Daughter of Camelot (Empire of Shadows 1) - Glynis Cooney


Uncorrected Arc provided by Netgalley


DNF at 40%


This seems to be turning into a habit. But here it is, another netgalley book that I just couldn't convince myself to finish.

As it is, the beginning turned out to be the "best" part of this story. We are given some vague glimpses into middle age (Arthurian time frame) life. Costumes, ideas, prejudices... like twins being seen as a bad omen. And normally drowned.
Let's say the word "witch" was thrown around a little too casually.


The twins are Deirdre (our main character) and Rhys. Now Deirdre has a "curse" attached to her name.

Apparently she will be a mother of many... but since she starts out as a tomboy, someone more interested in fighting against her twin, and envying his luck in being born a man, let's say that predicament scares her to death.


The story starts on the eve of the twins' birthday. They will be turning fourteen.


As it turns out, it will be decided that Deirdre will accompany her older sister to Court where she will be acquainted with the ways of Court as befits someone of the nobility. Even those of the smaller nobility, as is Deirdre's case.

There, in Court, and through Deirdre's eyes, we will be shown the customary plot of Christianity against the old ways (obsessed crazy monks... and all of that).
Nothing new in this.

Also, she's the victim of an attempted rape... because what would be of an historical romance without rape attempts?

Oh, but there's this dwarf that saves her with his brilliant wit...

Also, there's this girl who will hate Deirdre's guts, and vice versa. But later on, Deirdre will definitely get even, in a way that was just unbelievable.


Then, the thing that made me completely lose the will to continue reading this:

A fourteen year old girl, a tomboy of a girl, wouldn't be smitten by some pretty boy's face and tales... (okay, by his war tales maybe), but by him? At first sight!
And then he's a real rake, who just wants to take advantage of her!

And she thinks she can play him... (I would be laughing, if this wasn't actually sad)

It's like those High School plots... but in the Middle Ages.


It was just absurd, and ridiculous, the way she decided to go all by herself to another realm, as some of sort of Mata Hari... (I've mentioned absurd right?) in order to help the High King Arthur, who has just been abandoned by the two people he loved the most:
_Guinevere and Lancelot.


Look if she were older...
If she had her sister's Nia court training, fine, I could "see" that happening. Far fetched, sure, but Nia has a brain, and she's not afraid to use it.


As it was, it was just too convoluted. Do you really expect me to believe that a sheltered girl will uncover anything of worth that will help Arthur's position?
For me, it was just too much.

I won't even say this is more appropriate to younger readers, because the way these fourteen year old girls talk about taking lovers, or trading favors, is just... absurd.

Another case in which the plot was taken over by hormones and YA drama fest.