Imagine a time when the gods turn a blind eye to the agony of men, when the last of the hellions roam the plains, and evil stirs beyond the edges of the map. A time when cities burn, and in their ashes, empires rise.
Alexander, Macedon's sixteen-year-old heir, is on the brink of discovering his fated role in conquering the known world, but finds himself drawn to a newcomer
Katerina must navigate the dark secrets of court life while keeping hidden her own mission: kill the queen. But she doesn't account for her first love
Jacob will go to unthinkable lengths to win Katerina, even if it means having to compete with Hephaestion, a murderer sheltered by the prince.
And far across the sea, Zofia, a Persian princess and Alexander's unmet betrothed, wants to alter her destiny by seeking the famed and deadly Spirit Eaters.
Weaving fantasy with the shocking details of real history, New York Times bestselling author of Sex with Kings Eleanor Herman reimagines the greatest emperor the world has ever known, Alexander the Great, in the first book of the Blood of Gods and Royals series.
About the Author
Eleanor Herman is the New York Times Bestselling author of Sex with Kings, as well as three other works of nonfiction: Sex with the Queen, Mistress of the Vatican, and King Peggy. Obsessed by all things royal and historical, she lives in McLean, Virginia with her husband and four extremely dignified cats. Legacy is her first novel.
Read an Excerpt
Katerina races across the meadow, scanning for any roots or rocks in her way. Her heart thumps wildly in her chest. Her legs ache. The gazelle leaps slightly ahead of her, its hooves barely touching the grass. It is a blur of tan and white, with long, black-ringed horns; a creature not fully of the earth, but also of the sky.
Ahead of them, the forest looms, and far beyond it, she knows, lie all the villages and woods between Erissa and the capital. A sudden breeze rushes through her tangled brown hair. Her lungs burn. Instinctively she knows the gazelle does not fear her; it is challenging her. She can feel its heartbeat, its heat, its aliveness radiating in her own chest. It wants her to catch up with it.
When Kat was a child, her mother always told her to keep her special understanding of animals' thoughts and feelings a secretsuch knowledge was dangerous. But that was before
Into her mind flows the image of her mother's shining blue eyes, her cream-colored veil slipping from her golden-brown hair. She hears her voice: low, throaty, with just the trace of a Carian accent. Kat is flooded, momentarily, by a sweet, familiar comfort. But then she feels the harsh pang in her throat that always follows, as her memories dissolve into echoing screams.
Kat stumbles and the gazelle leaps ahead, kicking out front and hind legs at the same time. Raw, visceral rage consumes her, forces her to run faster, through a copse of razor-edged grass that rips and shreds her bare legs.
The sun is sliding down toward the horizon. The gazelle casts a brief glance back at her with enormous, moist brown eyes. It's time. It's time, it's time, it's time.
The gazelle dashes into the tree line at the edge of the meadow. Kat surges forward, just inches behind the creature now, focused on the horns, perfectly straight like unlit torches beckoning her, even as the animal darts through the trees. As deftly as possible, Kat follows, dodging branches and ducking beneath low-hanging limbs.
In the next few strides she will be able to touch
She slams into something hard.
Reeling backward toward the ground, she sees blue sky and green branches overhead, grass and mud and blue sky again, and then blackness. Kat realizes that her left cheek is on the ground. She opens her eyes, and they focus slowly.
"Kat!" It's Jacob's voice. "Are you all right? I'm so sorry. I thought you saw me."
Slowly she sits up, rubbing her head, her breath coming in jagged gasps. A pair of strong, tanned legs stands before her, leading up to the broad, commanding form of her oldest friend. The boy Kat has known longer and better, it sometimes seems, than she has known herself. A boy who, until recently, was equal parts playmate and pest. Now, he has grown taller and handsomer and somehow resists falling into either category the way he used to.
Kat cranes to look around him and can no longer see the gazelle's graceful form. She's lost it.
