Gameboard of the Gods (Age of X #1)by Richelle Mead
Featured in Alyssa's blog : AC Reads.
In a futuristic world nearly destroyed by religious extremists, Justin March lives in exile after failing in his job as an investigator of religious groups and supernatural claims. But Justin is given a second chance when Mae Koskinen comes to bring him back to the Republic of United North America (RUNA). Raised in an aristocratic caste, Mae is now a member of the military’s most elite and terrifying tier, a soldier with enhanced reflexes and skills.
When Justin and Mae are assigned to work together to solve a string of ritualistic murders, they soon realize that their discoveries have exposed them to terrible danger. As their investigation races forward, unknown enemies and powers greater than they can imagine are gathering in the shadows, ready to reclaim the world in which humans are merely game pieces on their board.
Gameboard of the Gods, the first installment of Richelle Mead’s Age of Xseries, will have all the elements that have made her YA Vampire Academy and Bloodlines series such megasuccesses: sexy, irresistible characters; romantic and mythological intrigue; and relentless action and suspense.
I have a confession: Mead can do no wrong. At least in my opinion. I went in to it knowing nothing but the title and author, and since I have all the trust in the world in the author, it was the absolutely write thing for me to do.
This one has everything I love about her books, the snarky humor, sexyness and amazing characters.
It is very ambitious though, the world building is mind-boggling. She thought of everything from religion to education, technology.. (told yah, mind-boggling) Sometimes is a little too much, it is so detailed that the reader forgets that the plot line is around a murder and not just following characters around to see what they will do next.
The characters are amazing, character faults and all. March is the drunk, womanizer, genius guy that I would probably hate in real life, but because is a book, we get to understand and love him, see what he thinks and understand how his mind works. Mae is shown as this perfect porcelain doll, but soon enough, there are cracks everywhere. The side characters are amazing, I just loved Tessa!
The character development is just so well done, the reader really does get to see where they are coming from and why they make certain decisions, without being to much. I say that because as much as Mead gave the reader a deep understanding of her characters, she never made them predictable. Their interaction was also a thing of beauty! And the dialog is better than ever.
The plot and pacing is where it gets tricky to talk about. I love the way Mead writes, showing rather than telling, but this book just has a lot of information and a lot of character development, so I would say that the reader needs patience. The pacing is not as fast as I would like, but still there are no snails involved.
The plot is definitely back sit on this one, and sometimes it gets forgotten in the middle of all the other things. It is almost like the author just needed an excuse to group this characters together and really build the story from there. This is not to say the story lacks structure, because it really does not.
As for the romance, I would't say is really a romance yet. There is definitely sexual tension lacing all of it, there was also a lot of steamy moments. They both look like they want to be together, but you know, feelings and reasons. Won't say any more about it.
What I would say if you asked me if you should read this?
If you never read anything from Richelle Mead, try Vampire Academy or Georgina Kinkaid, if you liked that you will probably like this.
Already a Succubus fan? Have a little patience and an open mind, chances are you are going to fall in love with this new set of characters.