My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is not an Anastasia retelling. It is inspired by Anastasia those are two very different things and I don’t want people to be misled before going into the book and have it negatively affect their opinion. If it was retelling we would’ve met Anastasia as a small child and progressed through the book until we finally saw her entire family murdered. That is more or less where history ends because despite the research no one truly knows what happened to Anastasia. Many believe that she died that day with her family, but those optimistic few take it upon themselves to create a happier story for her.
Heart of iron is a continuation of the lost princesses story. It is a what if. What if she escaped that day? What if she was picked up by a group of space pirates and found her family there? It is a unique way to take the story of Anastasia and continue it The way that the author hopes the real story may have ended (other than the fact that this is science fiction and to my knowledge the Romanovs didn’t own a spaceship.)
We enter a world in which we never expected Anastasia to find her home. Going into the book knowing that it is inspired by Anastasia – no one is going to be surprised by who the lost Princess is. That’s not the point of the story.
Instead, we delve into a sci-fi world populated by rogues, rebels, and royalty. I felt that the idea of the book is much more intriguing than the final product ending up being. Even though I really enjoyed the story, I wasn’t as invested as I should have been.
I cared more about Robb and Jax, than I did about the main character Ana or her best friend Di. I liked them, but I wish they were developed more. I think that would have helped me form a connection with them.
The main arc of the story plays out over the course of the novel and felt like it could have easily been a stand-alone. Instead, there is this plot point that is introduced to set up future adventures and strife. I was hoping for more with this story, but it definitely an easy, fun sci-fi book that has very little depth to it.