Thursday, October 18, 2012

Garden of Madness by Tracy L. Highley

Tia was forced into marriage at a young age, in the way many princesses are. Even being the daughter of the powerful king Nebuchadnezzar didn't change that. But when her husband dies, she finds a new freedom. Freedom is never free, however, and Tia soon learns the price. When she discovers a brutally murdered body on the palace grounds, she seeks to discover the killer. The problem lies within her lingering suspicion that she earnestly hopes is not true.

Meanwhile, other forces seek to crumble the powers set in the palace. With the king in his wild, animal-like state, the women who rule the throne are especially vulnerable. With Tia's husband recently deceased, her mother seek to quickly unite with another kingdom. While she seeks to avoid this and all costs, and to unveil the mysteries of the palace, she begins to wonder if she herself is not slipping in the footsteps of her father into the garden of madness.

I found that I really liked aspects of this book, but I didn't really care much for the story as a whole. First, for a historical fiction novel, I don't feel like the book really captured the setting. There wasn't much culture going on, and despite the fact that Tia worshiped the Babylonian gods, the book made to attempt to explain the religion at any length, but rather vaguely brushed the topic.

While I liked most of the characters, I was not a huge fan of the main character herself. This really disappoints me in books. Tia seemed too weak and full of pride. As Tia started to feel insane, the book just gave me a headache as well. I actually appreciated this in how well the character's emotions came through, but with no "wow" ending, it didn't seem worth it.

I received a free copy of this book from Booksneeze, in exchange for my honest review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

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