5 Star Review – You Are Mine by Janeal Falor

September 4, 2013 Reviews 2 ★★★★★

5 Star Review – You Are Mine by Janeal FalorYou Are Mine by Janeal Falor
Series: Mine #1
Also in this series: Mine to Tarnish
Published by Chardonian Press on 5/6/13
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Pages: 273
Source: Won It!
My content rating: YA (Nothing more than kissing, some violence)
My rating:
5 Stars

Serena knows a few simple things. She will always be owned by a warlock. She will never have freedom. She will always do what her warlock wishes, regardless of how inane, frivolous, or cruel it is. And if she doesn’t follow the rules, she will be tarnished. Spelled to be bald, inked, and barren for the rest of her life—worth less than the shadow she casts.

Then her ownership is won by a barbarian from another country. With the uncertainty that comes from belonging to a new warlock, Serena questions if being tarnished is really worse than being owned by a barbarian, and tempts fate by breaking the rules. When he looks the other way instead of punishing her, she discovers a new world. The more she ventures into the forbidden, the more she learns of love and a freedom just out of reach. Serena longs for both. But in a society where women are only ever property, hoping for more could be deadly.
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I won a copy of You Are Mine in a giveaway and was really excited to read it!  SO glad I did!
This is an intense book that will make you want to scream in frustration and horror at some points (in a good way) and will delight you in others.  I absolutely LOVED it!

The story follows Serena, a 17-year-old girl who has just come of age – the age at which she can be sold to a warlock as a breeding machine and slave. Serena lives in a society where women are nothing more than property – completely controlled by their overbearing and often abusive warlock husbands. She doesn’t dare dream of happiness – she merely hopes to be sold to a lesser evil than her father. But when her ownership is won by an Envadi barbarian, Serena fears that things will be much worse for her than she ever imagined. Her fiance, Zane, gives her more freedom than she expected, though – and Serena starts to wonder how far she can push this freedom and whether or not she can survive the consequences.

The negatives:

  • Slightly predictable love interest.  I knew as soon as they called the Envadi “barbarians” that they were going to turn out to be the most civilized people of the bunch.  There was no surprise here – and it was obvious to the reader right away that Serena was reading her Envadi fiance wrong. In some books this would really bother me, but I was actually okay with it for the most part in this book. It made sense – Serena truly couldn’t conceive of a world where men didn’t treat women with disdain or want to control and even harm them.

What I LOVED:

  • The concept.  This book is such an extreme example of gender inequality – it will make you want to scream sometimes because of the horrors that the women go through and especially because many of the women accept their fates without question. It’s horrible! But it’s horrible in such an amazingly wonderful way, in my opinion.  The book casts light on gender inequality, slavery, xenophobia and classism.  And all of these things are completely accepted – in some ways even by Serena.  The book challenges us to see how we perceive life through society’s filters. Right and wrong are completely skewed in Serena’s society, but they aren’t seen as such (except by the minority) because people just accept the norm. There are characters in this book that you will hate, some you will love, some who you will pity and still others who will inspire you!
  • Serena.  Serena is such a complex character, which I loved. She sometimes yields to what society expects from her and sometimes breaks the mold. She shows great strength and courage at times and cowers in fear and subservience at others. She can be loving and open and yet still harbors prejudices based on the misconceptions that she has been taught throughout her lifetime. In short, she felt like a real person who might live under such horrible circumstances. No, she wasn’t the perfect heroine who stood up for herself and fought against the establishment at every turn, but if she was, she wouldn’t seem very realistic in my opinion. She didn’t just blindly believe that she’s nothing more than a possession either. She was a believable mix – strength and altruism and fragility all in one.
  • The romance.  I appreciated the fact that the romance in this book didn’t overshadow the rest of the story. It was definitely central to the story, but it wasn’t the entire book. The romance was also anything BUT love at first sight! It moved slowly, which was completely necessary under the circumstances.
  • The twists.  There were a few twists at the end of the book that I did not see coming at all (and one that I kind of saw coming, but that I was definitely not sure about). Honestly, as the book neared the end, I wasn’t at all sure what was going to happen to Serena or Zane. I love when I can say that!

You Are Mine is a fantastic read that will keep you up all night reading.  I highly recommend this book and can’t wait to see what Falor has in store for us in book #2!  5/5 stars.

2 Responses to “5 Star Review – You Are Mine by Janeal Falor”

  1. Bregje

    I remember seeing this book before and thinking that it didn’t look really interesting, but now that you mentioned it in your Top twelve fantasy/dystopian post I read a little more of what it was about and I have to say it actually sounds really good! I really like books that focus on (in)equality and gender roles so I’ll be sure to check this one out!

  1. Top Twelve Indie Books for Readers Who Like Dystopians/Fantasy/Paranormal - Feed Your Fiction AddictionFeed Your Fiction Addiction

    […] You Are Mine by Janeal Falor – This book stirs up a little bit of controversy because of the way women are treated in the society that Falor created, but that’s kind of the point. I thought that the message was clear that the fact that women were second-class citizens was wrong. The second book in this series was great too (and the novella), but I especially adored the first! […]

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