Armored (The Té-trad Tale, #1) - M.A. Wilder Full review also posted here on TotalTeenFiction

Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

I was sent this copy by the author to review and thought the premise sounded interesting. Amored follows Beckit who discovers the mystery guy who has appeared throughout her life is actually a knight assigned to protect her who then sweeps her off to his homeland.

I'll start of by warning you that I didn't like this book, which is going to be reflected in this review. I'm always sad to say that, but this just wasn't an enjoyable read for me. Firstly, there seems to be an awful lot going on. The book is set in a world with knights from another planet, vampires, banshees, werewolves, magic and fairy dust. I never quite settled into that world and it seemed like there was just too much to get my head around. Secondly, I was never quite sure why things were happening, and Beckit just seemed happy enough to go along with it all. I just didn't get that sense of purpose to really let me get invested in the story.

I thought Beckit had some potential as a character. She doesn't feel like she fits in because of her shape and size, and has a great realtionship with her best friend Meka with the two of them obsessing over their favourite werewolf TV show. I thought that was something a lot of people would relate to (I make TV show references with my friends all the time). But even those little references weren't enough to win me round in the end.

One of the main things that let the story down for me was Aaron. He's introduced as this sort of stalker figure who constantly pops up in Beckit's life, and yet this doesn't seem to put her off in any way which was just weird. It would totally creep me out having a weird guy show up everywhere I went, and the fact she didn't seem in the slightest bit unnerved put me off. Then there was the fact that throughout the book I felt I knew absolutely nothing about him, other than the fact he was assigned to protect Beckit. If I was going to form any kind of connection with him as a character, I needed to actually get to know him and I didn't.

Then there's the romance element Amored which didn't win me over at all. Like I said, I felt nothing for Aaron and then there was the fact that I felt zero chemistry between him and Beckit. Yet Beckit has this major crush on him and then they start snogging each other's faces off when they barely know each other. It was all just a bit strange to me. Only it got worse when we got to the sex scene. I don't want to spoil it but I always mention if there's explicit content anyway and there was in this book. And it was so, so awkward to read. It felt like a public service announcement for teenage sex (quote from the book: "Is sex really this amazing? Of course it is, her brain whispered. When it's with the right person!").

That moves me on to the writing which was probably one of the things that made it difficult to get through this book. It was just a bit clunky for me and I would find myself having to skim over bits that didn't fit or correct them in my head. In the story Aaron is an "erone" and Beckit is his "poh iverstant" which lead to sentences such as: "The poh iverstant and the erone hurried to their next destination...". I just found it so frustrating when they were referred to with these titles instead of their names. If they were characters we hadn't yet been introduced to then I would maybe understand that formality, but when you knew who they were it was just off-putting. It felt very strange seeing Beckit constantly referred to as "the human" as well. Amored is written in third person and occasionally the perspective would switch around a bit. I much preferred it when it was written from Beckit's POV.

There were also cases of strange phrasing being used, for example when H2O was used in place of the word water. I think I actually groaned at that one, considering the context was somebody having a shower. My final problem was the youth speak and pop culture references that were crammed in. "OMG" was used far too often for my liking and I couldn't help but cringe at "homegirl" and "FML" being used.

I always try and explain why I didn't like a book because it can be a very personal thing, and the things that bothered me may not bother other people at all. In the end I just found it very difficult to get through. I think if I was the kind of person who could just stop and not finish a book then this would've been one I would have moved on from, because I knew about halfway through that it just wasn't for me. But I have to finish things! And so I ploughed on to the end and sadly it didn't get any better.

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