Monday, March 9, 2015

Burning Kingdoms ~ Lauren DeStefano (earc) review [@LaurenDeStefano @simonteen]

Burning Kingdoms (The Internment Chronicles #2)
Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
March 10, 2015
320 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from TBD/or Amazon

** likely contains spoilers for Perfect Ruin - see my review here **

Danger descends in the second book of The Internment Chronicles, from the New York Times bestselling author of The Chemical Garden trilogy.

After escaping Internment, Morgan and her fellow fugitives land on the ground to finally learn about the world beneath their floating island home.

The ground is a strange place where water falls from the sky as snow, and people watch moving pictures and visit speakeasies. A place where families can have as many children as they want, their dead are buried in vast gardens of bodies, and Internment is the feature of an amusement park.

It is also a land at war.

Everyone who fled Internment had their own reasons to escape their corrupt haven, but now they’re caught under the watchful eye of another king who wants to dominate his world. They may have made it to the ground, but have they dragged Internment with them?

After the ending of Perfect Ruin I couldn't wait to see what happened in the next book, Burning Kingdoms.  I did not read Burning Kingdoms' description, os it's no surprise that it was not quite what i was expecting. (I like that I didn't read the summary, it let me discover the world or the ground as I read.)

While the end of Perfect Ruin had me thinking that the world Morgan had landed on, on the ground, was similar to - if not the same as - our modern world. I liked that I was wrong.

It's a world similar to our own, but also similar to the 1920s, in many ways.

It wasn't everything I was expecting, but even better, it wasn't everything those from Internment were expecting. Some parts of life on the ground are better than they expected - it's open and expansive, there's not a limit on children, it snows - but some are even worse - war and its deaths.

I liked that we got a fuller picture of the characters introduced on Internment and met some great new characters, as well. Characters who are, to say the least, not the best of friends are in a whole new world and that strengthens their bond. Whether they want it to or not. The development of everyone's relationships - from Morgan and her brother and her friends to even Morgan and the princess - see great development in Burning Kingdoms.

As the crew from Internment adapts to life on the ground and all that it entails, readers gradually get to learn more about this new world.

That life on the ground is so similar to a life or world readers know makes the differences even more surprising and enjoyable. Internment was 'other' from its incarnation, but here we get a world more recognizable but still different.

I did wish more had happened in Burning Kingdoms, even as, looking back at it, quite a lot did happen. It was less epic than Perfect Ruin, so it did feel a bit less fantastical and grand. I know that I am going to pick up the third book as soon as I am able, though. Even as I may have wanted just a bit more from the novel, I cannot deny that I enjoyed it, quite a lot. With the new characters, the relationships formed and solidified in Burning Kingdoms and now knowing about Internment, the ground and its warring kingdoms and the relationship between Earth and the island, I can't wait to see where the author takes the story.

digital galley received from the publisher, via Edelweiss, for review

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