Dividing Eden by Joelle Charbonneau Review

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?”

    Dividing Eden by Joelle Charbonneau (Man, that’s a long name to write) is a solid, yet a bit disappointing start to a series. It just feels so standard especially with a premise that is a bit different from other trials-like novels.

    I don’t recall a novel that pits twins against one another in a Hunger Games-like setting. Carys and Andreus were competent protagonists that you kind of cared about it. Carys is headstrong, confident, yet uses a sort of drug to keep herself together which added a nice twist to standard heroines. Although, her character arc fell a bit flat and predictable. She just ended up being another Katniss-like protagonist which was dissappointing. Andreus is a blue collar worker and innovative and I found him to be the more compelling of the two and his character arc was a nice turn, although a bit predictable about halfway through the book. Some of his best moments came from when he had to make a difficult decision which is what drives his character arc. The writing for them was still good and I cared for one of them by the end. 

   The supporting characters were fairly standard. You have the love interest (who develops exactly how I thought she would), the wicked council of elders, etc. It feels as if Charbonneau was just checking a list of a standard young adult novel. The plot was predictable, although the trials themselves were fairly interesting and are the highlights of the novel. Outside of a few events, it does tend to drag a bit in between and I felt there was some unnecessary drama that could have been avoided. 

   I just feel that the novel could have been a lot better and more fleshed, but it ended up turning into a solid, but run of the mill opening novel. While the twins were well-written, Carys fell a bit flat in terms of her arc. The supporting characters were fairly stock and the plot was quite predictable. The ending does leave the series at an interesting place and kept me interested for future books. Still, it is still worth reading, just not buying it.

Rating: Check it out



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