on May 30, 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult
Being a bastard blows. Tilla would know. Her father, Lord Kent of the Western Province, loved her as a child, but cast her aside as soon as he had trueborn children.
At sixteen, Tilla spends her days exploring long-forgotten tunnels beneath the castle with her stablehand half brother, Jax, and her nights drinking with the servants, passing out on Jax’s floor while her castle bedroom collects dust. Tilla secretly longs to sit by her father’s side, resplendent in a sparkling gown, enjoying feasts with the rest of the family. Instead, she sits with the other bastards, like Miles of House Hampstedt, an awkward scholar who’s been in love with Tilla since they were children.
Then, at a feast honoring the visiting princess Lyriana, the royal shocks everyone by choosing to sit at the Bastards’ Table. Before she knows it, Tilla is leading the sheltered princess on a late-night escapade. Along with Jax, Miles, and fellow bastard Zell, a Zitochi warrior from the north, they stumble upon a crime they were never meant to witness.
Rebellion is brewing in the west, and a brutal coup leaves Lyriana’s uncle, the Royal Archmagus, dead—with Lyriana next on the list. The group flees for their lives, relentlessly pursued by murderous mercenaries; their own parents have put a price on their heads to prevent the king and his powerful Royal Mages from discovering their treachery.
The bastards band together, realizing they alone have the power to prevent a civil war that will tear their kingdom apart—if they can warn the king in time. And if they can survive the journey . . .
Hands down this is one of the best books I’ve read this year!
Do you like Game of Thrones? Royal Bastards often reminded me of it, because of the scheming, backstabbing, epic fight scenes, despicable people, and terrifying beasts. Royal Bastards is definitely not as effed up as Game of Thrones though. It’s tamer, lighter, funny, and of course YA.
I chuckled a lot! The constant humor in Royal Bastards was one of the best parts of the book. The writing is chill and casual, which really surprised me when I started the book, because most fantasy stories have dense, poetic-like descriptions and dialogue. The informal writing made reading this book easier and more fun.
Tilla is a gem! I loved her immediately. She was always making me smile and laugh with her hilarious inner and outer dialogue. Tilla’s a bastard, which means she’s had the short straw since the day she was born. She’s such a good, brave, and caring person, and it was so unfair how awful she and the other bastards were treated because of a ridiculous label.
There’s great supporting characters! Jax, like his sister Tilla, is also very funny and brave. His jokes helped raise everyone’s spirits during the awful times. Zell is attractive, brooding, and stoic, which meant I fell for him instantly. The princess Lyriana annoyed me in the beginning, because she was super bubbly and naive. Eventually she grew on me when she got smacked with a dose of harsh reality, and started to mature. The other characters were likable enough, I just didn’t like them as much as Tilla, Jax, Zell, and eventually Lyriana.
You need to read this book! It’s entertaining and never boring.