Series Review: Is this series worth your time? Does it get better as the novels progress? Or does it get worse? Find out below:
Synopsis for House of Royals (from Goodreads):
Every town has its history and skeletons, but Silent Bend, Mississippi’s are darker than most. Ruled from the shadows by the House—the immortal Born and their aging, enslaved Bitten—everyone knows not to go out after dark and that the police will never look into crimes involving blood.
Alivia Ryan didn’t know the man who claims to be her father through a will even existed until she inherits the Conrath plantation. Instead of the sleepy house she expects, she finds a mansion and a staff who look at her with fear in their eyes.
Ian Ward tried to kill Alivia the first time they met, and then insisted he train her to defend herself against the House, who he claims will try to manipulate and take her in for their own political reasons. And the growing attraction between them will threaten their lives—Ian is a sworn enemy of the House.
In Silent Bend, people disappear, the threat of a demented King and the legend of his resurrecting Queen hang over everyone’s heads, and proving loyalty means far more than blood. You’d better watch who you trust in this town…
Series: House of Royals; Blood Descendants Universe
Spin-off Series: Crown of Death
Author: Keary Taylor
# of Books: 8 (Full Reading Order Here)
Book Order: Chronological & Connected
Story Arcs: Books 1-5; Books 6-8
Genre: New Adult, Paranormal, Romance, Vampires, Politics
Heat Rating: warm
Point of View: First Person, Single
Publication Dates: June 2015 – July 2017
Source & Format: Netgalley & Own–eBook
**This post was originally posted as an ARC review of the first book of the series. It has now been updated to include the newest publications in the series and my reason to not finish the series.**
Why I Picked it Up / My Expectations:
Last year, I tried my hand at a New Adult vampire novel, Queen of Blood and loved it. Despite the bad rep they get, I enjoy the action and excitement most vampire novels have. I also love the new adult genre as a whole and so combining those two things seem like a winning combination.
So when I saw House of Royals on Goodreads and saw that it had a political spin on it, I just had to have it in my hands.
The Concept / The World:
I found the vampire world very easy to understand. It’s pretty straightforward which makes for easy reading. I didn’t feel very confused or left behind in any respect.
I also like the darker aspect to it. Vampires that fight their inner nature are great and all, but I don’t mind a little blood shed and these books definitely had their share of action and death.
"This isn't just a game of revenge; it's a game of power." ~Alivia, House of Royals @kearytaylor now that was an interesting turn of events!
— Lauren (@SERIESousBooks) January 15, 2016
The plot for House of Royals is pretty straight-forward and that has its pros and cons. Not having a lot happening really allows the reader to get a grip on the world and the setting. By not focusing on too many issues at once, I was able to get attached to the characters and understand the world they found themselves in. In the same stroke, it made for a story that really only reached its climax within the last few chapters; which is definitely a good thing because it makes you want to pick up that sequel.
I liked Alivia a lot. I thought she had a good head on her shoulder (for the most part) and made the best of the situation she finds herself in. Obviously she makes some mistakes but I totally understand why she would given everything that happens.
The side characters keep things interesting as well. They are unpredictable and have intriguing backstories that kept me wanting more from them.
The romance was really sweet with this one. Forbidden love is my favourite romance trope and this one is pretty flawless. I really liked Ian and Alivia together. I thought they complimented each other well. I simply adored their scenes together and rooted for them the entire time I was reading even when I wasn’t sure what was going to happen next.
My Expectations for the Rest of the Series:
I’m super excited to see what is going to happen next for these characters! I feel like House of Royals built everything up at a great pace that the next few books are going to unleash all the pent up energy and tension between all the characters at play!
–January 6, 2018– Book #2: House of Pawns
It’s been a long time since I read the first one but I found it so easy to get back into this world. I love all its politics and danger. We get to meet a lot more characters and the world is getting a little more complex so it sucked me in.
Alivia has an interesting character development path in this one. Her reaction to certain things (mostly of the romance variety) at the end frustrated me. But we get some interesting plot developments so I’m curious to see what happens next!
–July 4, 2020– Book #3: House of Kings
I think this is one of those series you have to binge read in order to keep all the details in your head and keep you absorbed in the world. While I had a pretty decent recap of the previous book in my head, I really struggled to get into this.
Part of the reason was that I couldn’t keep all the characters straight and what they meant to Alivia and her house. So some of the plot twists fell a little flat for me because I couldn’t remember the importance.
I’m also not a fan of the romance progression here. Multiple love interests just aren’t my jam, especially when I don’t really have any one person I’m rooting for.
This might be the end of my journey here with this series simply because I just don’t know if I can read another 5 more books for a story my interest has waned in.
Why I Won’t Be Continuing This Series:
If I could binge all of this in one go, it would work. But I read these books too far apart for me to still feel the connection to the characters and story.
Series Rating: 4/5
House of Royals 4/5 | House of Pawns 4/5 | House of Kings 3/5
My experience with this book has just cemented vampire New Adult books to be my new favourite subgenre. While House of Royals doesn’t have a lot happening within its own book, I feel like it sets the stage for some great plot twists in its sequels!
Read if You Like: vampire novels, New Adult characters, simple plots
Avoid if You: dislike royal politics, vampires, forbidden love
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