Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Review: And I Darken by Kiersten White

Title: And I Darken
Author: Kiersten White
Series: Book One in the Conquerors Saga
Published By: Delacorte (June 28, 2016)
Source: ARC Copy Provided by the Publisher (in exchange for an honest review)
Genre: YA Historic Retelling
My Rating: 4 Stars!


Book Description:
NO ONE EXPECTS A PRINCESS TO BE BRUTAL. 

And Lada Dragwlya likes it that way. Ever since she and her gentle younger brother, Radu, were wrenched from their homeland of Wallachia and abandoned by their father to be raised in the Ottoman courts, Lada has known that being ruthless is the key to survival. She and Radu are doomed to act as pawns in a vicious game, an unseen sword hovering over their every move. For the lineage that makes them special also makes them targets.

Lada despises the Ottomans and bides her time, planning her vengeance for the day when she can return to Wallachia and claim her birthright. Radu longs only for a place where he feels safe. And when they meet Mehmed, the defiant and lonely son of the sultan, who’s expected to rule a nation, Radu feels that he’s made a true friend—and Lada wonders if she’s finally found someone worthy of her passion.

But Mehmed is heir to the very empire that Lada has sworn to fight against—and that Radu now considers home. Together, Lada, Radu, and Mehmed form a toxic triangle that strains the bonds of love and loyalty to the breaking point.


From New York Times bestselling author Kiersten White comes the first book in a dark, sweeping new series in which heads will roll, bodies will be impaled . . . and hearts will be broken. 










an·ti·he·ro
ˈan(t)ēˌhirō,ˈan(t)īˌhirō/
noun
noun: anti-hero
1. a central character in a story, movie, or drama who lacks conventional heroic attributes.


There is something appealing, something captivating about a hero that really isn't a hero at all. About a person that can be both so very cruel and dark, as they can be caring and strong.

An almost anti-hero of a story that is every bit as hard to hate as they are hard to love. 

Throw in a legend we have all heard of, Vlad Draculesti (The Impaler) with a slight twist on the story and you have one story that appealed to both the history nerd in me and the one that craves adventure and a strong heroine. 

Our fierce, strong, and mostly scary Vlad is none other than Lada. Yes Lada, as in, a girl. Throw in a bit of history, a bit or truth, a bit of fiction and you have one heck of a story line with an anti-hero that lives up to every bit of the definition itself. 


This book brought out some very real, very intense momma bear feelings in me. Part of me was so proud of Lada for never wavering in her beliefs and at the same time also brought out some intense protective feelings for Radu and all that he had to endure at the hands of virtually everyone. 

I couldn't of loved this story more with holding on to the real feel of the story with the sultan and his harem as well as all the fiction and adventure. It truly was unlike anything I have read in the genre and I'm so very excited to see how else White will exaggerate and expand on it. 





*All thoughts and opinions are my own and were not influenced by the author or publisher. I was not compensated for this review.*


58 comments:

  1. I love Kiersten White, and I don't know how I let this book slip through my fingers. I'm reading it asap. Lovely review!

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    1. She really is great. I still have her one series to read but I definitely have plans too.

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  2. THIS COVER!!! It's just so gorgeous. <3 I haven't read a single Kiersten White book yet (I KNOW!!!) so I'd definitely like to check out this one at some point. Glad to see how much you enjoyed it! :)

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    1. Definitely try her! I loved her Mind Games duology too, so good!

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  3. I absolutely LOVE this author, and can’t wait to dive into this one. I didn’t realise our main character was an anti-hero and based on Vlad the Impaler! That makes this a whole lot more intriguing. Great review!! :D

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    1. It follows the original story a lot actually with it only being a girl instead of a boy and of course some fictional facts thrown in as well to make it more interesting. ;)

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  4. And to think my first instinct was to pass. Silly me. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

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  5. Oooo I so love an antihero Ali!! And I had no idea Lada was based on Vlad. Now I need to read this immediately. *adds to extremely long TBR list*

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  6. It sounds like something a bit different and it's interesting to have a main character like that, I'm curious

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    1. It was different and that definitely made it fun. ;)

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  7. I've struggled with Kiersten White's books in the past, so I'm wary about this one, but man, I'm slowly starting to see that maybe this is a book that I would enjoy. I love the sound of Lada's character. And I'm definitely curious about her being an antiheroine.
    Great review, Ali!

