Series: The Remnant Chronicles #2
Also in this series: The Kiss of Deception
Published by Henry Holt and Company on 7/7/15
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
My content rating: YA (Nothing more than kissing, Some violence)
Held captive in the barbarian kingdom of Venda, Lia and Rafe have little chance of escape. Desperate to save Lia's life, her erstwhile assassin, Kaden, has told the Vendan Komizar that she has the gift, and the Komizar's interest in Lia is greater than anyone could have foreseen.
Meanwhile, nothing is straightforward: There's Rafe, who lied to Lia but has sacrificed his freedom to protect her; Kaden, who meant to assassinate her but has now saved her life; and the Vendans, whom Lia always believed to be savages. Now that she lives among them, however, she realizes that may be far from the truth. Wrestling with her upbringing, her gift, and her sense of self, Lia must make powerful choices that will affect her country... and her own destiny.
The Heart of Betrayal is the second book in the Remnant Chronicles, and it’s just as heart stopping as the first! I adored Kiss of Deception, but a lot of that was because I was so blown away by the character twist – I wondered if it was possible for the second book to measure up now that we’d gotten that twist out of the way. Well, it did. Have to say that I enjoyed pretty much every minute of reading this book!
What fed my addiction:
- Betrayal. The book is aptly named. There’s a lot of betrayal going on – and Lia herself doles out her fair share. There is nothing she won’t do to get herself and Rafe out of Venda, and she’ll lie through her teeth if that’s what it takes to do it. A lot of that lying is aimed at Kaden. You can’t help but feel a little sorry for him, but at the same time, I was glad that Pearson didn’t take the route of actually continuing the love triangle (though there are definitely elements of the love triangle in this book, Lia has definitely made her choice.) Lia is incredibly torn when it comes to Kaden because she can see that he genuinely cares for her – and she uses that. It sometimes makes her feel horribly guilty, but it’s her only recourse for survival!
- More magic. The presence of magic is increased a bit in this book. Lia’s visions start to play a much larger role in the story as a whole, and they’re especially important when it comes to her relationship with the people of Venda. She also learns more about the history of Venda and Morrighan and starts to see the world through new eyes. Which brings me to my next point …
- Blurred lines. Lia discovers that the world isn’t as simple as she once thought. The Vendans aren’t all barbarians who simply want to destroy Lia’s people. Even the Komizar who holds her captive proves to be a more complex man than she ever imagined. He is shrewd and cunning and often brutal, but he also seems to truly care for his people and have their best interests at heart. Lia starts to realize that a life in Venda might shape a person differently than a life in Morrighan, but that the Vendans aren’t so very different than her people after all!
- The ending. I truly wasn’t sure where everything was headed until I got to the very end of the book (and there are still some very exciting things left up in the air). There were so many directions that Pearson could have taken this story, and I couldn’t wait to find out what would happen next!!
What left me wanting more:
- Not much. I’m sure there were things that bothered me a little, but I honestly can’t think of any of them now.
This was an excellent sequel that completely avoided middle book syndrome and led us into book three flawlessly. I can’t wait for the next one!! I give this book 5/5 stars.
About the Author
Mary E. Pearson is the award-winning author of The Jenna Fox Chronicles, The Miles Between, A Room on Lorelei, and Scribbler of Dreams. She writes full-time from her home office in California where she lives with her husband and two golden retrievers.
Wow, I NEED to start this series!! I own the first and second, so I have no excuse. So glad to see how much you enjoyed it! 🙂
Yes, yes!! Read it!
Wow… it’s not often the second book in the series can follow on such a strong first book, but it sounds like The Heart of Betrayal did just that. It sounds like it gave you more of everything you loved about the first book. And to not see how the ending was coming! So good!
Yeah, I’ve read a few books lately that have fallen into that sophomore slump, but not this one!
That’s great you really loved this one – you just never know with sequels. I haven’t read any of these, but I appreciate your thoughts on it! Books with magic can always be interesting. 🙂
I love magical books, so I knew this one was right up my alley. Like you said, though – you never know with sequels, so I was really glad this one measured up!
Great review. I kind of had to skim it because I still have not read Kiss of Deception. I really need to because it seems like both books have gotten really good reviews.
Yes – you should definitely read them! They’re so good, and I think you’d love them!
