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1.17.2017

Review: The Valiant by Lesley Livingston

The Valiant by Lesley Livingston

Notes: ARC received via Amazon Vine.
Young Adult, Historical, Ancient Civ, Romance
Digital/Print/Audio (384 pages, RAZORBILL)
Princess. Captive. Gladiator. Always a Warrior.
Fallon is the daughter of a proud Celtic king and the younger sister of the legendary fighter Sorcha. When Fallon was just a child, Sorcha was killed by the armies of Julius Caesar.
On the eve of her seventeenth birthday, Fallon is excited to follow in her sister's footsteps and earn her place in her father's war band. She never gets the chance.
Fallon is captured and sold to an elite training school for female gladiators—owned by none other than Julius Caesar himself. In a cruel twist of fate, the man who destroyed Fallon’s family might be her only hope of survival.
Now, Fallon must overcome vicious rivalries, deadly fights in and out of the arena, and perhaps the most dangerous threat of all: her irresistible feelings for Cai, a young Roman soldier and her sworn enemy.
A richly imagined fantasy for fans of Sarah J. Maas and Cinda Williams Chima, The Valiant recounts Fallon’s gripping journey from fierce Celtic princess to legendary gladiator and darling of the Roman empire.
Author Site: website

An ancient civ YA worth reading! (4 stars)


I don't often reach for historical YA but when I do it's usually something in the ancient civ. There's just something interesting about times when people believed in large pantheons and so much of the world was still undiscovered. Back when wars were fought hand to hand and there were interesting codes of honor. THE VALIANT delivers very well on these aspects so buckle up!

While I never quite stopped thinking of Fallon as a bit of a fool who thought way too highly of herself and her own skills, the overall story was very good. With interesting twists and turns, nary a slow spot, fights galore, and lots of romantic tension I had a difficult time putting this one down. Aside from not tolerating Fallon's personality well the only complaint I really have is that the story felt unfinished, as if it were written with loose threads in hopes of a sequel but a little too wrapped up to feel quite like one was needed.

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