On Monday I had the pleasure of interviewing a character from Kendra Ardnek’s new book, Water Princess, Fire Prince, and today I am reviewing it! I was sort of a beta reader for the book, admittedly not a good one, since I only read the first two parts. School and stuff kind of got in the way of the rest of it, so I volunteered to review the final product. I’m supposed to do a group review with my younger siblings, but only one of them got a chance to read it, and she’s almost done (school and volleyball and restricted computer time continued to get in the way)! I got her to write down some of her thoughts anyway.
So, the book!
Despite the fact that she’s on track for competing in the Olympics, and he’s practically raised his younger brothers since they lost their mom in a car accident, Clara Mandras and Andrew Stevenson are pretty much normal teens. They have normal hopes, normal dreams, and they live in a normal world.
All this is torn away from them when they are thrust into another world and declared Water Princess and Fire Prince. With no experience ruling a country, meeting each other for the first time, and being expected to fight the Lady Dragon – an evil sorceress plaguing the world of Rizkaland – Clara and Andrew are underprepared and inexperienced. Unless they learn to work together despite their standing opposition, Rizkaland’s hope will be lost.
What is to come will change their lives forever.
Claire: Rating 4/5
Portal fantasy is always exciting. You get to experience a new world through the eyes of someone from (usually) our world instead of an inhabitant of said world. This lets both the reader’s and the author’s imaginations go wild. The world of Rizkaland is no exception. We start off with two teens who get transported from our world into a different realm where they’re expected to defeat a dragon and take their place as the new king and queen. And get married. No pressure.
Overall, it was a really great story. I know other readers have had issues with Clara and I lump myself into that category. She was pretty irritating for the first section, but she steadily improved especially when the second half of the book hit. I did at times want to shake Andrew in an attempt to bring him to his senses, but his reactions were more understandable than Clara’s. (Although who wouldn’t want to go explore a new land and learn how to use a sword and bow? Granted the whole prophecy thing and being separated from your family is less than optimal.)
The second half of the book was really good. I enjoyed the story a whole lot more once Andrew and Clara finally met and started on the official “quest”. The romance was pretty cute. I did like how that developed. The ending was a little rushed and abrupt to me, but everything gets resolved so it’s not a big deal. I just wanted more of what happened after…well, spoilers…
The world building was awesome. A cylindrical world and water of varied colors that each have a different purpose? Pretty cool! If nothing else, just read the book to learn about this crazy new world that Ms. Ardnek invented. I know I wouldn’t mind going for a visit. The plot had plenty of little twists that kept it fresh. The ending sort of introduces you to the next book in the series, and it’s enough to keep me interested in this new world of Rizkaland!
Recommended to anyone who like fantasy, adventure, romance, and stories about finding one’s true path.
Monica: (From what she’s told me she’s pretty much at the end.)
It is pretty good so far. I really liked how she changed the natural surroundings to make the world different from our world. My favorite character was Andrew because he was more levelheaded.
I’m not that into romancy parts, but she (the author) seemed to have handled it pretty well. All in all, it was a good book.
(Yes, my house is populated by hoydens. You can’t write a kiss without them screaming “It’s soo mushy”!!) 😛
About the Author:
Kendra E. Ardnek loves fairy tales and twisting them in new and exciting ways. She’s been practicing her skills on her dozen plus cousins and siblings for years, “Finish your story, Kendra”, is frequently heard at family gatherings. Her sole life goal has always been to grow up and be an author of fantasy and children’s tales that also glorify God and his Word. You can read more about her on her blog,knittedbygodsplan.blogspot.com
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