Book Review: The Scorpion Rules by Erin Bow

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Book Review: The Scorpion Rules by Erin BowThe Scorpion Rules Published by Margaret K. McElderry Books on September 22, 2015
Genres: Dystopian
Pages: 384
Format: ARC

The world is at peace, said the Utterances. And really, if the odd princess has a hard day, is that too much to ask?
Greta is a duchess and crown princess—and a hostage to peace. This is how the game is played: if you want to rule, you must give one of your children as a hostage. Go to war and your hostage dies.
Greta will be free if she can survive until her eighteenth birthday. Until then she lives in the Precepture school with the daughters and sons of the world’s leaders. Like them, she is taught to obey the machines that control their lives. Like them, she is prepared to die with dignity, if she must. But everything changes when a new hostage arrives. Elián is a boy who refuses to play by the rules, a boy who defies everything Greta has ever been taught. And he opens Greta’s eyes to the brutality of the system they live under—and to her own power.
As Greta and Elián watch their nations tip closer to war, Greta becomes a target in a new kind of game. A game that will end up killing them both—unless she can find a way to break all the rules.

(Last Updated On: November 1, 2021)
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The Scorpion Rules had been on my book radar since I first heard about it. I mean, it sounds incredibly awesome! That synopsis completely drew me in and even that tagline was killer… “One wrong move could kill you”.

The story follows Greta, a 17-year-old who is a Child of Peace. Her parents are royal, and she’s a hostage. If her parents get into war with another country or territory in this future, then she will be killed automatically. She’s lost friends from her school in the past because of this rule. It’s just the way that life is now. People aren’t even allowed to rule without having a child to turn over to the hostages.
I really liked the start of this story. It was very strong and it was headed in a very good direction. I instantly loved all the characters-especially Sidney. I liked Elian even more when he came along. He was the troublemaker, I mean, what’s not to love? Plus he had the same accent as Sidney. However, after a while, things got kind of confusing and I didn’t quite know what was happening.
I did love all the characters, don’t get me wrong, but at about 50% the story was just too much. I had been expecting Elian and Greta to run away because that kept being hinted at, though that’s not what happened. Also, there ended up being a random love triangle which I didn’t see coming. I had just been shipping two of the characters so hard and ended up being disappointed because I guess I always end up shipping the one love interest that is never chosen.
Despite the confusion, I will probably pick up book two to give it a chance and see where it goes.

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  1. Hello! Wonderful review, Krystianna!
    I've been interested in this one since I first heard about it. The premise sounds so cool and unique.
    I'm glad that you ended up liking the characters, because for me, not liking the characters in a book ruins the whole thing for me.
    I'm still really excited to read this one when it comes out and see what I think.

  2. Oh, no a random love triangle, ehh interesting. I have a copy of this one but have been on the fence about starting it. Great review 🙂

    Ashley @The Quiet Concert

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