Review of Rebel Spring by Morgan Rhodes

Rebel SpringRebel Spring (Falling Kingdoms #2)
By: Morgan Rhodes
Release Date: December 3rd 2013
Publisher: Razorbill
Barnes and Noble

My Rating:

Spoilers for Falling Kingdoms. You can read my review of the first in the series here.

Love, power, and magic collide with war in the second book of the Falling Kingdoms series

Auranos has fallen and the three kingdoms—Auranos, Limeros, and Paelsia—are now united as one country called Mytica. But still, magic beckons, and with it the chance to rule not just Mytica, but the world…

When the evil King Gaius announces that a road is to be built into the Forbidden Mountains, formally linking all of Mytica together, he sets off a chain of events that will forever change the face of this land, forcing Cleo the dethroned princess, Magnus the reluctant heir, Lucia the haunted sorceress, and Jonas the desperate rebel to take steps they never could have imagined.

The Story:
I am a big fan of high fantasy so this series is instantly likeable for me. I was drawn to Falling Kingdoms by the tag line ‘Game of Thrones for YA’. Since I’m a big GoT fan I figured this would be right up my alley. It did not disappoint. I felt that this sequel held up well and continued the story nicely as well as further delved into past characters while introducing a few new faces.

This series is told with multiple point of views with Rebel Spring adding even more than the first book. Some readers dislike multiple point of views because it makes connecting to the characters more difficult and sometimes can be confusing. I found that Rhodes handled her multiple POVs well and I never felt confused. Each character felt unique and seeing from all the different point of views helped to progress the story.

I found the pacing to be enjoyable with some parts, the action scenes, moving fast yet the character driven scenes were slower but never dull to me. My only qualm about this book was that it didn’t feel like it had a very tangible stand alone story arc and was largely just a continuation of Falling Kingdoms.

The Characters:
I really love to read high fantasy with a huge cast of characters because this allows for there to be more of an opportunity to surprise me with twist and turns and also characters to dispose of. In my fantasy I want there to be no one safe and for me to be shocked by who the author plans to destroy with their story line. Rhodes employs this strategy gracefully and effectively.

I will admit that I’ve not become overly invested or attached to any one character but I find them all to be intriguing and unique in their voice and experiences. I was very happy to see some chapters told from King Gaius’ point of view because I hoped to see something deeper in him than evil and the desire to rule. I was a tad let down because his point of view felt underutilized to me and I wasn’t given much more than what I already knew about him from other characters observations. I’m hoping that Rhodes will explore him further in the next installment.

Of all the characters Cleo was the easiest to relate to and she had the most growth. Her and Jonas are very much the fan favorites and I look forward to where their stories are taken.

Final Thoughts:
Overall Rebel Spring is a strong sequel that progresses the original story and characters while weaving in some new faces. I look forward to seeing where Rhodes takes and finishes this series.


  1. says

    I’m quite intrigued by this series and I feel like I really need to get it further up on my TBR list. Does this one end in a cliffhanger? I hope not, cause if it does I won’t be starting the series till book 3 comes out!
    Great review, Kristen!

    • says

      Thanks Pili! I honestly think this series would be best if you could read all of them one after the other so since you’ve not started I’d wait until the third releases that way you can really get invested in the characters and story. I really wish I’d had the time to reread Falling Kingdoms because I had trouble remembering some of the finer details.

  2. says

    Great review! I’m actually scared to get attached to any one characters in big fantasy novels like this. It never end well for most haha. I’m super excited to check this one out soon. Thanks for sharing (:

    Cyn @ Bookmunchies

  3. Vivien says

    Glad to hear you enjoyed it! The first book didn’t really do it for me, so I’ll probably pass on this. Always nice to hear positive reviews though!

    • says

      I imagine these books are for a specific group of readers. This sequel was very much in line with the first so probably best you skip it. Thanks for stopping by though!

    • says

      Thank you Melanie! I really enjoyed both books. I think they are best read one after the other. I hope you enjoy them and I can’t wait to hear your thoughts.

  4. says

    I’m like the only person I know who doesn’t just *love* this series. It’s good, but it just feels flat. I can see why it’s called the “Game of Thrones for YA” though, with all the loss of life. For about two seconds, I thought one character was gone, and I was ready to throw the book across the room and consider it DNFd. I guess that kind of reaction means I am enjoying it to some degree, but I’m just not connecting with the characters. What am I missing?

    • says

      I feel a level of disconnect from the characters too, to be honest. I can see how it can come across flat especially with all the POVs. I really love a sweeping political fantasy novel with many players and I don’t necessarily need to connect too deeply to them. Granted, I must be in a specific mood when I read. Typically after I’ve read a lot of mushy, love type books this type of fantasy proves to be a wonderful palette cleanser. Perhaps, you aren’t in the mood when you read? Did you enjoy GOT? I became very attached to Martin’s characters and flip-flopped between severe hate to love. I don’t feel that Rhodes has succeeded in this venture with these novels. But I do really enjoy the overall all arc and all the political intrigue and betrayal 🙂

    • says

      Thank you Jen! This one doesn’t match GoT’s grit that’s for sure but for YA I feel it goes pretty dark in areas. I’m eager to see how Rhodes finishes the series. Thanks for stopping by!

  5. says

    I wonder if you mean Jonas in the last line of the character section rather than Judas. Unless there was a character named Judas and it’s just my book amnesia striking again. It’s funny because while I like Cleo, I actually quite like Magnus too. Even though they’re kinda enemies, I almost ship them haha. But then I also ship Cleo x Jonas. And Jonas x Lysandra. GAH IT’S SO COMPLICATED!

    I like the pacing too! The slow bits might be boring for some but I think they were a nice lull in the action before BAM!

    • says

      Ah! Thanks Nara, that was a typo on my part. I have been suffering with the flu and have been rather loopy. So embarrassed! I’ve corrected it..and THANK YOU!

      Yes! I ship Magnus and Cleo too! I like almost villains so Magnus appeals to me a lot. It is so very complicated…but fun. I totally agree with the pacing. A nice lull before the big action is appreciated.

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