NOTE: I was given this book to review by the author, Gwynneth White.
I never thought that this review would be so difficult to write. I don't even know where to begin, or how to rate the novel. I hope I get some insight as the words appear on the screen. At any rate, just please don't think I'm being hateful or anything. I'm just being honest.
Firstly, let me say that I had great expectations about Pledged. So great in fact, that when I started reading it, they came crushing down on me. Not cool, I know, but that's what usually happens when a book doesn't turn out to be what you've thought it would be.
Secondly, the world building and story telling sort of disappointed me. I was expecting a masterpiece, where I'd be enveloped in the book world as if it were my own reality. That I'd feel the wind, the heat of the desert, the pain of the characters. Sadly, It didn't turn out to be that way. The descriptions felt distant to me, and I couldn't get submerged no matter how hard I tried.
Thirdly, the story plot revolved around prophesies and curses that hardly made sense to me. I tried to understand what it was all about, but it just didn't make sense. And no, it wasn't some complicated mystery or something. It just logically didn't make sense.
In fourth place, I thought that the soul mate concept that we were introduced to in the summary, would be developed as a part of a grander scheme. But it wasn't. IT was the grand scheme. And it felt a bit silly to me that generation upon generation of fictional characters would depend on a concept that none of them actually considered important. Trust me, I do believe in love at first sight, but what I read here wasn't it. It was pushed to appear so, but it actually wasn't.
Fifth, the characters did not really impress me. Not even one of them grabbed my attention. They were all sort of the same, as if moulded in the same mould. Their dialogues felt unrealistic, their fears and stubbornness were completely unnecessary, and they never seemed to follow through with their decisions (unless those decisions were very stupid - then they'd stick to them).
And still, with all that said, after the 50-60% of the novel, I sort of liked it. I was even disappointed that it ended where it did. Stupid, stupid trilogies! Anyway, that's all I've got to say.
I'd recommend this book to all those who love a slow read, where there's more telling than showing and more thinking than doing.