Another day another book review another 9,000 words I have to write for work on nursing interventions for people who have diabetes. Weeeeeeeeeee. You guys still think I’m a cool writer even though I write educational manuals right? …guys?
Rating: 3.5 stars
Being a bastard blows. Tilla would know. Her father, Lord Kent of the Western Province, loved her as a child, but cast her aside as soon as he had trueborn children.
At sixteen, Tilla spends her days exploring long-forgotten tunnels beneath the castle with her stablehand half brother, Jax, and her nights drinking with the servants, passing out on Jax’s floor while her castle bedroom collects dust. Tilla secretly longs to sit by her father’s side, resplendent in a sparkling gown, enjoying feasts with the rest of the family. Instead, she sits with the other bastards, like Miles of House Hampstedt, an awkward scholar who’s been in love with Tilla since they were children.
Then, at a feast honoring the visiting princess Lyriana, the royal shocks everyone by choosing to sit at the Bastards’ Table. Before she knows it, Tilla is leading the sheltered princess on a late-night escapade. Along with Jax, Miles, and fellow bastard Zell, a Zitochi warrior from the north, they stumble upon a crime they were never meant to witness.
Rebellion is brewing in the west, and a brutal coup leaves Lyriana’s uncle, the Royal Archmagus, dead—with Lyriana next on the list. The group flees for their lives, relentlessly pursued by murderous mercenaries; their own parents have put a price on their heads to prevent the king and his powerful Royal Mages from discovering their treachery.
The bastards band together, realizing they alone have the power to prevent a civil war that will tear their kingdom apart—if they can warn the king in time. And if they can survive the journey . . .
So I literally grabbed this book at Barnes and Nobel because it has the word “Bastard” in it. It’s just a funny word and it always makes me laugh!
This book is a fun read, there are a few parts that had me laughing out loud and then a few parts where I gasped and my husband was like, “is everything okay?” And I was like, “Oh it’s just this book I’m reading” and he was like, “You bastard!!”
It wasn’t a super bingeful read, it wasn’t like I couldn’t put it down, but it was still exciting read. I felt like it really picked up about 50% through and then it was easy for me to zip right through it!
- THE CHARACTERS! Omg. I love these bastards. Tilla and Jax are the brother and sister relationship I always wanted to have! (No offense to my real life brothers…) I really could see that they loved each other and I loved how they joked and played around. Tilla really wants her dad’s approval even though she really doesn’t want to want to have that approval. I like how she was struggling with this throughout the book. Jax is just crass and hilarious. I wanted more time with Jax in this book but there were a lot of characters so I understand it couldn’t just be all about him! Zell is this strong dark and mysterious guy. I liked him alright. Maybe I didn’t like him as much because Jax was so awesome. There’s only one male character I can love in this book and it’s Jax!
- The friendships. I love these idea of all these abandoned characters that have to band together for survival and they develop this friendship over shared experiences. The friendships that develop and the comradery is so special in this book. It wasn’t just a big love story, it was a friendship story. I really really enjoyed that. There are so many sweet and special scenes in this book where all the bastards are together and just having fun or working together that made my heart swell!
- The survival element of this story was so intriguing! It didn’t really get unputdownable to me until later on in the book, but I was genuinely wondering if every one of these characters were going to die by the end of this book! There were so many people out to get them! Weird creatures, armies, mercenaries, literally everyone in the entire kingdom, oh and Razz, Zell’s psychotic brother! Geesh! It was intense at time!
- Magic. Magic is just always fun. I want to know more about it in the next book! Ooooooo!
- I was confused about the setting and the history of this book. It was told in an info dump setting where Tilla is explaining everything to Zell and I was like “OMG am I reading a history lecture??” I didn’t really absorb much information when it’s told that way…sorry.
- I don’t really understand books where characters are fighting to avenge something that happened hundreds of years ago…Is England gonna come back and attack America now because they’re pissed about the Revolutionary War? I don’t think so. Don’t you think they’d be over it by now? I didn’t really get why they’re still so mad about what happened so long ago. And from what I read, the new rulers weren’t even oppressive. I felt like Tilla this whole book! Whose side are we even on here??? But maybe that’s how you’re supposed to feel and maybe I should like that instead of dislike it….mind warp.
- Miles is an uppity little wuss (I’ve already said bastard a bunch of times so I’m trying to keep it mild on the names I call this character.) I felt like all these characters came into great elements where they were tested and they were awesome and even when Miles had his moment I still didn’t like him. But I don’t know if this is necessarily a bad thing for the book, I just didn’t like Miles. He’s always making rude comments to Jax. Don’t talk about Jax like that Miles!!
This is a separate point because I’m not sure if this is a spoiler or not. Maybe it’s a spoiler. It’s spoiler-ish. You can choose to read this point if you don’t mind mild spoilers.
- Call me prude or whatever, but I think that sex is special and I don’t like how it went down in this book. That’s all I’m gonna say.
Mild spoiler ish over!
Overall, I liked this book. I recommend it because it’s funny and I like Tilla and all these other bastards. It’s not heavy romance it’s heavy friendship. And that’s why I liked it.
Have you read this one yet? It has the word bastard in it so you should!