By: Melanie | August 21, 2013 | (16) Comments

Review: Kinslayer by Jay KristoffKinslayer by Jay Kristoff
Series: The Lotus War, #2
Publisher: Pan Macmillan Australia
Release Date: September 1, 2013
Genres: Fantasy, Steampunk, YA
Pages: 618
Source: Received in exchange for review
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A SHATTERED EMPIRE
The mad Shōgun Yoritomo has been assassinated by the Stormdancer Yukiko, and the threat of civil war looms over the Shima Imperium. The Lotus Guild conspires to renew the nation’s broken dynasty and crush the growing rebellion simultaneously – by endorsing a new Shōgun who desires nothing more than to see Yukiko dead.

A DARK LEGACY
Yukiko and the mighty thunder tiger Buruu have been cast in the role of heroes by the Kagé rebellion. But Yukiko herself is blinded by rage over her father’s death, and her ability to hear the thoughts of beasts is swelling beyond her power to control. Along with Buruu, Yukiko’s anchor is Kin, the rebel Guildsman who helped her escape from Yoritomo’s clutches. But Kin has his own secrets, and is haunted by visions of a future he’d rather die than see realized.

A GATHERING STORM
Kagé assassins lurk within the Shōgun’s palace, plotting to end the new dynasty before it begins. A waif from Kigen’s gutters begins a friendship that could undo the entire empire. A new enemy gathers its strength, readying to push the fracturing Shima imperium into a war it cannot hope to survive. And across raging oceans, amongst islands of black glass, Yukiko and Buruu will face foes no katana or talon can defeat. The ghosts of a blood-stained past.

The amount of twists Kinslayer occupies makes me wonder how I will progress through writing this review. This book twisted my guts. (I uPUNagise) This book twisted my brain till all it could do was react with fangirling squeals. It’s no lie that I wasn’t exactly expecting a wow-factor after finishing this read; Stormdancer was difficult in terms of long descriptions and awkward sentence structure and redundancy. Nonetheless, despite a few small flaws, Kinslayer has redeemed my love for this series and the steampunkin’ genre.

Yukiko has never been my favourite character. Not only because Buruu will foreverly hold that position but because she never clicked well to me. However, in Kinslayer I could really start to relate and connect to Yukiko. She’s a cooler version of Katniss Everdeen, undeniably kick-ass and unquestionably with heart and motives. My love for Yukiko as increased unmistakably. Sorry, I should quit the ‘un’ prefix. I am undoubtedly sorry. Furthermore, we have the never-ending friendship of Yukiko and Buruu. Their dialogue always lightens up the dark, war-brewing atmosphere effortlessly without it seeming coerced or clichéd. Buruu is utterly hilarious and completely essential here. It’s what brings Kinslayer together into on successful blob of a novel.

The world building kind of makes me drop my jaw in awe. Clearly, the long descriptions divulge a benefit for readers to fully comprehend and imagine the world Jay Kristoff constructed. The ancient (ish) Japanese setting also seems to create a better 3D effect which is categorically vital with the plot idea (which is also perfection). While my knowledge of the Japanese language is close to zero, (okay, I surrender. I mean none) there is clear evidence of research in the history of Japan and the language grammar, discourse particles et cetera. Feudalism and anarchies here we come!

Something that threw me into the middle of LOVE and WUT was the writing. At times, I found redundant sentences but the writing was absolutely beautiful and atmospheric. It’s story-teller like even. Still, Melanie approves of the writing on whole. Melanie is jealous of Jay Kristoff’s writing. Melanie plans to steal Jay Kristoff’s writing. *Snaps out of trance* The writing, I think, also worked out fabulously with the story lines. There are many story lines present in this novel and the way they all melded and clashed together in the end was certainly crafty. I still cannot stop thinking about it.

Unfortunately, Kinslayer still had flaws- even though they are absolutely miniscule. The pacing was rather slow and bored me in some excerpts but strangely was a fast read for a 600 paged novel. The awkward writing passages and extra unnecessary sentences also came to my attention.

All in all, Kinslayer was a pleasing read that butchered with my heart. From stopping it and making it beat millions of miles per hour. The Lotus War is a series that all readers should be keeping an eye on as this action, plot and characters are fantastically balanced. And of course, Buruu is an epic addition. 😀

~Thank you Pan Macmillan Australia for sending me this copy!~

4.5 Stars
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Melanie

Owner (and crazy nut) at YA Midnight Reads
Melanie is one of the totally fabulous bloggers at YA Midnight Reads. She's a 16 year old student from Melbourne, Australia. She is normally found binge watching TV series, reading , blogging, procrastinating or fangirling about how Percabeth is the best ship ever. She's also a lover of caps lock and uses it excessively.

