Victor is great, Sarah is a nightmare...
By The Gardener Here
What a fun storyline this concept is! The story was engaging, and allowed me to imagine being there in the woods with the characters.
King Victor was written in an interesting and easy to like, although initially misunderstood, fashion. He was bold, brave, thoughtful, thorough, caring, affectionate, and handsome, a man who seemed to do only that which his life experience had taught him was right and good. Where Sarah was concerned he was humble, willing to learn, willing to teach, and willing to do anything in his power to bring her happiness.
Sarah, on the other hand, was just the opposite of Victor, and was arrogant, irrational, frequently self centered (although she thought of herself in the opposite light), illogical, demanding whiny, and nearly always focused on the wrong goal. She seemed unable to see past her own hyper focused selfish interests while consistently making efforts to convince herself she was acting selflessly, and rationally.
Victor was kind and thoughtful towards her yet she always pushed him away, operating under the delusional premise that she was a strong woman, making the right choices for her and those around her. Reality showed otherwise.
In the first volume of this series Sarah was presented as an emotionally scarred woman determined to locate her missing sister in a land vastly different from her own comfort zone, and behaved accordingly. In this volume however, Sarah’s behavior was stridently different from the first volume, making the storytelling feel disjointed, and counterproductive. Sarah’s inabilities to adjust to her surroundings and Victor’s many kindnesses toward her present her as a selfish, uneducated shrew with few redeeming qualities. Her tiresome rants about how she would not allow Victor to mistreat her were shrill, and entirely unnecessary because he had only ever treated her thoughtfully since their marriage. It is as though she is wholly incapable of seeing the truth before her because she is so imprisioned in her preconceived, and false, beliefs of men, marriage, and love, and what it takes to be a stron and truly, intrinsically happy woman. She questions weather she will ever find a loving relationship like her sisters, yet she consistently pushes away that love when it is repeatedly given to her.
Truly strong women, women who are natural leaders, women who instinctively know how to embrace goodness and love in all its forms, never have to convince themselves of their strength in the tiresome ways Sarah rants about. Women like Sarah are trying to claim a strength which cannot be forced through such counterfeit measures as the ones she employs.
Sadly, this new and unpleasant presentation of Sarah ruined what was otherwise an enthralling and delightful storyline to participate in.
Victor, and the original story get five stars. Sarah gets none.
It would be fun to read this story again, with Sarah written better, yet it is doubtful that will happen. How sad...