22 Jan 2018

#ARCReview: THE VALIANT by Lesley Livingston


Author: Lesley Livingston
Series: The Valiant #1
Source: ARC via Publisher
Publisher: HarperCollins Canada
Publication Date: February 14, 2017
Rating: 2/5 stars

Princess. Captive. Gladiator.

Fallon is the daughter of a proud Celtic king, the sister of the legendary warrior Sorcha, and the sworn enemy of Julius Caesar.

When Fallon was a child, Caesar’s armies invaded her homeland, and her beloved sister was killed in battle.

Now, on the eve of her seventeenth birthday, Fallon is eager to follow in her sister’s footsteps and earn her place in the fearsome Cantii war band. She never gets the chance.

Fallon is captured and sold to an elite training school for female gladiators—owned by none other than Julius Caesar. In a cruel twist of fate, the man who destroyed Fallon’s family might be her only hope of survival.

Now Fallon must overcome vicious rivalries and deadly fights—in and out of the arena. And perhaps the most dangerous threat of all: her forbidden yet irresistible feelings for Cai, a young Roman soldier.
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book and chose to review it. This in no way impacts my opinion.

So this should have been everything I needed in a book and yet I closed it feeling really disappointed. Not only did it not have the level of violence that I needed for it to really be a book about gladiators, but it also ended so abruptly that I was looking at the final pages of my ARC with confusion. I was anticipating more since it is the beginning of a new series but it just left me feeling as though I should have never picked it back up after I put it down.

Which leads me to another point: this was so easy to put down and leave for MONTHS. Like I started reading it in February and finished it in December. Granted, I remembered all the plot because the first part I read was actually REALLY good and kept me interested, but then it fizzled off and so did my enthusiasm. But I wanted to clear off my "currently reading" books from 2017 so I thought I would finish it off and I almost wish I hadn't.

I did like Fallon to some extent but I thought she made some poor choices along the way. And because of these choices there were some plot holes that I couldn't get passed to really enjoy the story. I also am a huge history buff for the Roman era since I minored in it so I was disappointed with the way the history was interpreted and changed because it felt too forced. It didn't flow the way I like alternate history books to flow because it was just jarring. There wasn't enough of the actual history in it, if that makes sense.

This is one of those tricky books because I read half at the beginning of the year and half at the end but can tell you so many specifics because it is written well in terms of plot. But it left me wanting more and ultimately disappointed. I'm not sure if I will continue with the series but there is the possibility of doing so if I see very positive reviews from the next book.

1 comment:

  1. Very interesting review! I've been very interested in this one as well, especially because I have a huge passion for the Classics, so I'm bummed to see that the historical aspect wasn't done as well as it could have been. It's also a bit of a problem when it's so easy to put a book down like that--I know what that's like! I might still pick this up some time, but it probably won't be a huge priority. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!


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