Friday 10 February 2017

Why I didn't like Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas | Book Review | Faith

This is most likely an unpopular opinion. Sarah J. Maas is worshipped by a lot of people in the YA book community, including myself. I do believe that she is a very strong writer and I have loved so many of the books that she has released. However, Empire of Storms was the first of her works where I felt very unsatisfied. Now, there are a number of topics that I will be discussing, and some of these might be controversial. So if you don't want to read about someone pointing out things about Sarah J. Maas's Empire of Storms, I suggest you click away and find another post to read.

One of the main things that I disliked about this book was the development of both the story and the characters. This was something that only just recently stood out to me as unrealistic. There was not really one book in this series where Celeana/Aelin didn't have some sort of romantic interest. You know---I was fine with the love triangle but after the first two books, it's just completely dismissed after it was made into this huge thing in the first two books. 

I did not view the romantic relationships in this book in a good way, I didn't view them as a way to advance plot points or even characters, to me it was simply there to merely entertain the reader with all of the "hot" stuff that was happening in the book. In my eyes it was a filler to make the book longer than it needed to be.

Some readers---okay a lot of readers enjoy book content like this. While I can tolerate it, it's only to a certain extent. And while some may rate books highly because of this, I don't because I base my ratings on more than just the events that occur. For me it's like half structure and half events. So you could probably imagine my disappointment when both of these things let me down when I read this book.

Another aspect of the book that I didn't really appreciate was the development of the characters. As mentioned before, I felt as if the development was very unrealistic and for me it became so bad that I started to not care for the characters. I lost interest with the characters and the storyline which is something that is quite unfortunate considering how much I love these books.

To me, and as a fan of Sarah J. Maas's works, I know what a good book from her looks like. And I'm not trying to say that this was the worst book in the entire world, it was just decent. Compared to her other works, this was the weakest one in my opinion. And I believe that this is due to her being on contract to write two books a year. So therefore, not as much effort goes into each of the novels she creates and writes.

Something else that surrounds this series in particular is diversity. And for some reason, I have always been very afraid to talk about it but I feel like this book is the perfect way to express my feelings.  In terms of reality, Empire of Storms is unrealistic. Yes, some of you may be saying that this book is a fantasy and that real life doesn't have to apply to these types of books. While that may be true, does it make it normal--- or even realistic to the world? Even if it's a fantasy, there are still things that should apply to the novel itself.

Every character is white---and if not all most of them are white. And not only this, everyone is straight. I am a person of colour and I have never seen myself in books, so if someone like me can't---what is someone else going through? And I can't really speak on behalf of the LTBQ+ community because I'm straight, but there are so many people out there who are and they are the ones who read  these books and feel that they are not represented.

This needs to change, not just with this book but just in YA in general.

And just because something needs to change, it does not mean we have to target authors and publishers in a negative manner. To be clear, just because someone doesn't write diverse books, it does not make them a racist.

With representation, it's so easy to include a person of colour or someone who isn't straight but does that mean it's a good representation of the character, the culture or their sexuality? No. We don't just need representation of diverse characters, we need GOOD representation that will let people see themselves in the characters they read about, that empower them and that make them feel proud to be who they are.

And it may seem like I'm rating this book based on the diversity aspect. While diversity is important to me, I don't rate them low solely based on that one aspect of that book.

So there were my thoughts on this book, I still will continue reading Sarah J. Maas's books---and hopefully I will continue to love them.

What were your thoughts on this book? TELL ME.

I hope you enjoyed reading this review!

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