"Here," Jacob says, offering her a hand.
Kat can't get her breath enough to speak, and her head is still spinning, but she grabs his hand and allows him to pull her to her feet.
Jacob raises an eyebrow, making his broad, tan face look a little goofy. "You're a mess," he points out unhelpfully. "And you've cut your legs, Kat." He shakes his head at her like she's a wayward pony who keeps breaking out of its pen.
She brushes herself off, scoffing. "I'm fine, Jacob. At least, I was fine until you got in my way."
"I can't believe you were after that gazelle on foot. You're crazy." He shakes his head.
"You're clumsy," she throws back.
He smiles. "That's me."
She can't help but laugh a little, shoving him out of her way. "Well, now that you've ruined my fun, the least you can do is carry my supplies home. Come on," she says, taking the game bag with knives and nets off her back and tossing it at him.
He catches the bag against his chest. "Holy gods, what's in here?"
She shrugs. "Only some trapping gear."
"Kat, hang on a minute. You can't go back like like that."
She turns to stare at him, still unable to fully take in the new Jacob, the Jacob who has existed for several months now, maybe longerthe Jacob who is more than just a hilarious partner in crime whose broad, muscled shoulders, and lopsided grin keep causing her pulse to stutter just slightly.
"Like what?" she demands, knowing full well she probably looks like a living tumbleweed that's just been dragged across the countryside by a strong wind.
He rolls his eyes. "At least wash off in the pond before we head back for dinner. It's kind of important."
She cocks her head at him, wondering what he's hidingshe can always tell when he's got a secret. When it's clear he's not going to say anything further, she sighs and follows him to the wide, deep pond at the west end of the meadow, where, she knows, wolves and foxes venture out of the woods at dusk to lap its clean water. On the hottest nights of the summer she has even seen a bear and its baby bathing and floating, two dark lumps that could've been fat fallen tree trunks but for the bubbles drifting from their mouths.
She takes off her leather shoes and belt and sinks into the cool water in just her tunic, all the way up to her waist. Her breath is coming more slowly now; her head has stopped spi-raling. She closes her eyes and sighs.
Then she hears a rippling sound. It's Jacob wading in beside her.
"Come on. Why were you after that gazelle?" he asks, laughter in his voice. "I could tell you weren't planning to kill it."
"I was racing it, not chasing." She sinks under the water completely, feeling her hair float around her in the murky silence. Though he knows almost every little detail about Katthe way she likes her goose meat prepared just on the brink of completely charred, the way she nibbles her thumb when she's worried and disappears into the fields when she's sadthis is one thing he doesn't know about, wouldn't understand. This feeling deep in her chest, this perception that others don't share. The way the animals whisper to her in their strange language of hunger and need and drive. Their focus. Their wisdom.
And sometimes, their warnings.
She surfaces, takes a deep breath of air, and rubs the water out of her eyes. "For the first time ever, I was going to catch up. And you ruined it." She splashes water at him.
Jacob turns his head away too late, then begins laughing. He charges back at her with an even bigger splash. She screams, then runs toward the grassy edge of the pond, feeling the water's resistance over her tired legs. He follows her, splashing her back as hard as he can. She turns to splash him again and he stops abruptly, his mouth falling open in surprise.
"What? Scared?" she says, before realizing his gaze is directed not at her face but her body. Kat looks down and gasps. Her unbleached tunic is soaking wet and perfectly transparent. He can see, well, almost everything. Feeling heat rise into her cheeks, she quickly covers herself with her arms.
Moving through the heavy, waist-high water, he reaches her and places his hands on her shoulders, even as she starts to back away. His look is so intense, so full of feeling, Kat suddenly can't move.
His chest rises and falls as though he's having trouble breathing. "Kat, I want to tell you I" He closes his mouth, clearly unable to say whatever it is he's holding in.
Kat can't remember the last time she and Jacob didn't know what to say to each other. The way he's looking at her now, with his hair dripping pond water down his big, strong, square face and shoulders, it's like they are two strangers.
