ARC Review: Rosemarked by Livia Blackburne

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I received an e-ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Title: Rosemarked
Author: Livia Blackburne
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Publication Date: November 7, 2017
Stars: 3.5/5

Summary (from Goodreads): A healer who cannot be healed . . .

When Zivah falls prey to the deadly rose plague, she knows it’s only a matter of time before she fully succumbs. Now she’s destined to live her last days in isolation, cut off from her people and unable to practice her art—until a threat to her village creates a need that only she can fill.

A soldier shattered by war . . .

Broken by torture at the hands of the Amparan Empire, Dineas thirsts for revenge against his captors. Now escaped and reunited with his tribe, he’ll do anything to free them from Amparan rule—even if it means undertaking a plan that risks not only his life but his very self.

Thrust together on a high-stakes mission to spy on the capital, the two couldn’t be more different: Zivah, deeply committed to her vow of healing, and Dineas, yearning for vengeance. But as they grow closer, they must find common ground to protect those they love. And amidst the constant fear of discovery, the two grapple with a mutual attraction that could break both of their carefully guarded hearts.

This smart, sweeping fantasy with a political edge and a slow-burning romance will capture fans of The Lumatere Chronicles and An Ember in the Ashes.

Goodreads | Book Depository | Amazon

When I first saw this one, I was very intrigued. I love the idea of a healer teaming up with a soldier to save the world. This story contains potions and spying, and the main character is admirable. Unfortunately, the pacing of the story is too slow for my liking, so the book wasn’t as enjoyable as it could have been.

I always love a good political fantasy novel. Rosemarked tells the story of a world contaminated with a plague, where those who contract it are rejected by society. An exiled healer who is infected then joins forces with a soldier to sneak into the capital and try to stop a war. In order to gain information effectively, the soldier’s memories are temporarily removed, which I found to be an interesting tactic. It’s almost like he is two different characters, which added some tension. I also really enjoyed the healing aspects of the book, since I haven’t read too many books that have a focus on potions and herbs. This book is original and complex, and I would definitely recommend it to fans of books like The Winner’s Curse.

I loved Zivah’s character! She is a very gifted healer who is pretty experimental. Zivah is actually so badass, and not afraid to use her pet snake as a weapon, which surprised me. I really sympathized with her, since she is Rosemarked but can’t do anything to heal herself. Zivah is so caring and willing to help others, and I really admired her determination.

The only thing that I found unenjoyable about this book was the pacing. I loved the beginning where Zivah is taking the test to become a healer, but after that, the plot fell flat. I found the story difficult to get through, since there is almost no action until the very end. There is a lot of character development, but I would have preferred more suspense and excitement in a book like this.

Rosemarked is a political fantasy in which two characters sneak into the capital to stop a war. I loved the main character and her healing abilities and the use of potions. However, the slow pacing of the book was frustrating, so I didn’t enjoy it as much as I had hoped.

7 thoughts on “ARC Review: Rosemarked by Livia Blackburne

  1. Sabrina Fox says:

    What is it with books and super unique names? I’ve never heard of Zivah before. It still seems like I book I would like to read, even if the pace was a little slow. 🙂 The cover is cute.

    Like

  2. Kelly says:

    I’m sorry to hear that you didn’t enjoy this as much as you had hoped you would. The pacing of novels can really add to or take away enjoyment, and in this case, I can see why it would be so frustrating. I absolutely adore fantasy (and this was one my TBR list for ages!), but when there is a slow pacing in a fantasy novel, I end up getting bored way too easily. Great review, thank you for sharing!

    Like

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