Book Reviews

Blood Heir (Blood Heir, #1) by Amelie Wen Zhao

blood heirTitle: Blood Heir (Blood Heir, #1)
Author: Amelie Wen Zhao
Rating: ★★★★

This hot debut is the first book in an epic new series about a princess hiding a dark secret and the con man she must trust to clear her name for her father’s murder.

In the Cyrilian Empire, Affinites are reviled. Their varied gifts to control the world around them are unnatural—dangerous. And Anastacya Mikhailov, the crown princess, has a terrifying secret. Her deadly Affinity to blood is her curse and the reason she has lived her life hidden behind palace walls.

When Ana’s father, the emperor, is murdered, her world is shattered. Framed as his killer, Ana must flee the palace to save her life. And to clear her name, she must find her father’s murderer on her own. But the Cyrilia beyond the palace walls is far different from the one she thought she knew. Corruption rules the land, and a greater conspiracy is at work—one that threatens the very balance of her world. And there is only one person corrupt enough to help Ana get to its core: Ramson Quicktongue.

A cunning crime lord of the Cyrilian underworld, Ramson has sinister plans—though he might have met his match in Ana. Because in this story, the princess might be the most dangerous player of all.

I received this ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

The Blood Heir is a compelling story based on oppression, prejudice, and overcoming familial expectations. Ana is known to the world as a blood witch and seen as a monster. Her family even kept her hidden away from the rest of the world until one day she escapes and attempts to prove everyone wrong. Affinites are people who have powers and are condemned to a terrible life or are used as puppets. Seeking revenge for the death of her family, she finds a stranger along the way who is seeking to destroy the same person. But maybe something more evolves out of what they both share.

It is up to us to fight our battles in this world.

As many of you know, there was a lot of controversy surrounding the novel. In my opinion, it was totally uncalled for and I think the author did a great job of depicting the harsh realities of oppressive lives. Did those people even read the book?! If you want to call this “racially insensitive” then please explain to me the mass killing of people in Poland (my mom immigrated from there when it was still under communist rule and it actually wasn’t even a country on a map at one point), or any other example of oppression. It affected every race, not just one. We all know those times were bad for those involved, but the author luckily stayed true to her vision and published the novel. She was unveiling the truth behind oppression, not condoning it. The bullying of people’s free speech needs to stop. This criticism was totally unwarranted. Rant over.

But perhaps all monsters were heroes in their own eyes.

I loved Ramson the world-building, the deception, and the justice that was conducted in the story. The novel was great, but I find myself looking back and not feeling this novel to be super memorable. But I want it to be because I did enjoy reading it.

The Blood Heir was a moving, unpredictable story about the struggles facing people in oppressive countries. Reader who love a slow-burn romance, deception, and a twisted plot will love The Blood Heir.

2 thoughts on “Blood Heir (Blood Heir, #1) by Amelie Wen Zhao”

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