This review is spoiler-free.
“He’d left me burning brighter than the candles. Now I just felt burned.”
Published: 2019, by HarperTeen.
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Romance, Retellings
Contains: Anger, Neglect, Death, Violence
‘The Beholder’ tells the story of Selah, the only daughter of the leader of Potomac, who must follow her duty to find a partner and secure the future of her people. However, after a public rejection from her closest childhood friend, Selah must set sail across the Atlantic and meet a series of potential suitors. The catch? If she doesn’t come home engaged, she shouldn’t come home at all.
This book had a lot of potential. An incredible premise with strong female characters and a romantic plot to make your heart skip. However, the reality was unfortunately disappointing.
The problem I had with this book, and I’m admitting I only got around 158 pages in, was that the plot was too dry to handle. Nothing happened, or whether the pace was just too slow for anything to happen up to that point, which meant that I fell into a slump with it. I couldn’t read it, I didn’t want to read it, but at the same time I couldn’t not. Although, I’m aware that it’s difficult to review a novel you haven’t finished, but I couldn’t bring myself to continue.
Selah, as a protagonist, also fell flat. She simply accepted everything she was handed, good and bad, and didn’t go against anything, regardless of whether she believed it was right or not. Personally, I couldn’t relate to her, finding her personality lacking, which didn’t give me much to hold on to.
The premise itself was interesting, and I’m a little disappointed in myself for not discovering where it was heading. However, the world building got too confusing for me to handle. From what I understood at the beginning of the novel, it was a fictional universe. However, Europe existed, yet nothing else did. It was a little too confusing for me, and pulled me out of the world a bit.
Overall, this was a disappointing read. Although, it has a gorgeous cover which set high expectations, the reality lacked.
Have you ever given up on a book before? Or do you force yourself to finish?