Melokai, Rosalyn Kelly Book Review

Hello humans! I have to confess a slight on my part. Rosalyn kindly approached me back in September and asked if I would like to read and review her book Melokai. I said I would love to but might not get to it until after October what with the wedding and the other life events that happened at that time. Well it took me literally months longer than I thought Rosalyn but I am here reviewing your book!

Goodreads Summary:

She thinks it’s the end, but it’s just the beginning.

“Trouble will come from the east. A wolf will claim the throne.”

Legendary warrior Ramya has successfully reigned over Peqkya as Melokai for twelve years. Prosperous, peaceful, and happy, her people love her… or so she thinks.

But Ramya’s time is up. Bracing herself for the gruesome sentence imposed on all Melokais who have served their purpose, she hears instead a shocking prophecy.

Is the sudden appearance of a mysterious cave creature from the east the trouble the prophecy speaks of? Or is the threat something darker, more evil? And what of the wolves… does the ferocious war with their kind mark the end for Peqkya?

Before Ramya can answer, she and her fearless warriors must first crush a catastrophic rebellion that threatens to destroy her and devastate her beloved nation.

Find Melokai on Goodreads

I’m going to start with the positives, because those are always much nicer to write. I think there are some excellent fantasy concepts in this novel. There are people who are kind of like camels, in that they have humps on their backs. There’s elements such as that which point to quite a vivid imagination and some quite clever world building at the heart of this novel.

It also has some great settings, I have certainly read a matriarchal society before, but not one which coexists in an epic fantasy world with traditional patriarchal societies. What a political environment, how those two societies interact wasn’t as key to the plot as I would have made it but it was certainly an interesting setting to explore.

It’s certainly an entertaining, fast paced read, I read from digital cover to cover in one afternoon and had a good time. However, I might argue that this book is a little too fast? It’s not that the key elements aren’t there. For a multiple POV fantasy we’ve got a pretty good mix of characters the stories of whom do begin to tie together at the end. Those elements are there, they are just missing the connective tissue that would form this into a more coherent work of fiction. It’s a bit like watching an old movie, before they worked out that transitional scenes were a thing. We jump from two characters meeting to them being in love to there being a war happening somewhere completely different in the space of a few pages – it’s a lot to handle.

Also, this is neither a bad nor a good thing where the book is concerned, but worth noting if you’re wanting to read this – there’s a lot of sex in this book, not all of it wholly consensual. If that’s not something you’re comfortable reading then I would definitely skip this one!

As far as books influenced by the popularisation of gritty multiple POV fantasy (I’d love to not blame ASOIAF but…) this isn’t the worst that I’ve read. There are a lot of things I would change but the bones of the book are solid. I’ll definitely be keeping an eye out for Rosalyn in the future, it’ll be exciting to watch her develop as an author.

My rating: 2/5

What say you? Do books need ‘connective tissue’? Let me know in the comments below!

J

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