Sunday 1 November 2009

Review: The Queen's Bastard - C.E Murphy

The Queen's Bastard by CE Murphy
The Inheritor's cycle, book 1

Genre: Fantasy historical something
Pages: 448
Published: 2008

In a world where religion has ripped apart the old order, Belinda Primrose is the queen's secret weapon. The unacknowledged daughter of Lorraine, the first queen to sit on the Aulunian throne, Belinda has been trained as a spy since the age of twelve by her father, Lorraine's lover and spymaster.

Cunning and alluring, fluent in languages and able to take on any persona, Belinda can infiltrate the glittering courts of Echon where her mother's enemies conspire. She can seduce at will and kill if she must. But Belinda's spying takes a new twist when her witchlight appears.

Now Belinda's powers are unlike anything Lorraine could have imagined. They can turn an obedient daughter into a rival who understands that anything can be hers, including the wickedly sensual Javier, whose throne Lorraine both covets and fears. But Javier is also witchbreed, a man whose ability rivals Belinda's own . . . and can be just as dangerous.

Amid court intrigue and magic, loyalty and love can lead to more daring passions, as Belinda discovers that power is the ultimate aphrodisiac.

So I am not entirely sure if this is a fantasy world, or an alternate universe, or alternate timeline. It has the essence of 16th century Europe and there is where she lost me the first time. You see there is with one particular person too much that is the same. Queen Lorraine, who has the same appearance, family history and more as a certain Virgin Queen. It is so obvious that it is her that it is not funny anymore. The rest she hides better and I liked that. But I wish she at least could have changed the name of her dad or the color of her hair. She could have done with this world if the had created more of her own. She could still have had a Virgin Queen, but you know, another name, another and etc.

Then there is the thing that made me appalled by this book. I was horrified and I have never hated a heroine more. First of, Belinda Primrose, the bastard daughter of the queen is trained to be an assassin. She is weird as a little kid and does things they would not do. Then her father, a father I could not understand, sends her out to kill at 12, and she does it. Ok, I can take a little sociopath. Then we move forward and she sleeps her way to her pray. She is no better than a prostitute, and then there is the first scene that has me wondering. Things move on and she does seem to think with her libido, she is supposed to be a great assassin but still she could almost mess things up with suddenly having to have sex. That is not the mark of a great assassin.

By now I am not that fond of her, she clearly has issues, but then there is the scene that made me think this was the most horrible heroine I have ever read. There is a rape scene, she does it, and then she helps to do it to the victim. After that I am mostly sick to my stomach of Belinda, and I am speeding trough the book to just get it over with. Thinking only of the fact that I sadly have book 2 also. And I don't want to read more about her.

There is no other characters to like, they all have issues too, and even the nice one does something bad. Sure it is all a play of politics and more but people does have some decency in them.

This was clearly not the book for me. Some scenes I can just not stomach, and I can not read a book about someone I despise.

Cover thoughts: Yes I do like this cover, feels strange to say that not after this review.
Why I read it: My own book
 1, because I could not think with a clear mind


  1. Great honest review! Not rushing out to order this one yet.

  2. Oh!Oh!Oh! Did you finish it? Because I couldn't finish it but I have questions!!!!

  3. hahahahaha

    ahhh blod, you make me laugh.

    guess i wont be reading this one anytime soon!

    -Aimee :)

  4. It say something to me that you made it through and gave a honest review that was not spiteful or unkind.
    You take care

  5. B,

    I'm sorry this one was not to your liking - I think I would not have liked those scenes either.


  6. Oh, I'm so sorry you didn't enjoy it! I hope your next book is much better! Thanks for the review. I think I might skip this one....

  7. OMG. She helps with a rape?! I'm all squicked. This is surprising because I've read other C.E. Murphy books and the heroines in them don't sound like this one at ALL.

  8. I don't know why, but I just read the line, "Ok, I can take a little sociopath," and burst out laughing. Great :-)

    Not so great, however, that she participates in a rape. That is pretty revolting. Don't think I'll be reading this one at all.

  9. I have all the books in this series - admittedly i have not read them yet ...

    I am hoping to get to them in the late part of the year...

    thanks for your honest take on this one...


  10. Alaine,
    I could not be anything than completely honest with this one. Some of Belinda's traits can't be made nicer.

    I went to your blog and answered ;)

    Good that I could make you laugh. We all need that every day.
    Is the icon new btw? Looks nice.

    Thanks, I sure do not wanna be mean, so I always try to say my honest opinions in a nice way. That is important to me.

    No, those scenes, no. That is all I can say. It was disturbing.

    I had not have that much luck lately it seems. I think I must switch genre and or read something really happy.

    Yes, perhaps the author wanted it not to sound like that. Like the girl perhaps wanted it. But honestly it was rape, she helped by using magic and then she also raped the girl herself. It was horrible.

    Hehe, I am glad people like my lines.
    But yes she grew up more psychopathic, and that rape, well how was I supposed to want to read on when she did that?!

    I hope you will like them better, some things I am just not strong enough for

  11. I get the chills by your description of the heroine. Nope this is not the book for me.

  12. Leontine,
    She was, unpleasant.

  13. Thanks for the honest review. Maybe I need to start an "avoid at all cost" list.

  14. Carol,
    I just can't take characters I do not like, I need to enjoy some to read a book

  15. I know how much you love diversity in your books and I am sorry to see that this one did not fit the bill Blodeuedd! But you know I do love the honest review!

  16. Honesty is the best, and here, well I still do not wanna think about some things. it just made me feel a bit depressed

  17. I appreciate the honest assessment. Sorry you found the book disappointing. Having a heroine I can't like...that ruins the whole book for me.

    Diary of an Eccentric

  18. Anna,
    That is so true. A hero or heroine you can't like, then why bother

  19. Oh, not so sure about this one. Sorry it wasn't to your taste, the whole rape scene would have made me wanted to put it down.

    Dottie :)

  20. Dottie,
    And it was just the way I felt she tried not to make it into a rapescene. All while I was thinking magic is just on that girl and she does not want to. it was just double wrong



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