Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Book Review: Gameboard of the Gods by Richelle Mead

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.

I had high hopes for this book, the blurb sounds amazing and Richelle Mead is one of my favourite authors of all time. She has a way of writing male characters that I fall in love with and female characters that I want to be like. In many ways this is exactly what I got from Gameboard of the Gods, the idea is amazing and the characters very likeable yet there was just something missing for me and I didn’t like this at much as I wanted to.

The world building and storyline is strong which is exactly what I would expect from someone like Mead. This is an awesome idea and there were moments that really came alive for me. Unfortunately there were a few times, especially in the beginning where I wasn’t really sure what was going on. There was so much to take in and I found myself a little confused but settled in after a while.

I really loved the characters. Mae is strong, independent and completely kickass. I admired her strength and courage. She was not just muscle she was also caring and at times considerate and I like the journey she is beginning to take. I didn’t really want to love Justin because there are aspects of him that I didn’t like but I just couldn’t help myself. He was completely adorable and I just wanted to smooch him.

I was unsure of the romance and I think that despite loving Justin I don’t know if I like him as the love interest. I failed to see the chemistry that Mead is normally so good at and it was a big disappointment.

Another issue was the length, I thought it was just far too long and that there was maybe something’s that just were not needed. It started so well but eventually felt like a bit of a chore and I felt like it could have been shorter.

This is still a good book it is just not as good as I think this author can deliver. I will still  read the next book in the series and I still think there is a lot to like here. This is a strong first book in what looks to be an interesting series. 

3 stars

Published June 4th 2013 by Dutton Adult.  A free copy was provided for review.  Images courtesy of Goodreads.
Review by Kate Phillips



  1. I had such high hopes for Gameboard of the Gods for the same reason as you - I adore RM's books, normally. I didn't really connect with this one though :(

    Great review.

    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

  2. Sorry to hear you weren't crazy about it. I'm still really looking forward to read this, though!

  3. I really liked Mae but didn't care for Justin. And I definitely didn't want them together. There were some elements of this story that I enjoyed but I'm not sure that it was enough for me to continue the series. I hope you enjoy the sequel more than you did this one. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

    Cat @ A2H

  4. I loved Vampire Academy so much that I'm not sure if I'll be able to get behind Richelle Mead as an adult author. I've tried to read adult books by YA authors before and it never seems to work out as well for me. But I will definitely try this one anyway!

    -Taylor @ Reading is the Thing

  5. Hmmm I've tired to read adult books by YA authors before, and I can never seem to get into them. I loved the VA series though, so we'll see how it works out!

    -Taylor @ Reading is the Thing

  6. 3 stars to Gameboard of the Gods! looking forwards to some great reviews on your blog!

  7. Oh, hadn't seen this cover! I had a lot of confusion with the worldbuilding but luckily the engaging characters of Mae and Justin pulled me through and insured that I'll be returning for book 2.

  8. I used this one for a WOW a few weeks ago -- all it took was "In a futuristic world nearly destroyed by religious extremists..." for me to want to read it! This will be my first by this author though & I'm really looking forward to it:)


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