Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Review: Avenged - Amy Tintera

Amy Tintera
Series: Ruined, #2
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Publisher: HarperTeen
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Reading Challenges: #NGEW2017

Can we just get a round of applause for Tintera, as this book does not suffer not one iota from second book slump.

Avenged resumes the story with Emelina and the Ruined returning to Ruina. Em and Olivia must both adjust to being back as they develop a plan of how to restore their kingdom to its previous glory. Emelina hopes to rebuild, while Olivia is bent on revenge. Meanwhile, Cas is reeling from the death of his parents and the invasion of his own kingdom, but he also has to battle to keep his place on the throne since his own cousin is trying to usurp him. Both Cas and Em want peace, but will they be able to convince others that this is the right choice?

I reread my Ruined review, and found that all the things I loved in book 1, are still there in book 2, but there are also more things to love.

  • If you didn't love Emelina before, you are sure to love her now. She continues to be a strong and ardent leader, who is extremely dedicated to her people. There are a lot of compromises she makes or considers making in this book for the sake of her kingdom. I fully understand why she is willing to make these sacrifices, but my heart just can't let my brain lead on this one, and I found myself quite frustrated at times. 
  • Cas is still my favorite after this book. That man is so swoony. The way he laid all his cards on the table and was all in for a relationship with Em made my heart pitter patter. I like that he had some challenges, and that he had to reach deep inside and make some tough decisions. He actually grew a lot during this book, and I am eagerly awaiting what is next for him in book 3. 
  • This is such a Romeo & Juliet type love story, in that Cas and Em are from kingdoms that hate each other, but they still cannot resist their love. Even when they try, the universe continues to bring them back together.  It's kind of beautiful that they can see the person beyond the race, and this idea is woven throughout the story. The more the story unfolds, the more we learn that not everyone hates the ruined. We learn about all the people, who actually advocated for better treatment of the Ruined or who don't hold any preconceived opinions of them, but rather take them on a person by person basis. 
  • Tintera expanded this world for us. We traveled to the southern part of Lera, as well as Oslo and Ruina. Tintera did a great job revealing the new parts of this world, and made a few interesting choices as well (Oslo!). I had to do a double take, when I first saw what she introduced in Oslo, but I guess they needed some way to be able to hold their own against the Ruined. 
  • Several villains emerged, with Olivia and Jovita emerging as the biggest threats. Jovita is making her power play in a traditional way, while Olivia is just plain crazy. Seriously, I am worried about her, and I hope that Em will be able to handle her. 
  • We meet some new characters, while others play a larger role in the story. I really liked the addition of Violet, yet another fierce female, who becomes quite an important friend and confidant to Cas, and the expanded role of Iria. Yes, Iria fast emerged as someone I was very fond of, but mostly because of her entanglements. Another character who got a lot of page time was Aren. As one of the strongest Ruined, I knew he would serve an important purpose, but Tintera let him become so much more, and I am looking forward to see what she has in store for him in the next book. 
Overall: Another great adventure with augmented political drama, battles, and nefarious plots. This one has definitely left me wanting for the next book, because I know something HUGE is going to happen. 

**I would like to thank Edelweiss and the publisher for the advanced copy of this book

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  1. I just bought Ruined this past week and am really excited to start this series. It is so nice to learn that the second book is so strong. Great review!

    1. Ruined won me over. It was fast paced, interesting, and you know me, I love a good romance. =)

  2. I LOVED this book too! What a great series! Cas and Emelina are just amazing. I'm so glad I read it!

    1. I know! I cannot get enough of Cas and Em. I am hoping for no more relationship drama in the next book, since Tintera has all that crazy stuff to deal with.