Book Reviews - Adrianne

REVIEW: The Kingdom by Jess Rothenberg

The Kingdom

Hellooo lovelies! Happy Saturday. I hope everything’s been going well in your lives 🙂 I feel like I’ve been a little M.I.A. as far as content/motivation these days. I’ve been in a bit of a reading slump and have been spending my nights in front of a movie screen (well…a projector in a friend’s house at least) instead of with my nose in a book. Maybe I’ll post some reviews/thoughts about the movies I’ve watched! With all of that being said I have finished one book so far this month and that is The Kingdom by Jess Rothenberg.


Welcome to the Kingdom… where ‘Happily Ever After’ isn’t just a promise, but a rule.

Glimmering like a jewel behind its gateway, The Kingdom is an immersive fantasy theme park where guests soar on virtual dragons, castles loom like giants, and bioengineered species–formerly extinct–roam free.

Ana is one of seven Fantasists, beautiful “princesses” engineered to make dreams come true. When she meets park employee Owen, Ana begins to experience emotions beyond her programming including, for the first time… love.

But the fairytale becomes a nightmare when Ana is accused of murdering Owen, igniting the trial of the century. Through courtroom testimony, interviews, and Ana’s memories of Owen, emerges a tale of love, lies, and cruelty–and what it truly means to be human.


This’ll probably be a bit of a short review, I don’t have many complaints. I think I’ve mentioned that I don’t really waste time reading books I feel like I won’t like haha. On that note, this was such a fun read! It’s one of those stories that’s told using a variety of different things, in this case, court transcripts, interviews, surveillance footage, and then through the eyes of our MC, Ana. I love when stories use different types of…media (I guess that’s the right word) to tell the story, it breaks of the monotony of paragraph after paragraph and makes the book fly by!

Back to our main character. Ana is what some may say, an unreliable narrator. Why do I say that? Because like the synopsis says, Ana is a “Fantasist,” or what I take to be an android. She’s programmed to think and feel a certain way…soooo who’s to say she hasn’t been reprogrammed or tampered with? Maybe her memories aren’t really her own?? It’s all part of the mystery, but on top of that I just find Ana to be a very interesting character and the way she sees her….Kingdom as well as the world outside. I also love Ana’s “sisters.” They’re each very unique, as far as princesses go.

Overall the vibe of the story was like…murder mystery meets Disneyland! Which was unique and really fun. The chapters weren’t super long and were often broken up by the transcripts I mentioned earlier so it felt like I was flying through this thing, which…in a reading slump felt really nice. It was a very fun ride! I think I would recommend this to people who’ve read Lifel1k3 or Dev1at3 by Jay Kristoff. The fun I had reading The Kingdom was comparable to the fun I had reading Lifel1k3, plus…you know robots and androids.


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