Saturday, 2 May 2015

The Duchess Inheritance by C.K. Brooke

Following on from my last review, I'm back with the second and final instalment of the Jordinia Series by the very talented author C.K. Brooke

I'm going to be completely honest here, I may have received this book before it's release and I may have got so far through and stopped reading, simply because I didn't want the series to end. No matter how annoying the characters were, I was attached and didn't want their journey to end. And while I'm being honest, I may have at one point or two, cast down a plague of  fire ants upon the head of C.K. Brooke, it was totally deserved though!  

I finally put my big girl pants on and finished reading the book for the sake of this blog and my cat, who has now become known as Post It Cat.  Don't worry I rescued him from any more notes by making room on the laptop and piled the notes on top of the other notes, also just to point out, the notes in the pictures were from the first half of the book.

So confessions finished, it's time to begin this review. Oh just need to wait for Post It Cat to stop eating my notes. Right, let's begin! 

The Duchess Inheritance picks up pretty much straight after The Duchess Quest.  The familiar characters are back and as a reader it's important to remember that Dainy and Mac are half brother and sister and Mac and Jon are also half brothers, yeah I thought my fiancĂ©'s family tree was a bit messed up but it's nothing compared to that. 

It's great to see that none of the characters have changed during books, Jon is still all Quagmire like (giggity), Bos is still like a protective big brother (I LOVE BOS!!) and Mac is still Mac who seems to have gained an older brother and a younger sister who bang each other .... Poor Mac. 

There's no love loss between Jon and Mac, which I love, by the end of the book their relationship has developed to a point where they'd seek vengeance for each other, where as from the start of this book Mac is already being protective of Dainy and trying to stop her and Jon being together until they're married. He basically becomes as protective as Bos is. 

There are new characters in the book which you will either love, hate or write post it notes that say MONTY MUST DIE and KILL MONTY ..... this is the reason I cursed C.K. Brooke, because of Monty. There was just no need at all. Bad bad bad author! Yes I'm holding a grudge over that. Anyway, new characters a plenty, from Bet who I immediately pegged as Selu's mum, to Lady Eponina who had me longing for a connection to Les MisĂ©rables (if you haven't read that book, hang your head in shame!) and eventually a longing for Mac and Eponina to be together in a happily ever after life just like I wished for Marius and Eponine in Les Mis.  There's also a gay couple who I adore, they're like the gay news reporters out of American Dad (I may watch too much Family Guy and American Dad).

The book is split into 2 stories, first is the adventure to the foreign lands and discovery of the Inheritance left to Dainy in the form of well not money or jewels but a future, prosperity and growth. 

I felt surprised when I discovered that the adventure was over within the first 35% of the book. Perhaps it was the short chapters, but I felt I had been reading for ages and I hadn't. I'm not sure of this was a good or a bad thing, It could be seen as the book being dragged out but it certainly wasn't, the story flowed well, each section well written and still as captivating as before. But it could also be seen as a missed opportunity to turn a 2 book series into 3. 

I found that the first half of this book Mac seemed to be a bit player, I found myself scribbling notes like What is Mac doing? I Miss Mac and there was a few Mac for Emperor but more on that later. 

I've mentioned how characters were still the same from the previous book however there is a point where one character was acting so out of character that I wanted to slap them. Which is when Jon dealt with the character. 

Going through my notes, I realised that a lot of them were about the immaturity of Dainy and Jon. They both act like children and I am forced to remember that Dainy is still just a kid. Which is when I began to question her ability as an Empress, even with John at her side, could they truly rule a nation? No. Which is why I found myself rooting for Mac. 

Compared to Dainy and Jon, he is one hundred times more mature, sensible and brave. Everything an Emperor should be. Don't get me wrong, Jon has grown since the first book, he was a womaniser and a scoundrel and damn it he was Glen Quagmire. But he still has his immature moments. Although, Dainy really is worse.

The second part of the book focuses more on the plan to reclaim Jordinia for Dainy and it was by this point that I couldn't put the book down. This was where it truly began, the romance, the drama, the action, all of it took off from this point. I was that engrossed that it wasn't until I'd finished the book that I realised Post It Cat had shredded most of my new notes while the Ginger Ninja Cat had helped himself to my cup of tea (I went to take a sip only to be blocked by his head in my cup.) 

The more I read the more I began to feel like Brooke had pulled parts of Les Mis and the story of Anastasia Romanova into the world of Jordinia. Think about it and you will see it to. It's noticeable from the first book however I realised I was more focused on the actual quest and romance of the first book to truly pick up on the signs. But in this book they're so very very very clear. In fact I wouldn't have been surprised to see Mac burst into song at the end. 

If you enjoyed The Duchess Quest then you really need to buy The Duchess Inheritance, get the closure you need on the characters you love, become even more attached to some. C.K. Brooke opened your imagination with the Quest, now let her finish your adventure with Inheritance. You won't regret it.