RELEASE DATE: September 15, 2015
AUTHOR: K.A. Linde
GENRE: Young-Adult, Fantasy, Romance
On the day of her Presenting, in front of the entire Byern Court, seventeen-year-old Cyrene Strohm’s lifelong plans come to fruition when she’s chosen for one of the most prestigious positions in her homeland—an Affiliate to the Queen.
Or so she thinks.
When Cyrene receives a mysterious letter and an unreadable book, she finds nothing is as it seems. Thrust into a world of dangerous political intrigue and deadly magic, Cyrene’s position only grows more treacherous when she finds herself drawn to the one man she can never have…
King Edric himself.
Cyrene must decide if love is truly worth the price of freedom.
This book could’ve been my next favorite fantasy read if it wasn’t for the insta-love portrayed in it which pretty much ruined my enjoyability. When I read the premise of this book, it sounded like an exciting read with forbidden romance but I wasn’t expecting the cliched insta-love. I hate insta-love romance because they always annoy me so It’s a serious case of it’s not you, it’s me. I’m not saying it was entirely bad because I loved the plot, the setting and also the wonderful writing of the author. If you don’t hate insta-love romances then you might enjoy this book more than I did. I’m not familiar with K.A. Linde’s other works and this is my first book from her and I loved her writing style. I’ve heard this was her first YA fantasy book and she really did a good job in weaving this story and I really hope it improves in the next book.
In the kingdom of Byern, every year they conduct a presenting ceremony rite for everyone who turned seventeen. At the ceremony they are assigned a duty either in first class, second class and third class. The first class are assigned to the monarchs, the second class and third class citizens are assigned in military, merchants and farming. Seventeen year old Cyrene is a first class citizen who’s been training hard since young to get placed in the first class just like her brother and sister. At the ceremony, she gets selected in the first class and placed in a most prestigious position, an affiliate to the queen. She also gets the attention of the handsome King Eric whom she feels drawn to but she can never have him. When she receives a mysterious letter and an unreadable book that only she can read, Cyrene begins to search for the hidden secrets. While on her search, mysterious murders happen around the castle that might be connected with her. With her feelings growing stronger for the king, Cyrene needs to make a decision between her freedom and love.
Cyrene is a strong female protagonist but I can’t say she’s my favorite either. She’s brave, strong, adventurous and loyal. The only thing I hated about her was her strange attraction to the king who is also married to another woman. King Edric is handsome, regal and protective. Honestly, I wasn’t impressed with his character and I can’t connect with him either. Prince kael is cunning, flirty, mysterious character who seems to have hidden motives. When Cyrene rejects his attention, he takes it as a challenge. Both brothers vies for cyrene’s attention but Cyrene only has eyes for one guy *cliche much*. I can’t help but roll my eyes with how cyrene and King Edric gets enamored with each other. I wouldn’t even care if Cyrene ends up with prince Kael. I’m glad the romance isn’t the central focus of this book because I didn’t liked the romance in this book and I also didn’t cared much about it. I like triangles only if they excite me but this one didn’t even excite me a bit. I’m fan of slow burn romance with angst and tension which this book heavily lacked. As for the secondary characters, I liked Cyrene’s friends Rhea, Ahlvie and Maelia. I enjoyed the girl friendship between Cyrene and Rhea and I want more of it.
The plot is engaging, mysterious and unique. Though I didn’t enjoyed the romance, I really enjoyed the story and the world the author has created. The story moved in a fast pace and there’s never a dull moment. Even though some parts of the story is predictable, it never stopped me continuing the book. The whole book is told in third person perspective. I loved the writing style of this book, it was addictive and I flowed through it easily with out any struggle. I enjoyed the world the author has created with unique customs and culture and I’d love to know more of this world.
Overall, I liked it! With the appearance of the mysterious braj, the story became more interesting. Honestly, I would’ve given it a four star rating if there isn’t a super insta-love in this book. The story finally concluded with a minor cliffhanger with so many questions left unanswered and I might read the sequel just to find out what happens next.
The Affiliate is a first book in the YA fantasy series Ascension. It’s an engaging read filled with adventure, magic, political intrigue and romance. Despite my issue, I would definitely recommend this to every one who loves YA fantasy.
So, What do you think of this book? Please Feel Free To Comment Below. ❤