Review Detail

Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0

Short, Contemporary LGBTQ

This review can also be found at http://fortheloveofbooksreviews.blogspot.ca/2016/09/empress-of-world-by-sara-ryan.html


Nicola is taking a summer course in archaeology at the Siegel Institute, because she wants to make sure that archaeology is really a field she wants to go into. She expects that confirming her dream of becoming an archaeologist will be the focus of this summer, until she meets Battle.

Battle is beautiful, a minister's daughter, and soon captures Nicola's heart. While helping her new friends deal with their own issues, Nicola has to come to terms with her sexuality, and face her attraction to another girl.

I thought that this was a nice twist on the YA summer romance trend. It has a lot of the same elements as others in this branch of YA, including spending time at another location, in this case an academic camp or institute, it includes making new friends and helping them deal with their struggles, and of course experiencing attraction to a beautiful peer. The twist is that two girls are the love interests, which is a welcome change.

Nicola is a great main character, I find her very relatable and believable because I feel like a lot of her struggles mirror those that teenagers face in real life, and therefore making a connection with her was very easy. Understanding a character's feelings and where they're coming from with their thoughts is important to me because it makes for a more emotional or a deeper read.

Nicola is the kind of character you'd like to be friends with, the kind of person you'd be able to have a chat with and enjoy being around. Battle seems a bit more intimidating or untouchable, with Nicola's descriptions of her beauty and family issues, but she's still a generally likeable character as well. The rest of Nicola's group of friends, Isaac, Kevin and Katrina, make the whole situation seem more plausible as well with their own issues, for example dealing with divorce. They were a great group of characters to read about and I like that over time they changed or evolved, even if only a little bit.

The author's approach to sexuality was well done, with Nicola's struggles and internal dialogue being extremely believable and realistic, and avoiding some of the stereotypical LGBTQ tropes I've come across in other books. The word bisexual was even used, and in a fairly positive way as well, which really impressed me because I feel like multisexual identities are so rarely discussed in an outright manner. The addition of homophobic characters was necessary, in my opinion, to mirror real-life issues that LGBTQ people face and the author delivered on this platform as well. Overall, I am very impressed with this book.

I do take issue with the length of the novel! The author did such a great job, but the book was so short. I wish it had been longer, and that maybe certain issues could have been expanded upon, such as Battle's family life. I'm going to be looking for the sequel and I really hope that it lives up to Empress of the World.

I recommend this book to people looking for realistic portrayals of LGBTQ struggles in YA novels. If you want a short contemporary romance, this book is for you.

Good Points
Stays away from typical LGBTQ tropes in fiction
Realistic
Was this review helpful to you? 

Comments

 
 
Ordering 
 
Already have an account? or Create an account
 
 
 
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

#1 Bestseller on Kobo and Category Bestseller on Amazon! ...
 
0.0
 
4.8 (1)
What if you were the missing piece in one of...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Babysitter's Club: Kristy's Big Day
Kristy's mom is getting married, and Kristy is going to...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Very Last Castle
A curious little girl watches the man who guards the...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Jack B. Ninja
Jack B. Ninja! Jack, be quick! Jack, jump over the...
 
3.5
 
0.0 (0)
Emerge: The Assignment: An Immortals of Indriell Novella
She has devoted her life to training with the...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Agony House
Denise Farber has just moved back to New Orleans...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Freak N Gorgeous
Everyone is ugly sometimes. In a world not unlike...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Twice Dead
Naya, the daughter of a sea merchant captain, nervously...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Legacy of Light (Legends of the Tri-Gard Book 2)
Death. Sacrifice. Betrayal. That is your curse. The seer's...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Forest Queen
When sixteen-year-old Sylvie’s brother takes over management of their family’s...
 
3.3
 
0.0 (0)
Kendall's Snow Fort (Scholastic Reader Level 2: American Girl: Wellie Wishers)
There's a storm coming! The other WellieWishers promise to help...
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
Afterimage
A horrific explosion levels part of the city and...
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Death in daylight. Danger at dark. ...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Little Girl Who Wanted to be Big
The internet’s “World’s Best Father," award-winning photographer Dave Engledow, follows...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)

Latest Member Reviews

 
4.8
"I read some lines over and over because I really liked the writing style."
Dragonfly Nightmare
 
3.5
"I kind of got to know the main characters but they weren't totally real to me. Allie is the only..."
After the Green Withered
 
4.5
"A must read! "
We Regret To Inform You
 
4.3
"Mischa is the perfect high school student. She has joined all the right clubs, she has the best grades, and..."
The Babysitter's Club: Kristy's Big Day
 
4.0
"'The Baby-Sitter's Club: Kristy's Big Day' by Gale Galligan, based on the novel by Ann M. Martin, is an interesting..."
The Very Last Castle
 
5.0
"'The Very Last Castle' by Travis Jonker, pictures by Mark Pett, has a Willy Wonka feel to it. The book..."
Jack B. Ninja
 
3.5
"'Jack B. Ninja' by Tim McCanna, illustrated by Stephen Savage, is a rhyming story about Jack, a young ninja who..."
The Darkest Minds
 
4.0
""The Darkest Minds" is a YA dystopian that felt very similar to others out there- but the twist being a..."
Never Fade (The Darkest Minds #2)
 
3.0
""Never Fade" continues the Darkest Minds series with what felt a bit like an intermediate book. Beginning after the end..."
The Darkest Legacy
 
4.0
""The Darkest Legacy" continues The Darkest Minds series after the resolutions of the trilogy. This time, we follow Suzume (Zu)...."
Exo
Exo
 
5.0
""Exo" is a really interesting YA sci-fi that follows a 17-year-old human a hundred years after Earth has been taken..."
Cross Fire
 
5.0
""Cross Fire" was a great sequel to Exo that wraps up all the major plotlines and possibilities. The zhree, an..."
Everything, Everything
 
3.0
""Everything, Everything" follows Madeline, who lives in a bubble- she has a rare disease called SCID, which means she is..."
Eleanor & Park
 
4.0
""Eleanor & Park" was an unexpected touching read for me. Eleanor is a chubby red-head and Park is a half-Asian..."
Warcross
 
5.0
""Warcross" begins a fantastic new YA series from Marie Lu. Fans of the Legend trilogy will rejoice in this new,..."
Freak N Gorgeous
 
4.0
"'Freak N Gorgeous' by Sebastian J. Plata provides an in-depth and telling look into the world of two teenagers who..."
The Forest Queen
 
3.3
"THE FOREST QUEEN by Betsy Cornwell caught my eye at first glance. The cover is beautiful and promises a tale..."
My Wish For You A Message for Every Girl and Girl at Heart: Lessons from My Six-Year-Old Daughter
 
4.0
"My wish for you is the quintessential girl power read. Although it seems to focus on empowering young girls..."
Kendall's Snow Fort (Scholastic Reader Level 2: American Girl: Wellie Wishers)
 
3.0
"Kendall’s snow fort is a feel-good lesson learning wintery mix of fun. Essential for slightly more advanced readers, Kendall’s..."
The Little Girl Who Wanted to be Big
 
5.0
"Dave Engledow does it again with THE LITTLE GIRL WHO WANTED TO BE BIG. All the little girl wants to..."