Drat! Don’t you simply hate it that Goodreads still hasn’t incorporated 1/2 stars into its ratings system?
Anyway, this book is more of 2 1/2 stars for me as opposed to 3 stars. The problem with this volume is the introduction of yet another male character. There is already too many characters with storylines that don’t necessarily seem to be going anywhere. Most of the men appear to be in love with Saiunkoku which is all fine and dandy, but she is really oblivious to all of their attention. I still haven’t got a sense from of her if she prefers Emperor Ryuki or her faithful companion/servant Seiran. All she seems to care about is passing the civil servants exam. Sure, it’s great for a woman to have career goals but her portrayal seems to be one note by this point and dare I say, boring.
Where’s the conflict? Emotional angst? Give me something to root for besides a passing grade on an entrance exam.
The story has all of the right elements just needs better pacing. Let’s just hope the storyline in book 6 is much better soon…