Hello everyone and welcome to my tour stop for the #NeverTiltingTour hosted by the lovely Shealea (Shut Up, Shealea) and Caffeine Book Tours! Also, a special thank you to HarperTeen and Edelweiss for providing me with an e-arc in exchange for an honest review. So without further ado, let’s get to the blog post! (PS-if you’re a Philippines-based reader/blogger, please check out the details for an awesome giveaway going on at the end of the review!)
The Never Tilting World (The Never Tilting World #1) by Rin Chupeco
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, LGBTQ
Publish date: October 15th, 2019 by HarperTeen
Rating: 3.5/5 stars
Frozen meets Mad Max in this epic teen fantasy duology bursting with star-crossed romance, immortal heroines, and elemental magic, perfect for fans of Furyborn.
Generations of twin goddesses have long ruled Aeon. But seventeen years ago, one sister’s betrayal defied an ancient prophecy and split their world in two. The planet ceased to spin, and a Great Abyss now divides two realms: one cloaked in perpetual night, the other scorched by an unrelenting sun.
While one sister rules Aranth—a frozen city surrounded by a storm-wracked sea —her twin inhabits the sand-locked Golden City. Each goddess has raised a daughter, and each keeps her own secrets about her sister’s betrayal.
But when shadowy forces begin to call their daughters, Odessa and Haidee, back to the site of the Breaking, the two young goddesses —along with a powerful healer from Aranth, and a mouthy desert scavenger —set out on separate journeys across treacherous wastelands, desperate to heal their broken world. No matter the sacrifice it demands.
“A demoness is what they call a goddess that men cannot control.”
Rin Chupeco has been an author on my tbr radar for quite some time now and when I first read that this was a fantasy series pitched as a mix between Frozen, Mad Max, and Furyborn this sounded right up my alley for my first read! Before diving in, I didn’t know that not only was there POC characters that were Asian-coded but Middle-Eastern coded as well! Being half-Filipino and half-Persian myself, this was such a rare instance for me to find both of my cultural backgrounds in a book; so this was a pleasant surprise and had me even more excited to dive in.
“The elders would tell us how the Sun Goddess Latona had ripped the sky in two and feasted on her twin sister’s heart, dooming us to a lifetime of wasteland because she could not stop craving the light. We were born hating them. We had every reason to.”
I really enjoyed how Chupeco morphed a fantasy dealing with higher beings like goddesses with a world dealing with the repercussions of a very real world problem we are dealing with today: climate change. Being able to combine two opposite sides of the spectrum in regards to storytelling really intrigued me and I think was a really positive thing going for this book. I also really appreciated how diverse she made the cast of the characters, featuring bisexual characters, characters suffering from PTSD, a F/F romance, and a character that is a hand amputee. In addition to the broader themes of Asian and Middle Eastern-coded characters, this gave it a more intimate feeling as far as giving a larger audience the opportunity to identify with the characters, even perhaps for the first time.
Where I truly felt like the book could have improved to live up to the potential this had as a solid first book of a new series was the pacing and amount of POVs. I found the pacing to be fairly inconsistent throughout; there would be times where you would be completely sucked in yet other times where it felt like it really slowed down, which ultimately would make me lose my concentration and take me out of the story. It’s important for the first book of a new series to maintain a consistent pace especially when introducing a new world to be certain that the reader is captivated with every page until the last and has left them wanting more.
The POVs of this book could have been tweaked in either of two ways: cutting it down from four to two to make for a clearer path for the story or making the characters more distinguishable rather than all of them seeming to sound like one speaker. I am usually apprehensive when a story has multiple POVs because if done right it can lead for a very character-driven story and provide you with a deeper connection to every character, but if not executed as well it can be quite confusing for the reader and I found it to be the latter in this case. I have always believed that writing multiple POVs especially for a fantasy series is very difficult to execute well and I feel that with a bit more tweaking it would have also aided in making the overall story stronger!
“For every gift, a terror. For every radiance, a sacrifice.”
Overall, I think The Never Tilting World had a great foundation with lots of potential for bringing forth yet another unique and diverse fantasy story in 2019! There were a lot of great things going for this book but overall I believe that if we were given two POVs instead of four, more consistent pacing, and not as many unneeded side stories then it would have made for a clear, concise storyline with an extra umph at every turn of the page. I look forward to reading more of this series and hopefully get an even more action-packed sequel!
About the author:
Rin Chupeco has written obscure manuals for complicated computer programs, talked people out of their money at event shows, and done many other terrible things. She now writes about ghosts and fantastic worlds but is still sometimes mistaken for a revenant. She is the author of The Girl from the Well, its sequel, The Suffering, and the Bone Witch trilogy.
Despite an unsettling resemblance to Japanese revenants, Rin always maintains her sense of hummus. Born and raised in Manila, Philippines, she keeps four pets: a dog, two birds, and a husband. Dances like the neighbors are watching.
Author website —https://www.rinchupeco.com/
Instagram — https://www.instagram.com/rinchupeco
Pinterest — https://www.pinterest.com/rinchupeco/
ATTN Philippines-based readers! Want to win a signed arc of The Never Tilting World? Then you don’t want to miss out on entering the giveaway that’s going on now! Good luck!
Prize: Signed ARC of The Never Tilting World by Rin Chupeco
Open to Philippine residents only
Link to Rafflecopter: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/950d261636/
Be sure to check out the other #NeverTiltingTour tour stops this week as well as participate in our #CBTTC twitter chat!