Ruined

Featured
 
4.0 (2)
 
4.7 (1)
1600 1
th7KT2ZS3L.jpg
Author(s)
Publisher
Age Range
12+
Release Date
May 03, 2016
ISBN
978-0062396600
Buy This Book
      

Amy Tintera’s new YA fantasy trilogy blends the romance of Kiera Cass’s Selection series and the epic stakes of Victoria Aveyard’s Red Queen in a story of revenge, adventure, and unexpected love. Emelina Flores has nothing. Her home in Ruina has been ravaged by war; her parents were killed and her sister was kidnapped. Even though Em is only a useless Ruined—completely lacking any magic—she is determined to get revenge. Her plan is simple: She will infiltrate the enemy’s kingdom, posing as the crown prince’s betrothed. She will lead an ambush. She will kill the king and everything he holds dear, including his son. The closer Em gets to the prince, though, the more she questions her mission. Her rage-filled heart begins to soften. But with her life—and her family—on the line, love could be Em’s deadliest mistake.

Editor reviews

2 reviews

Enjoyable Fantasy Read
(Updated: June 10, 2016)
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot 
 
2.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Ruined is an enjoyable, quick, fantasy read full of action, magic, and secrets. In it, we follow Emelina as she disguises herself as a dead daughter of a Lord, to infiltrate the royal family home in order to gather the information she needs to take back her kingdom and save her people from extinction and further execution.

I was definitely drawn in by the world and the premise of this book. I didn’t want to put it down, even when it became clear how predictable and simple the plot line was. I wanted to see if it got better, if we got twists and spirals of deceit and vengeance! We didn’t. Fortunately though, the ending is not one I predicted from the beginning, and that was a redeeming point for me. So in spite of some issues, I enjoyed reading Ruined.

The writing is rather simple. It’s strong and full of character, but it unfortunately lacks a unique voice. In the beginning there is potential for a dark, deadly tale of vengeance and retribution, and the writing hooks you. It’s engaging, especially since the story opens with Em and her two friends killing Mary and her guards. It was action packed, dark, and exhilarating. Unfortunatly, the rest of the story takes a much softer turn. If that's what you like, then this book is perfect for you!

Romance plays a huge part in this book. Once Em and the Prince meet, we follow their journey to romance, with only a few scenes including the danger and vengeance and darker plans until near the end. The romance is not instant, and it’s actually very adorable, but there’s not much connection or dimention. Cas, unfortunately, feels more like he’s there merely for romantic interest as he never spoke up until he met her, and by then he only ever repeated what she said. It didn’t seem like he thought for himself, making it hard to connect to him and the romance. He was the reason why Em lost sight of her determination and will. But he’s also the reason why she began to see things clearly, why she developed so well. It was enjoyable to read.

There were a lot of compelling discoveries and secrets that only made me want more and more, however. Especially once we met Olivia. Her character is what I expected out of Em, and it leaves immense potential for the next book to be as dark as I hoped this one would be.

Overall, Ruined is an intriguing fantasy read that, despite its flaws, had me turning pages quickly.
Good Points
Great character development
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Must read for the year
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Emelina Flores is out for vengeance and justice. Her people, the Ruined, have been ceaselessly slaughtered, and her sister, the one set to one day rule the Ruined, has been kidnapped. Though Emelina is considered a useless Ruined (not having any of the magic the others do), she will do whatever it takes to get her sister back and help her people. Her plan involves pretending to be Princess Mary, the future wife of the enemy kingdom’s prince. It is her job to set everything up for the ambush, but as she gets to know the prince, far different than what she imagined, she will find herself questioning her role and her mission.

Amy Tintera’s RUINED features of my all-time favorite protagonists, Em. I am always on the lookout for more protagonists who aren’t very nice, whose motives are steeped in moral ambiguity, and Em is exactly that. At the beginning of the novel, she is furious and bold, driven by grief, injustice, and a lot of anger. She is layered and fierce, and her pain is almost tangible. Her growth is simply stunning, especially as she learns to see kindness once again.

