Title: The Queen’s Rising (Untitled Trilogy #1)
Author: Rebecca Ross
I think the Young Adult Science-Fiction/Fantasy genre has become diluted with so many books that follow the same setting/plot/characterization structure that it’s hard to go into any new ones without a sense of apprehension. If I’m being completely honest, this book was only mildly on my radar, and only because the heroine’s name is Brienna, which is the closest any character has come to having the same name as me. I’m so happy to be able to write this review and say that no only did The Queen’s Rising bypass my expectations, but I also very thoroughly enjoyed reading it as well.
The world-building and atmosphere that Rebecca Ross creates is both unique and refreshing for the genre. It made the story so much more enjoyable and easier to get into because it didn’t feel like something I’ve read ten times over already. The writing and pacing was expertly done and I easily became enthralled by the story and the characters. As someone with a minor (okay, major) obsession with their Irish heritage, I loved that Ross drew inspiration for the Maevana setting from ancient Ireland/Scotland, including the use of Irish/Scottish names. There was romance present, but it was very minor and did not take away from the story at all, and I think it was wonderfully done. There is a bit of an age difference between Brienna and the love interest, but it didn’t bother me at all (actually, I was kind of digging it, I won’t lie) and for the most part doesn’t present much of an issue.
All in all, I was super happy that The Queen’s Rising was a welcome change to read, especially when compared to many other books in the Young Adult SFF genre. I’m very excited for the rest of the series! High praise to Rebecca Ross for writing such a fresh, beautiful debut book!