Title: The Heart of Betrayal
Author: Mary E. Pearson
Series: The Remnant Chronicles, book 2/3
Genre: Fantasy, Romance, YA
Publisher: Henry Holt
Release Date: July 7, 2015
Note: This post reviews the second book of the The Remnant Chronicles. You may like to read the first book in the series, The Kiss of Deception, before reading this review.
This first book left us with Lia and Rafe being taken captive in the kingdom of Venda. Lia has discovered, much to her dismay, that Rafe, the man she has fallen head-over-heels in love with, is the very same prince she jilted on her wedding day! *oh the irony – I love it so much. She, however, is alone in this realization. At this point, Lia feels lied to and betrayed by Rafe, who knew she was his betrothed all along, but didn’t tell her who he really was. Her trust in him wavers, but throughout the book, they rebuild their relationship with openness and honesty. Lia realizes that she is more in love with Rafe than ever, even though he is the Prince, and wants to spend her life with him. They plot and plan how to escape Venda.
In an attempt to spare her life, Kaden presents Lia to the Komizar, the cruel ruler of Venda, claiming that she has the gift. The gift is a sort of magical power that has been passed down through the royalty of Morrighan, though it had been rumored that the princess lacked it. Kaden, desperate to save her life, thought this as good a way as any. The Komizar is intrigued by Lia, and allows her to live as his prisoner, humiliating and degrading her at every chance he gets. He is not convinced that Lia does in fact have the gift, but he thinks she could yet be useful to the kingdom in other ways.
At this point, we have all three men in the story interested in Lia, for one reason or another. Rafe and Lia genuinely love each and want to spend the rest of their lives together. Kaden loves Lia, but Lia does not feel the same way toward him. And Lia despises the Komizar, who begins to see that if they were to wed, it would be a hugely advantageous war strategy: the traitor Princess of Morrighan, who insulted the kingdom of Dalbreck by refusing their Prince, married to the all-powerful Komizar of Venda.
Will Lia be forced into an abusive marriage with Komizar, or will Rafe save them both and find a way for them to be together? And where exactly does Kaden fit in with all of this? And what will happen to each country on the brink of war?