court of fives

Court of Fives

1st in the series

by Kate Elliott

Little, Brown and Company; 2015

YA Fantasy

4 cups of tea out of 11

Summary: In a fantasy world reminiscent of Greek and Roman society, Jessamy’s dream is to run and win the Fives, a mental and physical competition. But her life is completely turned upside down when the lord her father works for dies leaving behind massive debt.

Likes: The ending chapter setting up for the revenge narrative. I found Lord Kalliarkos as endearing as Jessamy did. The world-building is complex.

Dislikes: The dialogue is stiff and formal. The ending dragged way too much. Mostly it dragged because of the info dumping.

Overall I found the dialogue issues really grating and that last third was really hard for me to get through. But I’ve read adult epic fantasy by Kate Elliott before and I don’t remember her having dialogue or plot pacing issues. Basically, I know she’s capable of more. Her world-building skill was consistent though. There are a lot of details she takes into account that other authors don’t. I can’t recommend this one. Compared to her adult work it’s inferior. Also compared to other YA fantasy books I’ve read the dialogue and plot pacing are inferior. But I will say that the world-building is superior. I recommend her adult Crossroads series instead. The first is Spirit Gate. For a YA recommendation of a fantasy trilogy inspired by Roman and Greek culture, I choose The Winner’s Trilogy by Marie Rutkoski. The first is The Winner’s Curse.

Content – Violence: Medium because there is a child killed. It’s quick but bloody.

2 thoughts on “Review: Court of Fives

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