While Kiera Cass is a Definite Ride or Die, The Betrothed Isn't | Review: The Betrothed by Kiera Cass

5:07 PM

Like so many readers, I run when I hear Kiera Cass has a new book. The Betrothed was, of course, no different. I ran towards it eagerly and swooned at the design. (Seriously, under the dust jacket? All kinds of gold related swooning.) For years, she's been an excellent source of purely romantic young adult escapism. Sadly... this book wasn't my cup of tea.

The Betrothed
by Kiera Cass

She's captured the king’s heart. But who’s captured hers? #1 New York Times bestselling author Kiera Cass is ready to retake her crown as the queen of YA romance with this sparkling new duology.

The young king of Coroa has never been the type to settle down—that is, until he meets Hollis Brite.

Hollis has grown up at the castle, among the other daughters of nobility who hoped beyond hope that they’d catch the king’s eye. So when King Jameson declares his love for her, Hollis is shocked—and thrilled.

But she soon realizes that along with the extravagant presents and fawning attention, this new life brings outsized expectations—expectations that make her wonder if she’s really cut out for life as a royal.

And when she meets an Isolten stranger with the mysterious power to see right into her heart, she starts to wonder: Is there more to life outside the palace walls?

The Betrothed by Kiera Cass
Rating: ★☆ (1.5)

Okay, okay, before you all come at me for rating The Siren lower, but still falling for The Betrothed hype, hear me out. I loved The Selection series. Like, even the lesser loved novels. (Ahem, The Heir and The Crown.) I previously cut Kiera Cass' writing some slack in The Siren due to it having been an older novel that she simply reworked. Tie that into my aforementioned love of The Selection and it's easy to see why I was stoked to get my hands on a copy of this beauty.

(And fans of Cass, before you all come at me: I still adore Kiera Cass.)

My complaints about The Betrothed are not necessarily heavy ones. They aren't attached to the fact that Kiera Cass writes similar, royal based romances. My disconnect to this story starts, and begins, with the fact that I've likely outgrown this type of story beyond my nostalgic attachment to similar stories of the last few years. And that's where it ends: I couldn't connect with The Betrothed.

Upon picking up the novel, my thoughts went from excitement and hyped up nostalgia, to lukewarm and underwhelmed. The Betrothed had promise. It started off slow, but still fun. Kiera Cass' writing is still as eager and easy to slip into as always, but in the case of The Betrothed I consistently felt like I could wander away from the story and forget everything in seconds.

Essentially, The Betrothed was nothing like it was pitched or what I'd come to expect from Cass. The characters held no captivating trait for my personal preference; the love interests weren't altogether appealing for me, the world-building was minimal at best, and in the end The Betrothed felt more like background noise than an actual novel in its own right.

Ultimately, this book wasn't for me. While I was still able to finish it (Kiera Cass has an addictive quality to her writing), The Betrothed certainly fell flat in so many ways and was simply not my cup of tea. I wanted to love this world, like I'd grown to love The Selection, but there was very little for me to be smitten about when it came to this story.

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