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    1. Sorry you've struggled with them. I guess with this one, you never know until you try. But I did love the blend of history with fiction, it was a very nice twist, if that helps?

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  8. OOH my favorite kind of hero is the dark or anti-hero, Great review!!!

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  9. I just finished this and I'm still reeling from it. It was so very disturbing and strange, but also kind of awesome. I had a love/hate relationship with pretty much everyone and I'm still trying to gather my thoughts.

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    1. It was rather, I don't know sad? In parts. Their dad was a piece of work.

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  10. Great review! I really want to read this so glad you loved it!

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  11. I am so glad to see you enjoyed this one, Ali! :) I've been looking forward to reading this one for a while and am even more excited to hear about the anti-hero aspect (I mean, I should have guessed it but I'm not always quick ;))

    Thanks so much for sharing your review! :)

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    1. I really hope you love it Rashika!

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  12. I'm confused on the cover of this one because I've seen on that looks very different. Anyway, I'm glad you liked this one because I have a copy and I was really hoping that it would be good :)

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    1. There are two covers, this one and the one for overseas. ;)

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  13. I love a good anti-hero and I had no idea this was about Vlad the Impaler. Grabby hands.plus I love the cover!

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  14. I love antiheroes! I wasn't sure about this one and the whole Vlad Leda thing. I'm glad it was good! Now if only it had magic haha!

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    1. Sadly no magic but it didn't need it. ;)

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  15. If it'S that original, then I'm gonna jump on it when it gets released!!! :D

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  16. Great review! You had me at antihero & Vlad. ;)

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  17. Are vampires making a comeback?
    Also, I love KWHite! I haven't read a book by hers that I didn't like or love. She has an easy way of telling the story

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    1. No vampire lore in this, just about Vlad before the Dracula legends. ;)

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  18. I love White, and this book has been on my radar forever, it seems. I'm really happy you enjoyed it - now I'm even more excited about it - great review!
    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

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    1. Thanks so much and I really hope you love it as well. It is definitely classic White. ;)

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  19. Gosh. You know I can't resist an anti-hero. Vicious by VE Schwab is a perfect example! I need this one!

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  20. YAY, I am really looking forward to reading this one. I just wanted to see how White pulls off an antihero and if I could love her as a character. Great review, Ali.

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  21. I'm reading this now, Ali - and the feels, right?!! I can see this bringing out the protective feelings, yet - what she endures seems to so shape her. I hope I enjoy the rest as much as you did *crosses fingers*

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    1. Yes! It is a double edged sword for sure! I hope you love the rest of it Kim.

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  22. I have this on my pile. Another one I didn't get to in time. :( But I'm so happy to hear you enjoyed it. It really does sound unique!

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    1. Hopefully you can get to it eventually and that you like it.

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  23. I haven't started this one yet but sounds like a fab read! Thanks so much for sharing :)

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    1. Thanks for stopping by and checking it out!

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  24. I've read great things about this book. I'm all for a Vlad the Impaler retelling!

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    1. I hope you like it as much as I did!

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  25. Hells to the yeah! You already know my deep love for this book and its characters. We need the next one so bad.

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  26. Well that's a different twist! The anti-heroes are interesting characters. The male lead in one of my lasts would fit that bill. I'm always so torn though I guess that's the point. lol

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    1. It is hard sometimes to both love and hate them.

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  27. I love anti-heroes. This sounds so interesting. Adding to my TBR. Great review. :-)

    Melanie @ Hot Listens & Rabid Reads

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    1. I do too and she is done really well here. So glad you added it!

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  28. I'm very, very excited to read this one. Great opening to the review as well. :D

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    1. Thank you! :D I hope you like it as much as I did.

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  29. YES! I am so excited for this one!!! I just started it and am featuring it tomorrow :) Great review, I'm even more excited noww!!

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    1. Can't wait to see your review for it!

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