His lips part again, and she feels her whole body start to shiver just slightly.
And then he is leaning in, so close she can smell the familiar, earthy scent of clay dust in his hair, so close his lips touch hers. Suddenly, he pulls her strongly toward him and her arms drop away from her wet tunic, grabbing his back as he kisses her, his tongue softly parting her mouth.
The kiss is slow and hesitant at first, and then, when she doesn't pull away, it grows deeper, and Kat finds herself clinging to him. She can feel his hard strong body against her wet clothes, sending tingles all across her skin.
How could this be happening? her mind is screaming. Jacob is like her brotherno, not brother. Foster brother. Son of Cleon the potter and Sotiria, the people who'd raised her since she was six after after.
Her thoughts melt into feelings so strong they overpower her. He is kissing her eyes, her neck, pressing himself tightly against her wet tunic
They separate so quickly that Kat falls into the water with a hard splash. When she stands, arms crossed over her chest again, she sees Calas, Jacob's little brother, running toward them.
"There you are!" Cal pushes his curls out of his eyes. "Mother wants you both to come home now and help with dinner. It's rabbit stew!"
Rabbit stew? That's Jacob's favorite. Now she knows something is up.
She and Jacob slosh out of the pond and wring the water from their tunics and hair. From her sack she grabs a spare cloth she usually uses for wrapping game and throws it around her shoulders. They sit on the grass to lace their shoes and put on their belts. Then they start following Calas, who is running and skipping ahead, beating the tall grass with a stick.
The silence between them is thick. Kat still can't completely comprehend what just happened. Jacob's hands. His smell. His lips It's all an unreal dream, and yet she knows it was real. And something, some small voice deep inside her, knows that it has been coming for a long time, even if in the moment it felt like a shock.
But what does it mean? Will everything be different now? She shakes her head, unable to process it, trying to focus instead on what the mysterious dinner could be about. "So? What am I missing? Why the celebration?"
Jacob shakes his head. "It's well unexpected," he says slowly, and for the second time that day Kat knows he's hiding something important from her.
"Did Cleon get a big contract?"
"No," Jacob says, smiling sheepishly.
"If you don't tell me right now what it is, I'll" She raises a playful, faux-threatening hand.
He grabs her wrist. "You'll what?" he whispers. Suddenly, she's embarrassed, and turns away.
They keep walking. Finally, it seems the silence is too much for Jacob, too.
"I wanted to wait to tell you," he begins. "Doros and Kyk-nos came from a meeting of the village elders, and believe it or not, I was chosen to be Erissa's contestant in the tournament. I'm going to be in the tournament," he repeats, as though he can hardly believe it.
Kat stops dead in her tracks. The Blood Tournament. The name conjures up images of knives flashing, throats slashed, arms and legs hacked off, eyes gouged out. "They chose you?"
"You don't have to act quite so surprised." For a second, he looks wounded. He clears his throat. "I'm going to do it. I leave tomorrow."
"You can't go," she says quickly. "They'll kill you. You're only seventeen. Some of the contestants are Olympic athletes, professional wrestlers, and soldiers. Think about Bendis!" When their village had sent Bendis to the tournament four years ago, he never returned. "He was twenty-five," she presses on, "and bigger than you, and"
"I've trained with the village militia," Jacob cuts in.
Kat can't help but roll her eyes. "With rusty swords and bent arrows. That training is a joke." You'll get killed. She can't shake the horrible thought from her head, but she can't say it, either. I can't lose you, too.
Jacob plucks a piece of leaf from her wet hair and sighs. "Kat. I'm no good as a potter. It's like Father saysI'm all thumbs. Even Cal can throw a better pot than I can. I need to find my own future, away from here. In case you haven't noticed, I'm a man now, and I need to do something with my life." The words come out hard, determinedit's a side to him she doesn't always see. "It's a great honor," he says, lower now. "The best contestants in the Blood Tournament are chosen to join the king's elite guard, the Hypaspists."