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16 Responses to Review: Kinslayer by Jay Kristoff

  1. Amelia says:

    Yet another fabulous, review, Mel! I loved Stormdancer and I can just have this feeling that I’ll love this one even more. BURUU OMG. He’s hilarious 😀 I never really had an issue with the writing- even though I realised it could be a tad redundant.

  2. Ugh, I’ve been seeing raving reviews for this book left and right but I’ve been hesitant to try this one out due to the inaccuracies of the first one when it came to certain Japanese stuff and honorifics… I may consider it again thanks to your review, but I hope those inaccuracies were fixed this time :S Awesome review, Melanie! 🙂
    Faye @ The Social Potato recently posted…ARC Review: Relic (Books of Eva #1) by Heather TerrellMy Profile

  3. What a lovely review, Melanie! I don’t know that I would normally pick up this one, but such a solid review from you definitely makes it tempting! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  4. Jasprit says:

    Yay! I’m so happy that you enjoyed Kinslayer Melanie, Stormdancer at first did take me a while to get into, but I ended up really enjoying it, that I can’t wait to see how things will go down in this book. Brilliant review! 🙂
    Jasprit recently posted…Review: The Secret Year by Jennifer HubbardMy Profile

  5. I’m really happy you loved this one! I have Stormdancer sitting on my shelf and I should really start it soon. I love that it’s obvious how much research was put into the books, especially since I know next to nothing about Japan so learning a lot about it in a fun way would be such a productive method. The writing also sounds gorgeous, and I’m glad that your love for Yukiko grew, she does sound like a fantastic heroine.

    Fantastic review, Melanie! <33
    Eileen @ ***Singing and Reading in the Rain*** recently posted…Starry Nights by Daisy WhitneyMy Profile

  6. Ah, Mel, how I love your reviews to pieces. You made me cough (read: choke) while eating popcorn, coincidentally, my younger siblings are currently watching My Little Pony. They say it’s a good episode… 😉

    Ahem, anyways! It’s awesome that you found this sequel to be better than the first, I find that doesn’t happen too often. It’s seems that you really grew to like the MC, however UNlikely that may have been. 😉 Your love for Buruu also has me very interested… Also, YAY for good world-building! Despite the many dystopian novels I have read, very few actually show good world building. The writing also seems very nice, although a bit overdone, as it appears. Although the fact that you’re plotting to steal it definitely means something!

    AWESOME review, Mel! Seriously, kudos to you for making this such an enjoyable review to read. <33
    Aneeqah @ My Not So Real Life recently posted…Waiting on Wednesday (53)My Profile

  7. I still haven’t tackled the first book but it’s good to know that the second is great, because that gives me more incentive to get started on the series!
    Thanks so much for stopping by! Jen @ YA Romantics
    Jen @ YA Romantics recently posted…Waiting on Wednesday … The Summer of Letting Go and The Geography of You and MeMy Profile

  8. Candace says:

    Oh yes, I can’t wait to read this one! I loved Stormdancer and am anxious for more Buruu! I’m so excited to see your wonderful review!
    Candace recently posted…Young Adult Review & Giveaway: The Morning Star by Robin BridgesMy Profile

  9. Johanna Richards says:

    I wish I had a pet like Buruu. For me, he was the only good part of Stormdancer- I wasn’t awfully attatched to any other of the characters, unfortunately. Fabulous review, Melanie

  10. Celine says:

    Great review, Melanie 😀

    Good to see certain thing improved and YES, I love Buruu. Buruu is awesome!
    Celine recently posted…ARC Review: All Our Yesterdays by Christin TerrillMy Profile

  11. Rachel says:

    I don’t think this is my type of read but I know so many have enjoyed this series. Wonderful that it’s still a strong story into book two. Wonderful review, Melanie! 🙂
    Rachel recently posted…Review: Blood Bound (Mercy Thompson #2) by Patricia BriggsMy Profile

  12. Giselle says:

    Redundant sentences! Yes! haha. I actually only read maybe 40% of book 1 and gave up on it. I don’t like needing an encyclopedia and Google on hand when I read a book to be able to follow it. Plus I read it on a Kobo and it was impossible to flip to the index when needed. Anyways, it just wasn’t for me. I’m gad you enjoyed it though it does sounds like the world building is exceptional and the setting really gets brought to life. It’s obvious a lot of research was done to write this one.
    Giselle recently posted…Book Girls Don’t Cry: Least Favorite Part of BloggingMy Profile

  13. Stephanie B says:

    Awesome review, Mel! This one did look interesting and the cover has definitely caught my attention.
    Stephanie B recently posted…Review: The Ruins of GorlanMy Profile

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  15. Pili says:

    I loved Stormdancer and I’m quite excited to read Kinslayer! Your review made me want to read it even more now, so hopefully I’ll get to it soon! Though I’m wondering… if there’s a cliffhanger, maybe I should wait till book 3 comes out to read both back to back!
    Pili recently posted…Showcase Sunday #21!My Profile

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