Saturday, June 7, 2014

Saturday Shorts: Tiger's Promise

Before the curse, there was a promise. A prequel to the bestselling Tiger’s Curse series, this much anticipated novella recalls the beginning of Ren and Kishan’s story. Before Kelsey there was a girl, raised by a villain, whose love for a hero changed the course of history.
Trapped under the thumb of her abusive and powerful father Lokesh, Yesubai struggles to keep her own magical abilities secret while evading his dark powers. When Lokesh promises Yesubai to the prince of a neighboring kingdom, she becomes the central pawn in his plot to destroy the ruling family and take power for himself. Yesubai is trapped by her father’s threats and desperate to protect the man she comes to love, but she knows that any decision she makes will have dire consequences. As dark forces gather around her, Yesubai must decide if she’s willing to reveal that somewhere deep within her she has the power to change everything.  Quoted from Goodreads


This was actually a bit of a surprise for me how much I liked it. Warning, I will be referencing a few things from the Tiger's Curse series, though I'll try to keep spoilers to a minimum. If you've read the Tiger's Curse series, you know how this ends, so it was a bit like going into Titanic.  The ship sinks.  However, I found I really enjoyed learning more about Yesubai's character; plus, we get a few twists I didn't expect that helped keep the story fresh.

To be honest,  Yesubai isn't really a character I was all that interested in. She's sort of this tragic figure who betrays the two brothers, and while you know she's a victim of Lokesh, she still betrays the brothers.  You never know how much she really loves Kishan and how much she was playing him. This book does a lot for her character.  Sure, it doesn't excuse her faults, but it does explain why she did what she did and how she felt.  It also gives you a chance to fall in love with Kishan again, while not secretly cheering on team Ren.  It doesn't excuse what they do or what happens, but it's nice seeing it from a different POV.

It's also interesting to see early Lokesh before everything with the curse happens. He's the same evil person, but at this point he's still on his rise to power.  His evil is also more personal since it's his only daughter.  Plus there are a few extras at the end of the novella, and if you think he's bad to Yesubai, wait till you read her mom's story.

So, yeah, the extras.  Possibly my favorite part of the book. They were a wonderful little surprise. I loved seeing Ren's first thoughts upon meeting Yesubai and the extend of their relationship.  Like I said before, we also get a very sad story from her mom's POV.  Finally, my favorite, we get a teaser chapter from Kishan's POV thats a sneak peek into Tiger's Dream!  I'd kind of given up on that book, so it's fun to see concrete evidence that Coleen Houck still working on it.

This is an excellent novella for fans of the series, and if you haven't read any of the Tiger's Curse books yet, this serves as a decent introduction (though I would probably read at least the first book before reading this).  I'm going to give it a strong 3.5 stars.  It probably would be more, but since I already sort of knew the plot (though, again, a few twists I didn't see coming) and I'm opposed to sad endings and my favorite parts were actually the extras in the end, I'm not going to give it the stronger 4 stars.  Still, it's an excellent addition to the series, and I'm delighted we have it.  

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