"So you'll leave us," she says. It's the simple truth. Someone may as well say it. Even if her throat aches as she does. "You won't come back."
He runs the back of his hand over her cheek, startling her. "I'll come back," he says softly, "once I have something to offer. Something to offer you." She can see his tan face blushing. "Just, don't don't do anything in my absence."
They've stopped walking again; Cal runs down a dirt road ahead of them.
Something to offer you. She knows what he means, suddenly and seriously, and it's as though she's been plunged backward into the pond all over again.
The kisseverything that happened between them only moments agoit shocked her. Amazed her. She had no idea something like that could happen, with him. She had no idea how much she had wanted it before. She couldn't believe how good it felt, and right. But still, what he's saying now.
It's so much more than that, isn't it? He wants her. Wants to be with her, and have her, only. Not as a sister or friend. As a wife.
And even though her body is still vibrating from his touches, and even though she's tempted to pull him off the side of the road and kiss him again, the idea of wife stops her, freezes her. She wants him. She didn't know it before, but it's so clear now.
But she's not ready. She still has somethingsomething terrible and desperate and secretthat she must do. Deep within her, inside her bones and in her blood, she knows she won't ever be happy otherwise.
She swallows. "I won't do anything in your absence," she says. Because at least that part is true. The village boys who flirt with her mean nothing to her. "But I can't I don't" She stops, at a loss for words.
But he obviously hears her hesitation, sees the stricken look in her eyes, because a wave of pain washes over his face. He takes a step back. "Of course. I understand."
Then he turns and strides briskly away from her.
"You don't," she calls after him, but he doesn't turn around. How can she tell him she needs to finish the unfinished? He would say she was crazy, risking her life for the impossible. He would try to stop her, would ruin everything.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This book was a historical fiction fantasy about Alexander the Great. It focuses on his teenage years before he became the great conquerer that we know from history. I found this to be pretty heavy reading for me because of the density of the writing and it was hard for me to get into at times. I think the characters are well thought out and it is definitely a book for fans of Game of Thrones. I will probably read the sequel because the twist at the end is pretty crazy!
this book it's good I want to own it, I can't wait for the second book comes out.
So upfront, I almost didn't finish this one, but I made it through. About 60% of the way in, things pick up a bit and from 80% on it's much better. The Good There is a lot of political intrigue with so many different characters having different agendas and it's fun to see that play out. There's also some magic thrown in. The few bits of magic we saw were different and I rather enjoyed it. The stories with Kat and Alex were interesting and the ending was sufficiently wrapped up while leaving plenty open for future books. Keep in mind that while Alex is supposed to be a re-imagined version of Alexander the Great, I'm not a history buff and didn't even focus on that aspect at all while reading. Alex isn't really in the story a great deal. The Bad First off, there are a ton of POVs. This is told through third person and switches between the stories of about 7 different characters. I liked the first chapter and thought the book had promise, then it went to a completely different place with different people and by the time I started getting interested in their story, it switched to yet another place with another character and so on. There was no connection for me with these characters until the end where we saw more of Kat and Alex. I understand having multiple POVs but this one would have played out better with just Kat and Alex. The descriptions are very involved. While riding into battle, we hear how the wind feels on the character's face and that they wish to be a bird to watch from above. Instead of intensity in action, we get a lot of words about every little thing that's happening around. The Romance It starts with Kat and Jacob sharing an interest and bond, but we don't see a lot of it as they are split up early in the book to go on their separate paths. Zo has a bit of romance as well. Conclusion This may be one that some would enjoy. Personally, I need a good connection with the characters to get into the story and Legacy of Kings lacks that for me. Also, while the story itself was interesting, it was made much more boring by the endless descriptions and content that would've been better left out. I won't be continuing the series. *Sent for honest review. Originally given 2 1/2 stars at JC's Book Haven.
