Book Review: The Chameleon with a Sword

the chameleon with a swordTitle: The Chameleon with a Sword

Author: B.L. Logan

Pub. Date: October 1, 2019

Rating: IDK

Protectors of the Day. Life. Loyalists.
A word that slices fear through sixteen-year-old Leena Niran the way her sword does enemies. A people who decided her destiny, but don’t even know she exists.
Protectors of the Night. Death. Traitors.
A word once signifying respect and honor in Prince Mordecai’s homeland. A people synonymous with betrayal because of him.
The Oculan.
The reason life exists peacefully. The sum of Day and Night—two ancient energy forces a king must keep in balance or risk blending life and death in a cataclysmic melee. A risk worth Leena’s life.
Suddenly, a nomadic fencer finds herself wanted. By a government, a king, and a vengeful exiled prince seeking salvation for the illness killing his people. A cure flowing through Leena’s veins.
Leena’s safety becomes the duty of another protector, but her fate is her own. With a bounty on her head, Leena must decide what she’s willing to sacrifice to protect herself, her dreams, her family, her world. The choice will be deadly either way.

This will be a spoiler free review. Quick shout out to Netgalley for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This is either a 2-star read or a 4-star read. I’m super conflicted about this book. It was long, dense and the ending kind of pissed me off. With that being said, I couldn’t put it down, and there were a couple of instances that shocked me – a couple of reveals I didn’t anticipate.

I honestly don’t know how I feel about this book. I don’t. It was confusing. So much happened in the ~560 pages this novel contained, and half of it I had to continuously reread over and over for it to make sense. Like I said, super dense, and for it not to even be resolved at the end…I feel like I wasted the 12 hours – TWELVE HOURS – it took me to read this.

Now, maybe you’re thinking that 12 hours really isn’t a long time. You’re right, it’s not, but I can tell you that at least a quarter of those were spent rereading scenes to try and figure out what was happening. I also needed a map for this world, because for the life of me, I couldn’t figure out the placement of the various places.

I also had no idea going into this book that it wasn’t a pure high fantasy – that modernish/futuristic tech existed. The world was weird, and maybe it was explained in the book – it was – but I still don’t really understand it.

I liked the characters, all imperfect, some were whinier than others, but all wonderfully human. I think that they were probably my favorite part of the book – at least Leena, Aiden, Suki and Zacharia – I found Mordecai and his crew to just be annoying and wanted to skip past his chapters. Leena, who is the main character, survives so much. From an abusive, toxic home life, to being thrust into a world and a journey she wants no part of, to feeling alone and sad and angry constantly and feeling like she can’t trust anyone. Her character arc isn’t perfect, but it’s pretty damn good and impressive. While she could be annoying at times, I did really enjoy her.

This book also seemed to jump around a lot. And maybe it only felt that way due to the kind of weird – but not unreadable – formatting of the eARC. It just felt like I would be reading one scene, and then suddenly there would be a passage of time(?) and we’d be onto another scene. Also, there were moments when I couldn’t figure out how certain characters were interacting in specific ways, because only moments ago they were like, across the room from each other.

Overall, I felt like I was given so much information and I don’t know if it all was relevant. Clearly, it’s been left open for a second book, but Goodreads has no listing for it, and I don’t know if I’m going to be invested enough to read a second book. Especially if it’s as long and dense as this one was. I do think that all this information was included in this book, in case there isn’t a second one, but for how open ended this one was left…I’m just not sure. I think this book could have done with some more editing, and could have been split into two long books, versus this apparent solitary novel.

  • I think having more time with these characters would have been seriously beneficial – and that could have happened with more than one book.
  • I think that with having two longer books, the world could have been expanded more, and maybe it wouldn’t be as densely packed with tons of information.

So much happened in this book, yet I feel like nothing did. Other than a few shocking moments, nothing really makes me want to tell you to go read this. Actually, even the shocking moments don’t make me want to tell you to go read this. It’s not a bad book, it’s just long, dense and so much. I think the author has promise, and the story they created is really cool. I just wish it had been a little bit of a lighter read, and things had been explained better, over a longer period of time. Because having an entire worlds worth of lore/history/rules shoved at me in ~560 pages, I retained none of it. The Chameleon with a Sword is out now, and if you do read this, let me know what you think.

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