Hello my precious muffins 🙂 I hope you’re doing great and enjoying everything February has to offer.
So here’s another swoony (kind of, maybe, who knows) story for all the romantic people out there 😊 (Or if you just like cupcakes and chocolate – you know, that works too!)
Four years ago Elliot refused to run away with her childhood sweetheart, the servant Kai, choosing duty to her family’s estate over love. Inspired by Jane Austen’s Persuasion comes a breathtaking romance about opening your mind to the future and your heart to the one person you know can break it.
I read this book in a single day. Well, 95% of it anyway. And let me tell you, I don’t usually do that to books. So I knew I had something special here.
But first things first. I never read Persuasion by Jane Austen (booo), I only watched the movie (boooo) and pretty much forgot all about it (triple booo). I’m not sorry, though, and the reason why is because I’ve heard fans of the book didn’t quite care for this adaptation. I’m not sure whether my ignorance for the original material influenced my enjoyment or not; all I know is that I adored this book.
I had no idea how a sci-fi adaptation of a classic would fare but honestly, it pretty much blew my mind. I’m not going to lie: the beginning is immensely confusing and I was a bit lost seeing all this weird terminology going around. I didn’t know where the story was taking place, either, which was a bit overwhelming. But after I got past that and things were explained properly, it was all good.
Now, I’m a big fan of angsty romances, where there’s some sort of miscommunication going on and/or a big obstacle keeping two characters from getting together. This book had both so I was a very happy reader. Actually, scratch that. I was destroyed. But in a good way! In my notes, one can find some variation of “ARGHHH MY HEART” about fourteen times so if that doesn’t show you how damaged this story made me, I don’t know what will.
However, don’t fool yourself into thinking this is a straight up romance. It actually had very little romance, which shocked and delighted me in equal amounts. I mean, the reason I chose this book for a Valentine’s read was, well, because I thought it was going to be all about the lurve. But it wasn’t. Most of the story actually revolved around a much bigger picture. (Cue in the angelic choir, please).
The amount of foreshadowing in this was amazing. I had no idea where the author was going to take the plot but after each piece was revealed, I could clearly see how it fit in with the rest of the puzzle. Like magic. Peterfreund managed to put together such a mysterious yet fascinating world I could not stop marveling at it. I expected it to be a simple love story and then it took me completely by surprise by just how complex and intricate it was.
There were all these characters whose lives were mixed in with the protagonist’s, and every single one of them mattered. There were so many interesting backstories and subplots going on, I had no time to breathe. Sudden revelations were thrown left and right and I was basically left to fend for myself. What is going on??? I screamed internally. And then wept sorrowfully and laughed with absolute joy at the same time.
I loved every single one of these characters and how they were all so maddening brilliant and frustrating and sweet and cruel and awful and adorable… There were all these nuances to them. All these conflicting notions that played a part in their fates. It was painful. I was a simple bystander and they were all doomed and I couldn’t do anything about it.
Elliot was a strong heroine in a very unconventional way. She felt she had a duty and did everything in her power to fulfill that duty. But she knew her limitations and was smart enough to choose her battles. She wasn’t mindlessly brave. She was capable, but she wasn’t all powerful. She wasn’t beautiful and she didn’t strive to be. She knew exactly who she was and was at peace with it. She was, very simply put, human. I identified so much with her rational personality, it was scary. Her dilemma was valid and gave a very solid motive as to why she did what she did (and consequentially, why there was a story to be told). Not like most books these days where the conflict is just too weak to really sustain itself.
I also liked the love interest, even if he was a bit too aggravating at times. I wanted to slap him and tell him to knock it off! Repeatedly. But this side of him was also believable and made for a very genuine character. He was also very cute. Ahem.
Now here’s the thing. I’m a fan of slow burn romances. And boy, was this one slow. As in, I went through the entire book expecting that moment to materialize and then… Well, I don’t know when exactly but at some point the tension rubber-band just snapped. My blood pressure suddenly went back to normal. And when it got to the end, even though it made my heart start racing again, it just didn’t give me the satisfaction I had hoped for.
Not to say I wasn’t satisfied. I was. But I wasn’t as much as I could have been. Instead, I was happy. I was genuinely happy. Still, there was something missing. I needed passion, intensity, just – more. I wanted to feel everything falling apart inside my ribcage. And realizing there’s no actual sequel to this where I could finally get all those feels… Just tears at my soul.
For that reason only:
Thank you so much for reading and until next time!