Eden Conquered. Joelle Charbonneau. Young Adult/Fantasy. 2018. 320 pages. 2 stars.
Deep inside, she feared that without her twin she was nothing.
She refused to be nothing.
The Trials of Virtuous Succession have ended. Prince Andreus is king—and Princess Carys is dead.
But even as he’s haunted by what he did to win the throne, Andreus discovers that his dream of ruling only brings new problems. The people love his twin even more in death than they did when she was alive. The Elders treat him as a figurehead. And worst of all, the winds of Eden are faltering.
But despite what everyone believes, Carys is alive. Exiled to the wilderness, Carys struggles to control the powers that have broken free inside her. And as she grows stronger, so does her conviction that she must return to the Palace of Winds, face her twin and root out the treachery that began long before the first Trials started.
The Kingdom of Eden is growing darker with each passing day. Brother and sister, former foes, must decide whether some betrayals cut too deep to be forgiven—and whether one will wear the crown or both will lose everything.
What blood did you spill to gain the crown you wear?
Honestly, I’m mad at myself for not seeing this coming. Dividing Eden, despite my positive review, has received a lot of negative reviews due to the “poor execution of what could have been a great plot.” I was surprised when I read that because I enjoyed the book even if the plot was a bit slow (I pinned it on the intense world building and character set ups). However, its sequel couldn’t keep me enough to finish it.
Eden Conquered picks up where Dividing Eden left off. We have these characters trying to make the best out of their situations, whether it’s the throne or the snow. I was made aware of the awkward writing style because I really didn’t connect with the characters this time. I vaguely remember what happened in the first book, but couldn’t get a grasp of how that One Person Who Didn’t Matter At All was able to drive a wedge between literal twins who were connected heart and soul. It made sense then, but it didn’t make sense now. Talk about disillusionment!
Another problem for me was the boring and scattered plot. I was around at the halfway point when I realized that almost nothing happened ever since I started. We had Carys and Andreus, still lost with little progress. They both had trust issues (no improvement), they were surrounded by people who’ll most likely betray them (still the same people from the very beginning of the book, might I add), and generally just a lost sense of direction both physically and mentally.
I was thinking about pushing myself to finish the book to see what happens when I realized that I didn’t really care anymore what happened. Somewhere between the confusing Garrett-and-Errik situation and Andreus’ realization about Imogen lost me because it was all the book talked about when there were more urgent matters like the Xhelozi and the flickering lights.
I’ll be finishing this review with this final thought: I’m very disappointed and this really bummed me out. 2 stars.