Hello people! I have so many reviews to share with you all (and okay, I have still to write them, but this is just a minor detail!!) and I’ll try my best to make June a month full of them. And I have so many books I want to share with you all, so let’s start with this one. It is for a book that should be published this Summer, and it would be a perfect fit for this season, so let’s get going!
Thanks to the Editor. I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Author: Brielle D. Porter
Expected Publication Date: August 9th, 2022
What happens in Oasis, stays in Oasis.
Lisette’s father killed the King. His execution leaves Lisette alone, disgraced, and without the magic he intended to pass on to her. In Oasis, that’s a problem. Glutted with enchanted performers, Oasis is a sin city where courtiers pay in gold to drink, gamble, and above all, be entertained. To survive on its competitive streets, Lisette peddles paltry illusions in place of magic.
Desperate to prove herself, Lisette enters into a deadly competition to be chosen as the highest-ranked magician in the world, the Queen’s Jester. But her rival, the irritatingly handsome Luc, possesses the one thing Lisette does not—real magic. Lisette will do anything to win, but when evidence implicating the Queen in her husband’s murder surfaces, Lisette must choose between redeeming her family name, or seizing the fame she’s hungered for her entire life.
Before starting with the review I would like to direct your attention to the cover for a second because the artist did an amazing job with it! And sure, you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover but well, a good cover is always a welcome plus! And this one is so beautiful!
And now let’s begin! This book was not at all what I was expecting. It was way darker than what I was expecting, and while it is usually not a bad thing in this case it wasn’t a good surprise. I think that there is much to like about this book, I am not saying that it is bad or that there are things that didn’t work, nope, but as much as personal taste goes, this one was not of my liking. And the main reason for it is that this is a story of an obsession, and the MC is an amazing anti-hero without redeeming qualities. So this is an amazingly well-done book because the author does an amazing job with the characters and the story, but obsessions are not really my thing, and I like my anti-heroes with some redeeming qualities somewhere. Probably it would be more accurate to say that I like morally grey characters, and it is not really the case there. Mind me, the MC, Lisette, is not a villain, but she is consumed by her obsession. Her need to be approved, to be accepted, and welcomed by the ones that have magic and power, and her need to be seen, to demonstrate that she is the best, is the thing that drives her, and that drives the plot too. There is nothing that would stop her, and she would do anything and pay whichever price to achieve her goals.
And she is not the only one consumed by obsession. Luc, the other almost main character in there, and her main antagonist is moved by the same ambitions. And he is even scarier than Lisette for the depths that he would touch to achieve his ending goal. They both are pretty scary. They are intriguing, and they are complex characters, yes, but mostly they are scary.
We have an interesting cast of characters, aside from Lisette and Luc, but they all are unlikeable ones. And the strange thing is that usually, I am not the biggest fan of unlikeable characters. One is okay, two can be okay but it is not sure, but all of them? Not really my thing. And here we have only one character that I truly liked, Cillian. He is a secondary character who I thought was intriguing and not bad at all. But he was the only one. And yet, I was intrigued by the story, and this is really something since I am so character-driven, as a reader!
At least I can say that the characters here are quite unique, that’s for sure! And another peculiar thing is the world-building. It is not the most accurate, we didn’t get really much to go by, but we get enough and the city in which the story takes place is really well portrayed. And it is interesting and fascinating because Oasis is a sort of Las Vegas, but with some magic in it. And from time to time, the city became almost a secondary character in the story. And this I appreciated quite a lot!
And let’s not forget about the plot. The beginning is a tad slow-going, but the story picks up its pace and it kept you intrigued and interested. We have some interesting twists and I just had to keep going because the curiosity was killing me. We have magic, actions, and some breath-taking moments here and there, especially thanks to Luc and Lisette’s performances, they may be scary in their obsessions, but they know what they are doing! And we have also a mystery. And the ending was just perfect for the book. And it was, in some ways, surprising but so satisfying!
This is a highly original book, and if you are not scared by unpleasant characters, then I really think you should give this one a try!
And what about you? Have you read this book? Or are you interested in it?? Let me know!