Review: The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

July 11, 2014 4 stars, Book Review, Young Adult 33 ★★★★

Review: The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. PearsonThe Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson
Series: The Remnant Chronicles #1
Published by Henry Holt & Co (BYR) on July 8, 2014
Genres: Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 492
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher

*This book was provided by the Publisher for review. No compensation was provided and all opinions are strictly my own.

In this timeless new trilogy about love and sacrifice, a princess must find her place in a reborn world.

In a society steeped in tradition, Princess Lia’s life follows a preordained course. As First Daughter, she is expected to have the revered gift of sight—but she doesn’t—and she knows her parents are perpetrating a sham when they arrange her marriage to secure an alliance with a neighboring kingdom—to a prince she has never met.

On the morning of her wedding, Lia flees to a distant village. She settles into a new life, hopeful when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deception abounds, and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—even as she finds herself falling in love.


A FUN twist on a predictable story

The Kiss of Deception is an old story told in a new light. The Princess runs away from an arranged marriage thinking only of herself. She’s young, I can buy that. The Prince that she left high and dry decides to track her down to see just what kind of girl runs from duty. An old enemy of the kingdom takes the opportunity to send an assassin after the now unprotected Princess. Predictable premise, I feel. Here’s where it gets cool. Assassin or Prince, they both find the Princess in the little village she is hiding in as a tavern wench. They of course don’t let on that they know who she is, and hide who they truly are as well. The author ups the ante though, she doesn’t let you know which one is which! The good looking blonde with kind eyes, or the dark dashing man with stormy emotions? The book is fun in the sense that it’s a big game of who’s who. If you don’t sit and attempt to figure it out (because really it’s a little obvious) then you get to enjoy the ride not knowing who to root for. Will the Princess fall for the wrong man? Possibly! I’ve NEVER said this but, it’s a bit of a LOVE TRIANGLE DONE RIGHT!

Quality Writing

It’s not just a fun story, the writing is done well. Plenty of character depth, some you’ll like and understand and some you will shake your head at, but the depth is there. The world building comes at just the right pace, it’s not front heavy with tons of family names or places to attempt to sort through. The world is rich with different cultures and religions. I have really enjoyed learning about the different cultures already and I think as the series develops we will see even more back story and depth.

A Touch of Magic

There is the beginning to some magic here, it isn’t fully flushed out but it’s definitely here. I can anticipate the sequels will see magic coming. More exploration of the rich history of the world and the why’s behind certain cultural teachings. I love the depth and the way that they aren’t just throwing fireballs willy-nilly from the start. There seems to be rules to the magic that are still being explored by our main character which is great. I love to see room to grow.


The Princess is very self centered and runs away from an arranged marriage thinking only of herself. However, life as it tends to begins to teach her lessons. The first has to do with her best friend and her love story. Then news from home slaps her in the face, she has acted selfishly and has cost the kingdom it’s much needed treaty with the foreign power she was engaged to. Duty is heavier than a loveless marriage. The Princess grows, she blossoms and she is a little bit kick-ass. I love it. I don’t always love her, or her decisions, but I can see where she is coming from and I loved watching her grow. She grows stronger, she can endure. I love this lesson.

Sum it up already

I loved The Kiss of Deception. It’s not Tolkien, but it was a great read that I will be recommending to friends. I even asked Tabitha if I could keep it… Yes, I liked it a little.


Gamer girl extraordinaire, law student, mother of twin boys and one lil girl. I can often be found taking care of my family, working on home renovation projects, reading, gaming, and all the while text warring with Tabitha.

33 Responses to “Review: The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson”

  1. Kirsty-Marie

    Yesss! Really looking forward to reading it when I can, I really enjoyed her The Adoration of Jenna Fox, so wanted to see how this ones done. I don’t mind triangles when they’re done well so yay, finally one that wasn’t brought down by it. Sounds like good character growth too, hopefully the series get’s even better as it goes along. 🙂 Glad you enjoyed it!
    Kirsty-Marie recently posted…Review: On the FenceMy Profile

  2. Karen

    I was so sure that I wouldn’t like this one. I HATE love triangles but everyone keeps saying this is great story with a twist on the love triangle. I’ll have to give it a try to see for myself.
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  3. Nikki

    That is SO interesting that you said you loved the “who’s who” aspect – that’s actually the main reason I *didn’t* love this book! I guessed who it was pretty early, too, but I was still pulling my hair out second-guessing myself and trying to keep details straight and trying to add more “proof” that my guess was right… and that’s just not something I enjoyed doing. =S

    I totally agree about the writing and the magic though – those were fantastic, and I can’t wait to see how the worldbuilding grows as Lia learns more about the magic and the world’s history!
    Nikki recently posted…Review: TRAITOR’S BLADE by Sebastian de CastellMy Profile

    • Tina

      Oh, I guessed who was who really early too but the fact that there was even a little doubt in my mind really made me appreciate what the author was trying to do! It was a neat trick well done. Along with the depth of world building and the growth I felt like the who’s who added a refreshing kick, I can see how someone could find it annoying though!
      Tina recently posted…Book Review: The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. PearsonMy Profile

  4. Jessica @ Rabid Reads

    Welp, LOL. It pretty much looks like we had the same issues with this book, only I felt MUCH more strongly about those issues. I agree that there was a lot of character growth for Princess, which is probably why I’ll read the next book despite my irritation with this one, but I could never totally get passed her blasé abandonment of responsibilities. But I’m SO glad you finally found one that you like! Lovely review, Tina 😉
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  5. Anya

    I quite enjoyed the twist/love triangle confusion a lot. At first I thought I had missed something, but then was pretty confident that I was supposed to be fooled/surprised ;-). I’m really excited to see how the magic is expanded in subsequent books!
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  6. Tressa @ Wishful Endings

    I LOVED this one! I loved how she developed during the story and how she comes to accept some things in the end and I have a feeling I’m going to love her even more in the next book because she won’t be going through the same growth – probably different growth, but not the same. I also loved the twist with the guys. I totally fell for it and can’t believe I did. Really. Lol! Great review!

  7. Anya

    I’m so so happy that you enjoyed this one! I thought I knew who was who and was actually completely wrong and confused for a bit but so happy to have been surprised ;-). It’s exactly like you said, an old story told in a fresh way and I loved that! I’m really excited to find out more about the magic and world since I agree, things are going to get deep in future books 😀
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