Noble Lies is an amazing piece for a debut novel. It takes place in an un-named country, during a time of horse drawn carriages and no electricity. No specific year is mentioned however the book does go by month/day just not chronologically.
This book is soooo long! Oh my! Not a bad thing. I mean geez I read all the Harry Potter books and we know how long they were at the end. I got about 5 hours of sleep last night after staying up all night and day reading, I finally finished around 2am. Yep I pretty much read the entire book in one sitting. I had to...it's that good and I was totally sucked in. I had to know what was going to happen next. I had to know how it was going to play out. How it was going to end.
Noble Lies is a story about nobility and the influence of the church on the Nobles. Influence as in arranged marriages. I found it curious that this religion based their "matches" on the stars at the time of the bride's birth. The focus of this novel is not on religion. They don't explain their beliefs outside of arranged marriages. They don't attend church on Sundays (at least it's not discussed). In fact you don't step into a church at all in the novel. There isn't even a mention of a bible per se. The nobles are taught specific "traditions" applied only to them based on their status by men of the church called Guardians. Guardians are above ministers and below the bishop.
This is also about love. Is love predestined in the stars? Can you fall in love with someone you've never met? Does the God and Universe you've been taught to trust really know what's best for you? All of these are questions that are asked and addressed. Can you fall in love with more than one person? Because Michael does and there in-lies the other part of this story, a love triangle. Although, not in the traditional sense.
SPOILER AHEAD DO NOT READ NEXT PARAGRAPHS IF YOU DON'T WANT TO KNOW
WARNING SPOILER AHEAD
Now, I must address my biggest issue with this story. There is a rape and it is explicit. I did not like it. It made me uncomfortable. It made me cringe. It made me pause and take a break. It made my heart race and not in a good way. It was so upsetting (to me) that I talked to my husband about it. I would have liked to know ahead of time that it was in there. I would have liked to make the decision to read it or not. I know some people are more sensitive to this for whatever reasons and I feel like there should be a disclaimer of some sort.
My other issue was that given the explicit nature of the scene I just mentioned, I would have liked it if the other sex scenes had been just as explicit with lots more love and romance. It felt like the sex was glossed over and almost not as important. That's the thing though it was important. Massively important for the parties involved. I would have liked to been more connected. I've read other "first" time scenes that have brought me to tears and I wanted that for this story. No scratch that I NEEDED it for this story. I needed my open wound to get a pretty sparkly band-aid.
One last thing, way too many exclamation points!!!! Sorry pet-peeve.
Ok done with all that. :-)
I loved Jez. She was so kind and loving. I wanted to protect her and make her happy. She was probably one of the sweetest characters I've ever read in a book. I also loved Michael (he may have cried a little too much though). I wanted him to be a little more alpha although I did understand why he wasn't. I understood his difficulties with tradition versus what was in his heart. I also loved all the supporting characters. The author does a wonderful job of helping us get to know them. I loved Emma. I found Rose to be wonderful. I thought Vincent was fantastic. In fact I think Vincent should get his own story. That way I can sort of get the epilogue I wanted.
Yes I know there was a small epilogue. I wanted more though I'm greedy like that. I didn't like how the story ended for Jez and Michael. I mean I did but I didn't. I had too many unanswered questions. I felt like the story just ended and I sat there going "huh" "um...okay".
So would I recommend this book? YES a big fat YES! It was refreshing and different and I liked it a lot.
Wow I'm pretty sure this is the longest review I've ever left LOL.
(reviewed 5 days after purchase)