Despite her obvious lack of magical talent, nineteen year old Moira Bellamie apprentices with the Gendarmerie Magique, the magical police. She puts all her effort into solving a burglary at the National Museum where antique weapons have been stolen, to keep the hard won job. Falling for her partner Duidus wasn't part of the plan. When more and more people are murdered with one of the stolen weapons, Moira must tame uncontrollable magic, or the people she cares for will die, her partner first and foremost.
"Here you've got it black on yellow. I am handicapped. I do not like to be favored, but I will get hired."
Madame de Frees held out her hands defensively. "I will make a copy and add it to my report."
"That's not enough. For all my life, I never wanted anything else but to join the Gendarmerie Magique."
- Katharina Gerlach, Swordplay
Thanks to Katharina Gerlach for providing me with a copy of this book!
Do you know that feeling, when you receive a book in the mail and have good expectations about it because you read an awesome synopsis? Maybe you didn't, but I certainly did. It sounded so awesome, something like I've never read before. Fantasy combined with a typical murder-mystery. Turns out, Swordplay does not even come close to being a fantasy, and even less to YA.
From characters to the actual plot, I didn't find anything that could hold my interest. There was depth missing in every character, and talking about them: sometimes it felt like some were just thrown in there for no particular reason. It made everything even more confusing. Just like the characters, several storylines seemed to be thrown in and didn't connect in any way, leaving me unsatisfied with the end. Nothing came across as realistic. At times I had to remind myself that Moira was actually nineteen, and that Druidus wasn't a five-year-old. This leads me to the romance, and it isn't something I'd ship. It feels way too forced, and Swordplay could have been a way better novel, if it hadn't been for the unbelievability of everything.
The writing style is in my opinion the best thing out of the entire book, only there has to be another issue. While reading, I constantly asked myself why in the world was this written in the third-person view, when some of her thoughts were written in first-person in Italic? This didn't make any sense, especially when her other thoughts were just in third-view again.
The pace usually does wonders to book, if there was a pace to be found. In the end, I had to put all of my effort into finishing this book. Despite its short length, Swordplay definitely wasn't a book I enjoyed, and I'm really sad to have written such a negative review on a book I thought I'd love.