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The Broken Crown The Sun Sword: Book One by Michelle West

Review by Caleyna

The Sun Sword series sounded perfect for me. An Asian setting, lots of politics and plenty of strong female leads. I picked this book up with excitement in my heart, ready to be swept away into a foreign world. Before I could get swept away by fantastic characters and a rich world, I was bogged down by confusing writing and confusing events.

The Broken Crown has a convuluted plot which involves demons, mages, concubines and kings. I couldn't keep it all straight. The book is set in a strange world. The south is a typical Asian type world with strong warlord leaders who own many wives and serfs. The North is run by a monarchy, but the kings don't follow in their parents footsteps. Instead, children born with golden eyes, the eyes of demons, rule the land. There are also many powerful houses in the country that influence the day to day events.

Confused yet? I know I am.

The main portion of the plot focuses on a woman with a special magical talent. Teresa is strong willed and independent, using her wit to stretch the leash her brothers have her on. She has a neice, even more strong willed than she who is destined to become an Empress even if she doesn't want such a title. Much of the book focuses on the relationship of these two women and the lengths they go to in order to secure some sense of freedom from the patriarchs of their family.

There's much more to the plot, but it is so complex that I can't hope to explain it all here in a book review. Suffice it to say the book does have very good characters, but the writing style and the plot had me so confused that I dreaded picking up the book and reading it. I bought the next book in the series but after months of picking it up and reading a page or two, I haven't even made the half-way mark. I think Michelle West has a wonderful imagination and great promise as a writer, but she really needs an editor to keep her in check. I'll give this book 3 out of 5 amulets b/c I can recognize that it has a lot of merit, but it just wasn't my cup of tea. Caleyna


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