Review:: Descendants by Rae Else

There are lots of stories about the children of gods. But what about those cursed by the gods, and their descendants…

El, a seventeen-year-old has inherited an ancient and deadly power. She loses control of it, causing a horrific accident, and becomes the prey of a secret organisation, known as the Order.

Forced from her family and home, she hides in plain sight amidst the crowds of London, and is thrust into a world she never knew existed; one full of arete: beings with extraordinary powers like hers.

Arete are beings that can trace their lineage and powers from ancient Greece. They do not claim their inheritance comes from the gods, rather legend says they are descended from cursed beings, such as Medusa.

At the heart of their world is the kerykeion, the symbol that protects them from the humans and the humans from them. El is trapped between two factions, one that has built an empire around the kerykeion and another that is determined to bring it down.

As she is drawn deeper into the conflict, the only way to find the truth is to take matters into her own hands, and the line between friend and foe becomes dangerously blurred. (via Goodreads)

I received an eARC of Descendants from the author in exchange for an honest review.

I would like to give trigger warnings for a suicide attempt in the first few pages, as well as a ton of gaslighting and manipulation throughout the novel. Please be careful if these are issues for you.

Descendants could easily be compared to series’ like Percy Jackson and the Olympians, but with slightly lower stakes for the world and much higher personal ones.

I struggled to write this review because the worldbuilding was cool, and I think I could have really liked it, but something about it fell flat for me. I did love the romance build up, though the gaslighting that went on throughout was not great.

I would have loved to see El learn more about how the Order’s world worked before she started trying to destroy it, or to have gone further undercover.

Overall this was a three star read for me. You can pick up a copy on Amazon!

three stars

Disclaimer: All links to Indiebound and Amazon are affiliate links, which means that if you buy through those links, I will make a small amount of money off of it.

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