Hello, everyone. Welcome to my review of A Noble’s Path by I.L. Cruz, my contribution to the blog tour. I hope you’re having fun so far and that my review turns out to be useful.
Let’s start with what this book is about. And to do that, I’ll insert the book blurb right…here.
About A Noble’s Path
Divided loyalties test Inez Garza.
The infamous incident at the Academy of Natural Studies has forced her to work for the King’s Men while continuing to serve the hidden market.
Supporting Birthright furthers the cause of Magical Return, but the cost may be the fall of the royal house and losing Zavier forever.
And the strongest pull of all is her growing and erratic magic, which demands everything and offers only destruction in return.
Inez must decide where her loyalties lie—saving Canto or saving herself.
First off, I need to state that I was given a free copy of this book for review purposes. However, my thoughts are my own.
This second book in the series moves along faster than the first book. And I enjoyed seeing the fallout from the “incident” that ended a lot of the mysteries in A Smuggler’s Path.
Inez managed to hold my interest and frustrate me all at once. She struck me as childish in thinking no one else needs to be hurt, but refusing to see just how many people she’s not only already hurting, but will hurt in the future. Her final choice in the end made me want to bang my head against a wall, though I understood her reasons for choosing it.
Talking of which…Zavier. I loved him in this book! True to the end, he is a lot braver than Inez, taking risks that made Inez’s indirect methods look pathetic in comparison. Zavier is the biggest reason to read this book, in my opinion. He’s thoughtful, honest, courageous, and willing to follow his heart, even if it means Mythos (the kingdom that makes sure the others don’t have any true magical power) may come in and replace the whole royal family. Stupidly wonderful and wonderfully stupid but somehow I loved every second I spent reading his involvement in the story, probably because he’s so incredibly lovestruck.
Toman and Meiri play a bigger part in this story, and it improves every event as a result. I especially loved Toman’s obsession with Inez’s love life. It smoothed over what could have been a book-throwing bit of irritation on my part during one particular event.
Oh, and there’s developments in the Jacque/Meiri pairing, developments I adored! I love how Meiri starts coming into her own in this book, and I love how completely Jacque loves her, to the point where he’s thinking more of her future than his own.
Arch is a new character. Even though he’s a bit too smooth, I liked the glimmers of depth he got and hope he shows up more in book three.
I loved the sheep! In fact, I really like how Cruz writes magical animals, making their natures blend seamlessly with their sentience. Rowley makes more of an appearance as well, and we get to learn a little more about Birthright, the resistance movement he leads.
We also get to see some depth in the characters that make up the King’s Men, which I deeply appreciated. Cleph’s situation was especially moving.
Though there were still moments of confusion (an issue I had with the first book), they were less and the book reads fast. The one sticking point I had trouble swallowing in the previous book is at least questioned in this one.
I did not appreciate one particular loose end that was brought up in the next-to-last scene and then ignored in the final scene. If that last scene hadn’t been there, I could have forgiven the loose thread as a cliffhanger. But with that final scene—which does, I admit, bring the plot full-circle both event- and image-wise with a hint at the difficulties to come—I ended up wondering if Inez had already learned the truth or if she was still waiting.
Still, it was an enjoyable read. Well worth the time. I look forward to book three!
About the Author
I.L. Cruz decided to make writing her full-time career during the economic downturn in 2008. Since then she’s used her BA in International Relations to sow political intrigue in her fantasy worlds and her MA in history to strive for the perfect prologue. When she’s not engaged in this mad profession she indulges her wanderlust as often as possible, watches too much sci-fi and reads until her eyes cross. She lives in Maryland with her husband, daughter and a sun-seeking supermutt named Dipper.
Her Twitter: @ILCruzWrites
Her blog: Fairytale Feminista at https://fairytalefeminista.wordpress.com
Her website: www.booksbyilcruz.com
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