This book had my expectations super high. I am such a big fan of the selection series and Kiera Cass’s writing so I had high hopes for this book as soon as the release date of May 5th was announced. I have to tell you, it unfortunately did not live up to my expectations.
The Betrothed takes place in the kingdom of Coroa and follows Hollis Brite, a woman who has taken the favor of the king and is soon to be married. But what will Hollis do when she realizes her true feelings are not for the crown but for someone she had never expected.
I honestly don’t even know where to begin. Like I said earlier, the writing was incredibly inconsistent when it came to the pace of the book, and overall the setting didn’t add much either. The plot was a basic love story, boy and girl meet, boy and girl fall in love. I’m not going to say I was surprised about that. It was obvious from the beginning how the story was going to go, but around the end of the book the plot became really shocking and I have to tell you, I was not expecting it at all. It was probably the saddest part of the story, but it was also one of my favorite parts. I honestly needed the surprise to be there, otherwise, it would just be another boring romance surrounding royalty.
I think the characters were okay. Just okay. I wouldn’t say their development was amazing, or even great. They were just okay.
I did enjoy the main character, Hollis Brite. She was lovable from the beginning with her eccentric personality and warm heart, however, her character basically stayed the same and I don’t think I really learned too much about her. I was expecting to have a protagonist that would sweep me off my feet with her actions and how her backstory affects her world now, but even her past was weakly written and I needed a lot more from her character.
Her love interests were just as weak. King Jameson had barely any conversations with her, but we did learn that he really was in love with Hollis. Other than that, he was pretty much a flat character. His only role was to give Hollis an opposing decision when it comes to who she supposedly truly loved.
Her second love interest was basically just the same. We did learn a little more of his backstory and his family, but he overall had about five conversations with Hollis and somehow she based her decision to love him on that.
As well as these flat characters, I have to admit I was intrigued by a few of them. Delia Grace seemed like such an interesting character and I wish I had more information about her backstory and how she was able to deal with all of the problems that life threw her way. With Delia Graces’ original problem of being practically bullied at court, her other issue of wanting the King was so interesting and added so much to the book. I really think that the plotline of Delia Grace’s love for King Jameson added to my love for her character, especially because she was willing to give it all up for her best friend.
There was also the character of Valentina that I found so interesting through her long story of marriage to the King of Isolte. Valentina added a lot to the plotline and actually gave us some information about her kingdom which surprisingly was pretty much all we knew.
The book took place in Coroa but it could honestly have taken place in any random kingdom. Other than knowing there was a castle, I learned nothing about Coroa, and barely anything about Isolte. The character Valentina and of course the Eastoffe family told us little about the country they were from and left us wondering what exactly caused them to hate it.
Pretty much the entire book could have taken place in any odd castle and any odd kingdom, which was pretty disappointing especially because I figured we’d learn more about the setting and how it actually affected the characters and the way they behaved.
The writing was another downfall of the book. Kiera’s best-selling hit series The Selection was so well written which got my hopes up for this book too. I was definitely let down with the writing.
The beginning of the book started off really slow but by the halfway point it picked up and was moving way too fast. The writing barely gave me a break between the events happening and it was hard to follow along at such a fast pace. Many points of the book had me feeling sad or happy but I barely had the chance to experience it before we picked up and moved onto the next part.
I am going to buy the second book just because I want to see how the whole situation goes down and ends. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend reading The Betrothed unless you’re a fan of basic romances and just want to pass time with a quick easy read.
Rating: 3/5 ⭐