Monday, April 3, 2017

Review: Garden of Thorns by Amber Mitchell

Garden of Thorns by Amber Mitchell
Garden of Thorns
by Amber Mitchell
March 6, 2017
368 pages

Goodreads Summary:
After seven grueling years of captivity in the Garden—a burlesque troupe of slave girls—sixteen-year-old Rose finds an opportunity to escape during a performance for the emperor. But the hostage she randomly chose from the crowd to aid her isn’t one of the emperor’s men—not anymore. He’s the former heir to the throne, who is now leading a rebellion against it.

Rayce is a wanted man and dangerously charismatic, the worst person for Rose to get involved with, no matter what his smile promises. But he assumes Rose’s attempt to take him hostage is part of a plot to crush the rebellion, so he takes her as his hostage. Now Rose must prove where her loyalties lie, and she offers Rayce a deal—if he helps her rescue the other girls, she’ll tell him all the Garden’s secrets.

Except the one secret she’s kept for seven years that she’ll take to her grave if she must.



It's amazing how much you can enjoy a book going into it blind. This was my case with Garden of Thorns. I'd only read the synopsis once even though I have a habit of dissecting book summaries before reading the actual book. Garden of Thorns turned out be such a fantastic and gripping read.

Ms. Mitchell does a great job detailing the harsh condition and abuse the girls suffer in the hands of the Gardener. Their treatment is hard to swallow but the unity born from it is priceless. The strong sense of family values really shines through in the book whether it was between the girls in the Garden or with the people involved in the rebellion. No one gets left behind.

Rose's struggles were authentic. After her long period in captivity and all that she's endured in the Garden it's understandable she would have some trust issues. However, at times I did find it to be too repetitive. The back and forth she does frustrated me. A significant loss resulted from her lack of confidence and it caused her and the rebellion a great deal. She does learn from it and I was glad to see her break out of the fears holding her back.

I enjoyed the romance between Rayce and Rose. It was a slow burn full of hesitation and uncertainty. The two both had to put their duties before their personal wants but it didn't stop them from bonding. I loved the kitchen scene between them. (Rayce's love for cooking was the best!) It was sweet but also bitter considering they had their obligations to think of. I thought the slight twist was really well-incorporated into the plot. There's more to Rose and Rayce than Flower and rebel leader.

Garden of Thorns appears to be a standalone but I could see a sequel happening. I'd definitely like to revisit the rebellion and see how the characters are faring. Fingers crossed for more and count me in if/when the next book comes out.

4 Cats
*I received an eARC of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinion are my own and not affected in any way.


  1. Great review. I thought this was an enjoyable read and like you, I went into it not really knowing what I was going to get. The whole Garden aspect was so unsettling.

    1. Thanks! The Garden was so disturbing I couldn't wait to see it go down! And Shears gives me the shivers ahh...


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