on June 1, 2020
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy & Magic, Romance
Source: eARC from Publisher
Princess Kalista has known her role from birth. She's spent her entire life preparing to be the socialite wife of a prince from a peaceful kingdom. But on her big day, she is shocked when she is instead forced to marry the warrior prince of a cursed land, who is as cold as the wintry kingdom he'll one day rule.
Carson has a throne no princess wants to share with him. An immortal beast ravages their land, and he’ll do anything to stop it, even marry a complete stranger on the day she was supposed to wed her betrothed. Let her hate him for it, but Kalista is his only hope for peace.
Kalista knows she’s just a pawn on the chessboard of politics, but now she’s expected to kill an unstoppable creature because of some legend about her bloodline that Carson believes as truth. He trains her how to fight, and when lessons in swordplay lead to lessons in love, her destiny puts more than just her life at risk.
How far is she willing to go to save the prince she never wanted…but can’t imagine living without?
Live Like Legends is a standalone young adult fantasy romance by Kate Cornell. This book is blurbed as being perfect for fans of Lindsay Duga’s Kiss of the Royal and Sara Wolf’s Bring Me Their Hearts series, which excited me to no end because those are some of my all time favorite fantasy romances. Entangled Teen does some of the best fantasy romances in my opinion. They always have the perfect recipe for a book that I just can’t seem to put down. I loved Live Like Legends, I thought it had a great premise, wonderful characters, and a fantastic romance that was really interesting.
The romance was so interesting in this story because there was an element that I have not read before in young adult fantasies, but one that I feel like should come up much more often than it has. Because our main character, Princess Kalista is married off to a Prince from a foreign kingdom, it would stand to reason that such foreign kingdom’s would not always speak the same language. Kalista and her betrothed Prince Carson do not speak the same language in more ways than one. First off, they literally do speak different languages. I loved this, and like I said earlier, I can’t believe this doesn’t come up more often, but they also are very different individuals. I loved watching their interactions and watching them try to learn to communicate with one another. It was an additional element to the story that really helped me connect with each of the characters in a new way. It also helped that Kalista has trained her entire life to be betrothed to someone else, but she is refreshingly realistic about her expectations of love. It made the connection and feelings that grew between her and Carson so much more satisfying. I also loved how fierce she became. She certainly had her fair share of whiny moments, but I don’t fault her for that. It felt more genuine honestly, I would have a whiny moment…or two…if I found myself in a situation even way less scary than hers.
The plot of Live Like Legends was also great. While I did have a few moments of confusion throughout the story (mostly at the beginning) I do feel like almost all of my questions were answered by the end. I fell into the story early on, and once I got my groove I devoured this novel. There are monsters, prophecies and curses to deal with. There was never a dull moment in the novel. Some parts were action packed and others were very character development driven, and honestly I loved both aspects of the story equally. While Kalista and Carson are our main characters, and I adored both of them, there are also some other great secondary characters that I fell in love with. My favorite was Emmett, who among other things, acted as a tutor for Kalista and interpreter between her and Carson. He was super snarky and sarcastic and the perfect amount of comic relief.
Bottom line: If you are looking for a fantasy standalone that is romance heavy, then look no further than Live Like Legends. Live Like Legends is an impressive debut from author Kate Cornell. I can’t wait to read her next novel!
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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2020 New Release Challenge
- Flights of Fantasy Reading Challenge 2020