I would categorize this novel as part fantasy/part historical fiction and Herman does a great job striking a balance. It is clear that Herman did tireless research when describing the details of everyday life of the Macedonians. From her writing she provides a very clear picture of what each character looks like, how they should act given where they are from and their station in life, and what the city of Macedonia looks like. She also is very detailed about the religions of the time period and how greatly they influenced many people’s lives. Despite their being 6 different perspectives to this narrative, Herman did a great job of giving everyone a very distinct voice. I never had to be concerned with getting characters confused with one another. With the great introduction that Herman has provided in this first installment of the Blood of Gods and Royals Series she has plenty of material to continue to provide a thrilling and intriguing story in the remaining 3 books.
ARC kindly provided by Eleanor Herman via Harlequin Teen in exchange for an honest review. Review 'Legacy of Kings' was NUMBER ONE on my to-reads list of 2015 and I had great expectations for it. So eager was I, that when before reading the prequel 'Voice of Gods' I convinced myself that my excitement was overdone and that like many novels I read, the series will probably end up a failure. Well, fortunately for me, it was I who was proved a failure! The prequel was great (a 5 star) and I am currently DIEING of the need to express how excited I am for the real deal. Unfortunately, I can't. If I could self-combust to prove my point, I would. But I shan't. I NEEDED to read this novel and boy am I glad that I did. Eleanor Herman has bravely wielded her pen with power...and officially ruined me for anything else. The novel is written in third person present tense: something I greatly enjoyed. It really allowed for that depth of the story to be conveyed. It allowed me to dig deeper into who everyone was, what was happening and experience – no, LIVE – the story as the characters do. I saw, heard, touched, smelled and tasted in the moment and allowed myself to be entranced in the flow of events. It was a really good choice of style and one I favour for epic fantasies as it really brings about that awesome effect that, if done right, can make a novel THE best. There are multiple character perspectives, each one changing every new chapter. Some may find this annoying or unattractive but I found that it was quite appealing and allowed for an extra perceptiveness for the reader. I am absolutely in love with the range and uniqueness of characters the author has provided, so to be able to experience the story from their point of view was something I greatly enjoyed. The characters whose perspectives we read from are also not limited to Alexander, Katerina, Jacob and Zophia, which was something I expected, but also extended to characters they often interact with. Character development is SOOOOO great that talking about it makes me giddy. It happens so well that you almost don't notice its transition from one to another. All characters were extremely dynamic and they evolved into these persons who were not just characters but people so realistic I would forget that some probably never did exist in reality. Establishment of characters was also aided by the alternating perspectives. Each and every character was fully developed making the novel so much more vibrant and alive. A multitude of personalities and attitudes these characters would have, and the best thing was that no two were the same. Each was an individual with their agendas, motives, histories, distinguishable appearances, flaws, virtues and sins. I can only imagine how big Eleanor Herman's character database was and how many A4 sheets of paper she had to go through whilst developing each and every one. I am in COMPLETE astonishment. Read more at: https://staceykym.wordpress.com/2016/01/18/review-legacy-of-kings-blood-of-gods-and-royals-1-by-eleanor-herman/
Legacy of Kings is a fun book. It’s the kind of book I like to call soap-opera fantasy. A little predictable and unoriginal but overflowing with drama, sexiness and scheming. This book has a HUGE cast of characters. We’re talking seven different POVs. Each one has it’s own unique voice and I had no problems distinguishing between them but I did have difficulties in connecting with the characters. Overall they felt flat. I also didn’t particularly like any of them, except Cyn (of course I adored the cold-hearted and ruthless Cyn) and Zofia. I found myself continuously frustrated by Alex and Heph (SERIOUSLY HEPH – COMMUNICATE WITH ALEX ONCE IN A WHILE), although I really started to like Alex towards the end because he finally started to show some growth. I was pretty much indifferent to Kat and actively disliking Jacob the entire time I read. Olympia was fascinating but lacked nuance. Also SO disappointed in the lack of ships in this book. The synopsis implied shippy feels (and a love triangle that