Furborn (Empirium #1) by Claire Legrand (2018)
YA Fiction | Fantasy
“Follows two fiercely independent young women, centuries apart, who hold the power to save their world…or doom it.
When assassins ambush her best friend, the crown prince, Rielle Dardenne risks everything to save him, exposing her ability to perform all seven kinds of elemental magic. The only people who should possess this extraordinary power are a pair of prophesied queens: a queen of light and salvation and a queen of blood and destruction. To prove she is the Sun Queen, Rielle must endure seven trials to test her magic. If she fails, she will be executed…unless the trials kill her first.
A thousand years later, the legend of Queen Rielle is a mere fairy tale to bounty hunter Eliana Ferracora. When the Undying Empire conquered her kingdom, she embraced violence to keep her family alive. Now, she believes herself untouchable–until her mother vanishes without a trace, along with countless other women in their city. To find her, Eliana joins a rebel captain on a dangerous mission and discovers that the evil at the heart of the empire is more terrible than she ever imagined.
As Rielle and Eliana fight in a cosmic war that spans millennia, their stories intersect, and the shocking connections between them ultimately determine the fate of their world–and of each other.”
pooled ink Review:
What is wrong with me???
This book has been hyped up and even besides all the promotion for it I’ve been excited to read this book ever since they first announced it! It’s got a really interesting premise, a fantastic cover, and so many of my bookish friends enjoyed reading this one. And yet I can’t even make it to the end.
I usually love fantasy books (both YA and Adult) so even if this wasn’t a home run for me I should’ve at least enjoyed myself well-enough to settle on a 3-star rating. But I’ve been picking up and putting down this book for weeks since buying it, unable to feel excited to actually start. Then I set aside a few days to specifically knock this one out but after three days of slow disinterested reading I decided to call it quits. I simply couldn’t get myself to care about it and I’m not entirely sure why. Maybe it’s as simple as not being in the right mood for it. I’ll try reading it again later probably.
I can’t review the book as a whole since I didn’t read it all, but from what I read I just don’t think I clicked with the voice of the writing. Rielle came across to me as a self-entitled teenage girl with boys on the brain and Eliana came across to me as a cocky show-off who’s supposed to be a bigger badass than she really is. They both just had this “air” that came through in the writing that made them both seem as if they felt a bit too highly of themselves and it irked me. Rielle was supposed to be a character who develops into a great queen who shows great devotion and sacrifice while Eliana was supposed to be this epic wraith of the underworld with a hidden destiny even bigger than she could possibly dream. But despite these promises of character development I couldn’t keep myself engaged long enough to witness it.
To put it bluntly, I was bored.
It does open with quite the dramatic opening. Although unfortunately it came across as a bit over-the-top and counteracted the intended intrigue it was supposed to create. There was lots of screaming, desperate pleas, chaos, confusion, destruction, dire warnings, etc. but instead of building up an atmosphere of great drama and exhilaration, it went too far and ended up almost comical and ridiculous (a bit like a low-budget fantasy film trying to overcompensate for said low-budget and perhaps even a semi-lackluster script).
Now plenty of people have made this a top read so please don’t let my opinion stop you from reading this book because you might end up loving it and thinking I’m absolutely crazy. I’m definitely keeping this book on my bookshelf because I’m sure in a year or two I’ll give it another chance and who knows, maybe that time I won’t be able to put it down and I’ll have to write a whole new review. But for now, I’m afraid it’s in the DNF (Did Not Finish) pile.
Furyborn has a darkly imaginative premise but suffers from characters too juvenile to support it, however one person’s bored opinion does surely not negate the hundreds of admiring opinions supporting this highly-anticipated novel.
Purchase Here: Furyborn
Meet Claire Legrand!
Claire Legrand used to be a musician until she realized she couldn’t stop thinking about the stories in her head. A native Texan, she is now a writer and librarian living in central New Jersey.