Title: All the Truths (Lies & Truths Duets #2) Author: Rina Kent Genre: Dark High School Romance Release Date: 26 March 2020
The truth doesn’t set you free.
Revenge shouldn’t be rushed. It needs to be savored.
Reina ruined my life and it’s only fair I ruin hers back.
Or that was the plan.
That was before she got under my skin and flowed into my blood.
Life as we know it crashes and burns.
All we have left is revenge.
Or is it?
All The Truths is a dark new adult book that contains dubious situations some readers might find offensive and/or triggering. If you’re looking for a hero, you won’t find him in Asher Carson. Please don’t read if any of that bothers you.
All The Truths is the second part of a duet and is NOT standalone.
I am so confused. This is not the Rina Kent I was looking for.
Many years ago, I was playing pretentious and read tons of Albert Camus. Somewhere amongst his books, there was a quote, and I’m paraphrasing here, but it was that a writer only has one story, and they tell it over and over again. Keep in mind Camus was an anarchistic existentialist philosopher who was deeply obsessed with absurdism.
But he has a point. Fiction writers are subconsciously motivated to resolve their psychological issues cathartically. They often do it through repeating themes or recreating situations that leave their characters to face similar deep-rooted trials.
So, what I like about All The Lies is what I enjoyed about Royal Elite School because it is a reused thematic derivative of the earlier series.
The last books in trilogies are always tricky for me; it’s like I’m watching my children leave the nest. The story is all grown up, and now I feel so fulfilled and still somewhat empty at the same time.
The ultimate ending of Aiden and Elsa’s story ticked off all of my boxes, except for some backstory questions with which I’ve been struggling. How did Ethan know to show up at the Meet-Up at that moment? What is the actual heart condition Elsa suffers? I know how it started, but what is it she is at risk for developing–because at first, I thought it was some genetic thing, and then we find out ‘oh-no worse.’ But I don’t understand resulting complications–then again I believe that is by far the last thing I should be cross-examining.
But HOW DID ETHAN KNOW TO GO TO THE MEET-UP THAT DAY?
So right, that is where Steel Princess left off, and Rina doesn’t disappoint with the story continuation. I am attributing my Team Aiden campaign to the POV alternating in SP. But I’m not talking about which Horsemen team, but instead Team Aiden vs. Team Elsa. Twisted Kingdom opened up Aiden King’s black heart, and I felt he had a wealth of character depth–but it served to prove to me that Elsa is a fickle and fairweather girlfriend who I couldn’t support.
Title: Steel Princess (Royal Elite Book #2) Author: Rina Kent Genre: Dark Bully High School Romance Release Date:December 12, 2019
I hate everything and everyone now.
Rina broke me again, and I want nothing more now than my cat, Xanax, and a panic room.
Deviant King is a mind screw of grand proportion full of little hints and easter eggs enough to make one bedlamite. The story is chockablock of broken characters who are far beyond repair; every damn one of them has more baggage than the Louis Vuitton outlet store. All the females are needy for love and affection but trade any hope for good things so they can live off the interest of the lies they tell themselves about the great future the could have if only they spring there trap. —Note to Elsa, Kim, Silvers, and Blair: You ARE your cage.
The only character that isn’t an A-hole of monstrous proportions is Uncle Jaxon. But don’t worry because in Steel Princess Rina breaks him too.
Both books have Elsa and Aiden considering the concepts of intuition and inevitability as their opening chapter. We return to philosophy, and Sartre: Elsa and Aiden both struggles with the ultimate existential crisis: are they the player or the game? In Steel Princess, there are references throughout Aiden’s POVs of his worldview; he’s the player; manipulation won’t work on him anymore. He mastered himself in the darkness of his childhood, nursing himself upon the suffering and pain forced upon him to create a self-possessed demon without weakness — a villain entirely in control of his victim.
But regardless of all Aiden’s encouragement, he hasn’t been able to get Elsa to stop being the game and to embrace her power. Elsa spent all of Deviant King saying bullies shouldn’t be understood. Rina has created her character with enough subconscious awareness to know that her amnesia, her scar, and her submissiveness are the seal on her Pandora’s box, and the key to it is to look into the abyss.
So in book two, our Steel Princess is born upon the sacrificial stone of Deviant King’s poolside cliffhanger; the revelation has finally come to Elsa that she needs to remover herself from the Kings’ gameboard. But it hasn’t occurred to her that all her research on strategy and attack is absurd in the light that she refuses to recognize what she controls. She is focused on the smallest most inconsequential parts of the larger picture and settles for crumbs when she owns the bakery.
This book is a rabbit hole of epiphany and discovery; admissions, confessions, and betrayals unloaded automatic assault weapon style and land like bombs. But the more you learn, the more you realize that you know nothing at all. For all of Rina Kent’s unbundling of backstory explaining what ingredients went into creating present-day Elsa and Aiden, we can’t begin to guess how two monsters will build their twisted kingdom. The last few pages only murky the waters further. I hate it. I hate how badly I want more. I want a nap.
Ali: Tell me a secret about the last person you had sex with or, Tell me a lie you’ve told your best friend. Elsa: I told my best friend that I’m fine. Cole: I told my best friend that it doesn’t matter.
Ali: Rina, I’m so excited that you were agreeable to a short interview. I know you have a lot going on with pre-release. Rina: My pleasure! Happy to be here.
Ali: This is the second novel in the Royal Elite School series; how happy are you with the reception of the first book in the trilogy Deviant King? Rina: To be honest, I was blown away by all the love Deviant King received. I was always a rebel who wrote what I connected with the most. I’m so happy that many readers love my words, the characters, and the worlds I create. I can’t find the words to describe how much that means to me and my creative process.
Ali: Cruel King and Deviant King reviewers have gone bonkers for Levi and the Horseman; what do you five think about becoming book boyfriends Ronan: Boyfriend? Me? Any time, chéri *winks* Xander: Any time, love *dimpled smile* Levi: I’m only Astrid’s boyfriend. Aiden: Who gave you permission to talk to me?
Ali: Which one of you thinks they are the best book boyfriend? And Rina, you’ve said that Ronan is your cinnamon roll — does he know this? Ronan: Bien sûre que moi! Girls love me. Okay, it might have to do with what will be written on my gravestone. I use it well. Xander: Me. Because dimples. Think on that, ladies.
Ali: Astrid and Elsa, how does it make you feel when the King men reduce you down to chess pieces? Have you ever mentally, or aloud, demoted either of them or the Horsemen to pawns when they get out of hand.