did not exist). Yes there’s a lot of sexiness but nothing that called to my shipper heart. Cyn and Heph are problematic to the extreme. Jacob and Kat did not work for me – there was way too much of a Katniss/Gale vibe to them and just nope. I also was super bothered by Heph’s sudden attraction to Kat. It seriously came out of nowhere and felt forced and completely unbelievable. I did really like the friendship between Kat and Alex and look forward to seeing more of that. What I did love was the plot and the pacing. There are a lot of different threads but most of them tie together and it all kept me completely engaged. I couldn’t put the book down, NEEDING to know what happened next. Also it’s filled with things I love: political intrigue, dangerous magic, powerful women scheming and manipulating the people around them. The pacing was mostly perfect. A lot happens and I appreciated that things were resolved quickly without unnecessary complications. Admittedly there were a few things in the last quarter of the story that felt rushed through but overall I have no complaints. Also I didn’t see the twist at the end coming and I outright squealed I was so delighted. Overall I found this to be a quick, enjoyable read and an intriguing start to the series. I look forward to the next installment. Another note: Obviously this book is not historically accurate so if that’s something that’s important to you this is not going to be the book for you. I’m not super familiar with the story of Alexander the Great but this book made me want to read more about him which is always nice. ALSO: I HIGHLY RECOMMEND reading the prequel novella, Voice of Gods. I read it before starting the book and I greatly enjoyed it.
As you may already know, friends, I love historical paranormals. Like, A LOT. There’s something about the past that makes the magic and the mythology seem more real to me, and the further back in time we go, the stronger this feeling is to me. So it makes sense that Eleanor Herman’s YA debut, LEGACY OF KINGS, would be a book I enjoyed. Alexander the Great is not a historical figure I’ve read much about–fiction or nonfiction–so this was a totally new world for me, and while the magical elements sometimes didn’t scan right or something, Alexander and the other characters made for a really gripping story. There’s a lot going on in LEGACY OF KINGS, I can’t lie. The synopsis up there only mentions six characters, but you could easily add three more to that list of important figures who influence the story fairly significantly. Zofia is kind of out there on her own for now, so I’m curious about how she’s going to meet up with the rest, but the major plotlines with Alexander, Katerina, Hephaestion, and Jacob (plus a few others), are really strong. They are dealing with war, death, suppressed magic, secretive magic, family intrigue, romance, shifting alliances, etc. I was totally invested. I thought that Eleanor Herman, who has written nonfiction about this time period, did a great job recreating that world in LEGACY OF KINGS. It’s brutal, dangerous, and superstitious. The attention to detail in the setting was something that I appreciated as a reader and nerded out over as a history fanatic. Of course, the setting is really just the foundation for all the things. I mentioned before that I had some issues with the way the magical elements blended in with the rest of the story, and that’s really true. It’s a slightly confusing system for me to explain, but there’s basically three different types of magic that flow through the blood of certain people that give them affinities for certain things. Much like other historical societies faced with witchcraft (or what they assumed was witchcraft), the ancient Macedon of Alexander the Great didn’t deal with it all that well, particularly this one group of dudes called the Aesarion Lords. Not only are these Lords expert fighters, they’re also a huge group of witch hunters. This is a problem for several characters in LEGACY OF KINGS. Like I said, the system was a little confusing, and there were times when I thought its place in the story felt a little forced, but it’s still interesting to me. Where I thought LEGACY OF KINGS really shined was in the characters themselves and their relationships. I loved Alexander and his desire to overcome his disability and Katerina and her desire for justice. I had a harder time liking Cynane, Alexander’s half sister, but we’ll see how that turns out. Hephaestion and Jacob are also super complex–Jacob especially. I’m really rooting for him to be the change he wants to see in the world. I would honestly read a book just about these historical (mostly) figures without the magic. In the end, I really enjoyed LEGACY OF KINGS. It was a totally new time period for me to read about, and I got super involved in the relationships between the characters. There’s a twisty sort of thing that I kind of figured out before the reveal, but it just kind of made me more excited. It’s going to be a long wait for book 2!