Between Em’s (and the Ruined’s) quest for revenge and the enemy kingdom’s horrifying ethics, there is a lethal edge to the story that will make readers clutch the book until their fingers cramp from anxiously trying to read as quickly as possible. While the story (thankfully) doesn’t go near any Game of Thrones level of death, it’s also not afraid to kill off characters with firm purpose, with more than one dealing a strong emotional blow. With the action and life-or-death scenarios, this is an excellent pick for anyone in a reading slump or for reluctant readers.

The slow burn romance begins a touch predictably, but instead of continuing to fall into a usual pattern, it takes some swift and rewarding turns. The moment of truth between Em and Cas, the crown prince, comes sooner than expected and doesn’t wait until book two to sort some things out. However, the twist-fueled ending will still leave a mountain of questions and an intense desire for the sequel.

RUINED is a must-read for the year. The dangerous circumstances, the battles between blood, love, and justice, and the gripping intensity will, in the best way, leave the reader as the title indicates: ruined.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

User reviews

1 reviews

Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
4.0  (1)
Characters 
 
5.0  (1)
Writing Style 
 
5.0  (1)
Already have an account? or Create an account
Absolutely addicting
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
As a huge fan of the Reboot/Rebel duology, I was really excited to see Amy Tintera had a new series starting. This one sounded like it would have a great heroine, minor characters that I would love, and a plot that would be addicting and packed with action. I was a little worried my expectations would be too high going in but I was quickly sucked into the story.

Em was a fierce and determined character that I really liked. She could be ruthless when needed but she cared about the people from Ruina, her people, and she was very protective of her friends and her sister. I could understand her guilt over her sister’s kidnapping even though it wasn’t her fault and her need to save her. I enjoyed her growth from being hard and closed off to learning to open up to new people. She was a character I wanted to see succeed. She worked so hard to compensate for not having any powers and it was something she had to come to accept about herself.

The character interactions were great and a lot of fun to read. The main interactions were between Em and Cas and I really enjoyed the way they went from hate when they knew nothing about each other to slowly getting to know each other, to respecting each other. I also liked the dynamic between Cas and his bodyguard, Gallo. They were more like brothers and best friends instead of prince and guard. The dynamic between Em and her friend and bodyguard Eren was equally great and both provided some lighter moments in between the action and the tension. The interactions between Em and Cas’ parents were so tension-filled that it was nerve-wracking to read.

I loved the world-building of Ruina, Lera, the Ruined power structure, the hunters who captured or killed the Ruined. It started off with action right away and with the deception stakes so high, there was never really a moment I felt like I could take a breath. There was a history of battles and distrust between the kingdoms that added to the story now and both the world-building and character growth were spread out through the book so it didn’t feel overwhelming or like an information dump. There was a lot of action, sword-fighting, close calls, twists. It was just a great reading experience. I can’t wait for the sequel.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

The Walrus and the Caribou
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
When the earth was new, words had the power to...
The Elephant's Umbrella
 
3.5
 
0.0 (0)
Elephant is always ready and willing to share her prized...
Calvin Gets the Last Word
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
The dictionary as narrator? YES! ...
Goblin King (Permafrost, #2)
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
In Kara Barbieri's Goblin King, the stunning sequel in the...
Hollowpox: The Hunt for Morrigan Crow (Nevermoor, #3)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Morrigan battles a new evil as a strange, frightening illness...
The Gilded Wolves (The Gilded Wolves, #1)
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
*AN INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER* From New York...
Earth-Shattering Events: Volcanoes, earthquakes, cyclones, tsunamis and other natural disasters
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
An atlas of the most extreme meteorological and geological disasters...
Among the Beasts and Briars
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Ashley Poston, acclaimed author of Heart of Iron, returns...
Gut Garden: A journey into the wonderful world of your microbiome
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
A journey into the wonderful world of your microbiome! Within...
ICK! Delightfully Disgusting Animal Dinners, Dwellings, and Defenses
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Animals--they're cute and fluffy, cuddly and puffy, and ... sometimes...
Dinosaurs Are Not Extinct: Real Facts About Real Dinosaurs
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Award-winning author-illustrator Drew Sheneman brings budding paleontologists the truth about...
The Camelot Betrayal
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The second book in a new fantasy trilogy from New...
Soulswift
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
A dark, epic fantasy about a girl who must rethink...
Goblin King
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
In Kara Barbieri's Goblin King, the stunning sequel in the...
Beautiful Wild
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
You are invited to set sail on the maiden voyage...
Kingdom of the Wicked
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
From the #1 New York Times and USA Today bestselling...

