in. The descriptive details used painted vivid images within my mind on every page. I felt like I was living in this magical land along with the characters. Absolutely stunning. The purposeful skill that the author has was evident on every single page.

The plot seemed slow at times. I’m not sure if “slow” is the proper term to describe it either. Every event seemed to steadily add to the plot until the climatic turning point. With a 490 page book, that climax didn’t arise until near page 400. That’s a long time to wait! Was it worth the long wait? Pretty much. It helped me understand the events more and feel like I was part of the characters. Did I like the characters more because of the wait? Eh. I still stand by Steldor, sorry. Caanan, London, Haitus, and many of the other male characters in the book also tugged at my heart. They were stoic and brave. I loved them. But, for a book that juxtaposes the strength of male versus female rulers, the women in this book fell a little flat. Alera was border line irritating at times. She had these moments that were brilliant, and you could sense her inner strength. But then she would turn around and do something to unbelievable immature that I had a hard time believing she was eighteen. Storming off in the woods after your horse was taken, just to prove a point? Pretty stupid. Of course, Steldor acted pretty immature at times too with his handling of Alera’s defiant behavior.

I would have enjoyed this book so much more if I had the backstory from Legacy. I appreciate that the author didn’t employ the “info dump” to fill in those gaps for people like me. That would have ruined this book. If you haven’t read Legacy, you need to do your homework before starting this one. Read the book. Read reviews. Whatever. Do something to understand the relationship between Alera, Narian, and Steldor before reading Allegiance.

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