Legacy of Kings was incredible. It was the perfect blend of historical and fantasy with some seriously addicting characters. Now I am always a little nervous going into books with multiple points of views since there have been times when I find a character boring or pointless and it brings down the book for me but even with all seven...yes that's right seven points of views I enjoyed every minute of it. Every point of view drew me in, I cared about each one of them even the villains were more than just the "evil guys" they had complexity to their characters. I found Legacy of Kings to be fast paced from page one. If I had to pick, Alex and Kat were equally my favorites they both have a lot on their plates and their friendship was just all sorts of awesome. I kind of guessed the big reveal about the two mid-way with all the hints throughout the chapters and if you guys could see the ten pages of notes I took while reading this book you would see how excited I was the whole time with all the numerous exclamation marks in my notes trying to guess then second guessing myself on the two because even though I thought I knew I wasn't a hundred percent sure. Heph was another favorite, he is best friends with Alex and I seriously hope there are more point of views from him in the upcoming books, this guy has seriously won my heart with the few chapters there were of him. I also found Zo's journey very intriguing, she is betrothed to Alex but in Legacy of Kings their paths haven't crossed yet, Zo is going through her own trials right now, meeting some very interesting people, some good, some bad, and some in between like Ochus, I'm not sure what to make of him yet. Zo is not happy with her fate and she is desperately trying to find the Spirit Eaters who have been said can change a person's fate. Another character worth mentioning is Jacob, best friends with Kat. I had a little bit of a love-hate relationship with Jacob and I want to dive in on exactly why but it might be considered spoilerish so I'm just going to say he made some not so good choices and I wanted to slap some sense into him. There were a couple of times I found him to be a bit selfish...actually very selfish! Anyhow even though towards the end of the book he was not my favorite person because of his actions I still loved reading his point of view and am very interested to see how his character progresses. As far as the romance goes, I was at first feeling the whole Jacob and Kat thing to a point. I just felt their romance was too convenient, as in they are all they have known and usually I'm all for the best friends to lovers thing but not with these two. I know Jacob cares deeply for Kat, but he is going about it very wrong. As for Kat I feel she loves Jacob but not "in love" he was too convenient for her, always been there reliable Jacob. Okay yes, I might be a bit biased because even though much hasn't happened I am rooting for Heph and Kat. There was a spark of something between the two, more so from Heph's side of things than Kats but there is chemistry and I'm keeping my fingers crossed for the two. Besides did I mention how much I adored Heph. One thing I am curious about and hope to see explored more in the next book are the gods and why they are now non-existent. Overall Legacy of Kings is definitely one of my favorites of 2015 and I recommend this to anyone who loves a well-written history-fantasy mash up with some unforgettable characters.