Latest Member Reviews

Goblin King (Permafrost, #2)
 
4.0
"GOBLIN KING is a much faster-paced and action-packed YA fantasy sequel. Janneke has taken the mantle of the stag, though..."
Swamp Thing: Twin Branches
 
4.3
"SWAMP THING: TWIN BRANCHES is a graphic novel about finding yourself, remembering history, and forging your own path forward. Alec..."
The Mirror: Broken Wish (The Mirror, #1)
 
5.0
"BROKEN WISH is a beautifully composed fairytale. The book begins with the story of Mathilda and Agnes, neighbors who have..."
The Gilded Wolves (The Gilded Wolves, #1)
 
5.0
"THE GILDED WOLVES is a fantastic YA fantasy. Although given a year in the 1800s and a historical setting, the..."
The Silvered Serpents (The Gilded Wolves, #2)
 
4.3
"That ending!!! THE SILVERED SERPENTS is an engaging YA historical fantasy that picks up after the first book ended, and..."
Among the Beasts and Briars
 
4.7
"Ashley Poston has crafted a new fairy tale for the ages! Among the Beasts and Briars may very well be..."
Warriors of Wing and Flame (Sisters of Shadow and Light, #2)
 
4.0
"WARRIORS OF WING AND FLAME is an intriguing conclusion to a YA fantasy duology about sisterhood. This book picks up..."
Sisters of Shadow and Light (Sisters of Shadow and Light, #1)
 
3.7
"SISTERS OF SHADOW AND LIGHT is an intriguing YA fantasy that focuses on the love between sisters. Zuhra has lived..."
Foreshadow: Stories to Celebrate the Magic of Reading and Writing YA
 
5.0
"FORESHADOW is a fantastic collection of short stories with a focus on discussion and writing. Each story is undeniably well-composed..."
A Cloud of Outrageous Blue
 
4.3
"A CLOUD OF OUTRAGEOUS BLUE is a historical fiction read that takes the reader to 1348-1349. Edyth grew up with..."
Slingshot
 
4.7
"SLINGSHOT by Mercedes Helnwein is a firecracker of a debut. This YA contemporary is set inside a shoddy boarding school..."
Raybearer (Raybearer, #1)
 
5.0
"RAYBEARER is a lush and imaginative YA fantasy that had me captivated from the start. The book follows Tarisai, who..."
A Golden Fury
 
4.0
"When I started A Golden Fury by Samantha Cohoe, I’m not sure what I was expecting. A historical fantasy? A..."
Beyond the Ruby Veil (The Walls in the Ruby Sky, #1)
 
4.3
"BEYOND THE RUBY VEIL is a very dark YA fantasy that features a ruthless anti-heroine and a mysterious other world...."
Lightbringer (Empirium, #3)
 
5.0
"LIGHTBRINGER is a truly epic finale to the Empirium trilogy. Rielle and Eliana are mother and daughter, separated by thousands..."
Dating Makes Perfect
 
4.3
" The story: Just like her sisters before her, Winnie isn’t allowed to date in high school. With..."
A Golden Fury
 
3.3
"A GOLDEN FURY is a YA historical fantasy that entrenches the reader in the life of Thea. Thea is a..."
Miss Meteor
 
5.0
"Meteor, New Mexico is the site where a meteor crashed years ago. It's also the site of the Miss Meteor..."
In the Study with the Wrench
 
3.0
"After the death of the headmaster and the storm in the first book, Blackbrook Academy is barely functioning. Half the..."
Five Total Strangers
 
5.0
"FIVE TOTAL STRANGERS is a thrilling ride that kept me guessing. Mira is on her way to her mother's house..."