I haven’t read this series yet, but I plan to do it for my A Series A Month when the third releases. I’ve heard so many great things! And I’m so glad that the love triangle is pretty much over and done in this book.
Great review, girl!
This would be a great one to do for that challenge. I’ve seen you talk about that – is it an official challenge that you run, or is it just something you do for yourself? I think a series a month is a great goal!!
aww I think I would have wanted more magic too but its awesome how much you enjoyed this
I ADORED the first book, and I was worried this one wouldn’t live up to my expectations – but luckily, it did!
I loved this sequel as well. The author just kicked so many door open, I have no idea where we are headed. I really need to find out who Lia ends up being happy with, so many to choose from…
I know – I’m really curious where Pearson is going to go with the story next!
I only just liked the first book but with your five star review, you are making me want to give this series another try!
Well, I did adore the first book, but part of that was because I was blindsided by the character twist. I would definitely give it another try – maybe wait and see what people think of the final book?
Don’t you just love when the sequel to a book is just as epic as the first one was? It always makes me so happy, which makes me happy that you were able to love this one. Books with betrayal always intrigue me because you don’t know who has betrayed who or why in any case.
YES! I was very happy that this one lived up to the first book!
I’ve stayed away from this series because of the love triangle that’s ever present here. But the 5-star rating you just gave this book has me rethinking things.
There is a bit of a love triangle in the first book, but I think you could tell pretty early on who she was going to choose – and she doesn’t waver in this book. Maybe that helps?
LOVEEDDD this book! I agree, there was absolutely NO middle book syndrome here! I am so excited to find out what happens in August (sobs, as it seems SO far away!), and I already pre-ordered The Beauty of Darkness! Such a good series, I am so glad you’re loving it too!
Such a relief, right? I adored the first book and I was so scared to read this one …
I keep hearing how great this book is. I have to find time to read the books. Great review 🙂
I know – finding time can be the tricky part. SO many amazing books to read!!
I’ve heard a lot of great things about this series. However, I was hesitant to read it because of the love triangle situation so I’m glad that it’s resolved in this book. I think I might wait until the final book comes out so I can binge read the series. 😀
I just finished the Kiss of Deception recently and I can’t wait for Heart of Betrayal!!! It took me a long while to pick of this book, since everyone says that it was a love triangle, it’s a love triangle. And i was afraid that i’m going to read something like Twilight: the female characters fall in love with both of the male characters and both of them also love the first characters. I think that is horrible. But in this series, from the beginning…I think the author gives us a clear check that Lia will be with Rafe. Even when they haven’t met!!! (I won’t complain at all…i totally ship Lia and Rafe. Just…a little sorry for Kaden. He’s a nice character.)
Yeah, I agree with you. The first book is less of a love triangle and more of a situation where two guys like the same girl. Sure she notices Kaden, but I think it was always pretty obvious who she was going to end up with. (Once I figured out who was who!)
I just finished this book, and it was really good, but it reminded me of a book I read a while ago. It was the first in a series that was just started, so I wrote a reminder… but then I lost it. I can’t remember the title, but there’s a chance you may have read it…
…It takes place in a city, kind of like the Roman empire, and the original occupants are enslaved. The protag is the daughter of a general, and she falls in love with the (enslaved) smith, who starts a revolution and overthrows her people. All the roles are switched, but she escapes to warn the emperor in a rowboat, and beg for her beloved’s life. The emperor agrees to let the city be independant, but only if she agrees to marry his son. The book ends with a twist- she chooses to marry the son, even though it seemed like she couldn’t bring herself to. It was so dramatic! I can’t remember any names.
Some other snippets of memory: She bargains with the ex-slaves to get a plant to heal her friend, even though they want her to die. A guy tries to force his affections so she challenges him to a duel and won. (it was a false climax before the uprising. was cool.)…
I can’t think of anything else, and I’m sorry for bothering you, but does anything ring a bell? Are there any other, similar books I can read if I can’t find it, that you’d recommend?
I’m so sorry I didn’t answer this sooner—I got way behind on comments. I DO know what this book is—It’s The Winner’s Trilogy by Marie Rutkowski. You’ve probably found someone else to give you this answer by now, but I thought I’d reply, just in case!
No, I actually haven’t! Thank you so, so much! I had just given up on ever finding out what happens next! 😀
Oh, then I’m glad I could help! Yay!