Thursday, 3 August 2017

Dividing Eden by Joelle Charbonneau: Book Review

From the author of the New York Times bestselling Testing trilogy comes a sweeping new fantasy series, perfect for fans of Victoria Aveyard and Sarah J. Maas.

Twins Carys and Andreus were never destined to rule Eden. With their older brother next in line to inherit the throne, the future of the kingdom was secure.

But appearances—and rivals—can be deceiving. When Eden’s king and crown prince are killed by assassins, Eden desperately needs a monarch, but the line of succession is no longer clear. With a ruling council scheming to gain power, Carys and Andreus are faced with only one option—to take part in a Trial of Succession that will determine which one of them is worthy of ruling the kingdom.

As sister and brother, Carys and Andreus have always kept each other safe—from their secrets, from the court, and from the monsters lurking in the mountains beyond the kingdom’s wall. But the Trial of Succession will test the bonds of trust and family.

With their country and their hearts divided, Carys and Andreus will discover exactly what each will do to win the crown. How long before suspicion takes hold and the thirst for power leads to the ultimate betrayal?


The reading slump I have been in for a few months now has possibly been absolutely eradicated thanks to this beauty of a novel. I have found myself reeling and craving more after finishing Dividing Eden and as always with great books I am counting down the days, through my Goodreads account, to when Eden Conquered releases next year on the 12th of June. This is definitely a great read for anyone who thoroughly enjoyed Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas or Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard. You may be wondering where the magical elements might be hiding within the story - well just take my word and WAIT FOR IT... Read on and be bedazzled!

I think this is the first time I've read a book with twins as the protagonists. Carys is very strong willed, able to use a knife with apt skill, and is very protective of her twin brother. Andreus is a sweet talker of the ladies, an all round lovely guy who saved a young boy from the streets, and loves to help with the windmills and Masters of Light to keep the city safe from vicious monsters hiding in the deathly shadows of Eden. Together they are an unstoppable force who would die for one another, but then their father and older brother, King and Crown Prince of Eden, are assassinated and their mother is driven mad by grief. Thanks to the help of the Seer, Lady Imogen, the council are prevented from immediately handing the throne to the next eligible head and are forced to start a series of trials in which Carys and Andreus are divided to compete against one another to determine their capability of handling the title of King or Queen of Eden.

Strange, is it not, that a book you might pick up will seem like it is foreseeable. That's what I felt like in the first half of the book until I was blown away by so many changes and twists that made me wonder why I did not pick it up earlier. I mean, how could I have known! It was such a wonderful change with reading about two twins who are close and dedicated to protecting one another from ever-lurking evils behind every corridor and under every stone, soon pitted against one another to test their loyalties to their people and the seven virtues that their city was built upon long before their existence.


  • Carys and Andreus are considered EQUAL! There is no sexism or prejudism over what they are except that no one but the Queen, who was supposedly too mad to be trusted, knew who was older than the other. In so many stories, movies, or TV shows, I see how the male will always get the throne no matter what. To have this story break out of that trope is a nice change.

  • Carys and her friend, Larkin, have such a close bond, no matter the fact that Larkin is a commoner and Carys is a princess. They have never let that change anything between them and to be honest, I totally root them together. Better than setting Carys up with a guy she barely knows, not when she knows Larkin inside out and they're already so close.

  • The tension was ablaze through the whole book and it definitely kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time. There was always something going wrong and I know how frustrating that is in real life, but it's hellishly entertaining in books. Let's have more shit go wrong in novels please!

  • Magic and divination is in the book, no matter how little, and it is AWESOME! It's there and I'm happy. Not too much, not too little. Just enough to make you go hell yeah and run the streets praising the Gods for Joelle to bring a brand new fiery couple of protagonists in to root for!

  • It got me out of my reading slump. NEED I SAY MORE?

I have rated this book a 4.75 out of 5 stars because the last half of the book was the real turning point for me. I have to be honest, I felt like the first half was a little slow for me but that could just be the reading slump talking. I truly enjoyed this book and I'm so happy to have found yet another awesome fantasy with strong characters that prove that not everything in fantasy has to be a certain way. Do I really have to wait until June 2018 to read Eden Conquered though?

Thank you HarperCollins New Zealand for the review copy of Dividing Eden! Go check out their links here:



Go add Dividing Eden to your Goodreads list HERE

Go buy it on MightyApe with 1 day delivery in New Zealand HERE

Buy it on Book Depository with free shipping world wide HERE

Find it on the HarperCollins NZ website HERE

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Dividing Eden

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