2.5/5 Stars I had such high expectations for Legacy of Kings and despite other bloggers telling me that they DNFed this book, I went into it undaunted. Though I was warned about the multiple POVs, I wasn't overwhelmed by the amount of characters' perspectives but after a while, their voices did start to blend together. Legacy of Kings has a lot of realism, sparse dialogue, and little character development. It's very well researched and after reading it, I watched a few documentaries about Alexander the Great and I'm happy to report that Herman used a lot of actual historical facts in her story. While that's a big plus, it also ends up being a weaknesses in the novel because it reads more like a textbook--though a really good textbook. Before this series, Herman was known for her nonfiction work so this isn't surprising. There are fantasy elements in the story that give it more of a fiction feel but it wasn't enough to pull me into the plot. In addition, Herman's writing style lacks emotion, and with her telling instead of showing style of weaving her characters' plots together, I felt very detached from their stories. I am curious about what Herman has in store for this series in the future, but I could just as easily pass it over. Full review: http://www.bookrambles.com/2015/08/legacy-of-kings-blood-of-gods-and.html
Legacy of Kings by Eleanor Herman is a young adult historical fiction novel centered around Alexander the Great. It combines history with magic. It brings a wonderful cast of characters to life. It makes you feel as though you are living in the time period and going through everything with them. In short, this book is fantastic. Legacy of Kings is actually told from multiple view points: Alex, Katerina, Cynane, Zofia, Olympias, Jacob, and Hephaestion. Now, you may think that having so many different narrators will be difficult to follow along with, or that they may all end up sounding as though they are the same person, but you shouldn't worry. The story is written in such a wonderful fashion that you will have absolutely no problem knowing who you are following along at any given point in time and each character does have their own voice. Find the rest of my review here: http://readingwithcupcakes.blogspot.com/
***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog*** Legacy of Kings by Eleanor Herman Book One of the Blood of Gods an Royals series Publisher: Harlequin TEEN Publication Date: August 18, 2015 Rating: 3 stars Source: eARC from NetGalley Summary (from Goodreads): Imagine a time when the gods turn a blind eye to the agony of men, when the last of the hellions roam the plains and evil stirs beyond the edges of the map. A time when cities burn, and in their ashes, empires rise. Alexander, Macedonia’s sixteen-year-old heir, is on the brink of discovering his fated role in conquering the known world but finds himself drawn to newcomer Katerina, who must navigate the dark secrets of court life while hiding her own mission: kill the Queen. But Kat’s first love, Jacob, will go to unthinkable lengths to win her, even if it means competing for her heart with Hephaestion, a murderer sheltered by the prince. And far across the sea, Zofia, a Persian princess and Alexander’s unmet fiancée, wants to alter her destiny by seeking the famed and deadly Spirit Eaters. Weaving fantasy with the salacious and fascinating details of real history, New York Times bestselling author Eleanor Herman reimagines the greatest emperor the world has ever known: Alexander the Great, in the first book of the Blood of Gods and Royals series. What I Liked: Don't pay too much attention to my rating. I hate three-star ratings, because there are positive three-star ratings, and there are negative three-star ratings. This one is more on the positive side. There was one seriously large thing I didn't like about this book, and then a few small ones, but for the most part, I enjoyed it. It took a while for me to regain my interest, but I finished the book quickly after my interest was rekindled. Prince Alexander is named regent in his father's absence. The tournament has just begun, yet danger is all around Macedonia. Hephaestion is Pella's champion in the tournament, and Alexander's best friend. Cynane is Alexander's half-sister, who tries to turn Hephaestion against Alexander. Katerina is an orphan in Erissa, a friend of Jacob. Jacob is a contestant in the tournament, who is in love with Kat and wants to make a better future for her, should she agree to marry him. Zofia is a princess who is in love with a soldier, but will be given to Alexander to marry, if she does not find the Spirit Eaters and change her future. This is a complex story with so many intertwining lives and so much at stake. I LOVE ancient history. Anything medieval, ancient, etc. History is one of my favorite subjects, and so it's no surprise that historical fiction is one of my favorite genres. Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome has always fascinated (one of the first stories I ever wrote as a child was set in Ancient Greece!), and ancient times in Macedonia is a time of particular. I LOVE the story of Alexander the Great! So I was excited to see what Herman came up with, in Legacy of Kings. While I am giving this book three stars, it is not in disappointment! I liked this book and will certainly be reading the sequel come next year. The setting is very high fantasy esque - with kings, queens, betrayals, scheming (SO MUCH SCHEMING), swords, fantastical creatures... it's easy to mistake this for more of a high fantasy novel than anything else. Read the rest of my review on my blog, The Eater of Books! - eaterofbooks DOT blogspot DOT com :)
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