Review: Royal Bastards by Andrew Shvarts

Royal Bastards
by Andrew Shvarts
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Publication Date: May 20, 2017
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Being a bastard blows. Tilla would know. Her father, Lord Kent of the Western Province, loved her as a child, but cast her aside as soon as he had trueborn children.

At sixteen, Tilla spends her days exploring long-forgotten tunnels beneath the castle with her stablehand half brother, Jax, and her nights drinking with the servants, passing out on Jax’s floor while her castle bedroom collects dust. Tilla secretly longs to sit by her father’s side, resplendent in a sparkling gown, enjoying feasts with the rest of the family. Instead, she sits with the other bastards, like Miles of House Hampstedt, an awkward scholar who’s been in love with Tilla since they were children.

Then, at a feast honoring the visiting princess Lyriana, the royal shocks everyone by choosing to sit at the Bastards’ Table. Before she knows it, Tilla is leading the sheltered princess on a late-night escapade. Along with Jax, Miles, and fellow bastard Zell, a Zitochi warrior from the north, they stumble upon a crime they were never meant to witness.

Rebellion is brewing in the west, and a brutal coup leaves Lyriana’s uncle, the Royal Archmagus, dead—with Lyriana next on the list. The group flees for their lives, relentlessly pursued by murderous mercenaries; their own parents have put a price on their heads to prevent the king and his powerful Royal Mages from discovering their treachery.

The bastards band together, realizing they alone have the power to prevent a civil war that will tear their kingdom apart—if they can warn the king in time. And if they can survive the journey . . .



My thoughts…

Royal Bastards is a story about a group of bastards and a princess who are on the run. They saw something they weren’t supposed to see and are now running for their lives. The story is all in Tilla’s POV and I have to be honest, I wasn’t her biggest fan. I was hoping that since this book was written by a male author that the heroine would be this kick-ass character but that wasn’t the case at all.

The story started off strong as we met all the characters and got a feel for what life is like for a bastard in their world. However, once the gang goes on the run, it felt like things slowed way down. Which is strange since they were on the run and dodging danger left and right. I think part of it was the fact that I had a hard time connecting with Tilla. I also felt like the love interest was just sort of thrown in for the sake of it. I didn’t really understand why they were together. Everyone just sort of seemed to be in love pair off with each other but there was little to no build-up of the romance. Sadly, a lot of this story fell under the author telling you how to feel rather than giving you all the pieces so that the reader feels it themselves. I just never fully connected with the characters and didn’t really care one way or the other if they survived or not.

I had such high hopes for Royal Bastards but it didn’t really work for me. It started off strong but when things picked up I felt like the author didn’t give the readers any depth to grasp onto. It was just a bunch of characters running around. Nothing really stuck out to me or made me want to read the next book in the series.



Favorite quote…

When the Princess shows up for dinner she decides to sit at the bastards table instead of the honored seat by Lord Kent.

“You know that awkward silence where someone has committed a horrible social blunder, but no one knows how to react, so everyone is just staring at their feet? Imagine that but in a hall with two hundred people.




3 Thoughts on “Review: Royal Bastards by Andrew Shvarts

  1. Hope your next read is awesome!

  2. Too bad. It’s sounds like a great story though

  3. It’s a shame this wasn’t all you hoped it to be, it really does sound good!

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