Review – The Beholder by Anna Bright


Title The Beholder

Author Anna Bright

Description from Amazon

Selah has waited her whole life for a happily ever after. As the only daughter of the leader of Potomac, she knows her duty is to find the perfect match.

But after an excruciatingly public rejection, Selah’s stepmother suggests an unthinkable solution: Selah must set sail across the Atlantic to visit a series of potential suitors—and if she doesn’t come home engaged, she shouldn’t come home at all.

From the gardens of England to the fjords of Norge, Selah’s quest will be the journey of a lifetime. But her stepmother’s schemes aren’t the only secrets hiding belowdecks…and the stakes of her voyage may be higher than any happy ending.

Initial Thoughts

I was so excited to read this book!  It sounded like The Selection or my secret obsession (The Bachelorette) but on a boat and with royalty.  So up my alley.  Please see my hype post for all of my pre-reading excitement.

Favorite Character

Captain Lang — hands down the best character.  I knew all along that he was hiding something and he was definitely my favorite character.  He likes Selah and it pains me to watch how oblivious she is but, hopefully, by the next book, she’ll figure it out.  Alessandra only told her to come home with a fiance, she didn’t say it had to be from the list.

Series Value

I just read on GoodReads this morning that The Beholder is going to be a duology.  I can definitely see why.  There is so much left in the story, I’m not sure how one more book will cover it.

Since I found this book somewhat incomplete, I will definitely be reading the next installment.  But, to clarify, I am reading it out of my need for completion, and not because I find the story that compelling.

One Thing I Liked

  • Alternate history — I loved the elements of familiar and new that made up the setting.  For example, New York and Nordea.  One place is real and one is made up for the story.  I loved how Anna Bright wove the two together to create a cohesive world.

Some Things I Wasn’t Crazy About

  • I felt like Selah fell for these different guys way too quickly.  The timeline was very muddy in that sense.  Like she spent 6 weeks on the ship with Captain Lang and basically felt nothing, but then a week after meeting Torden, she was ready to marry him?  I wanted to think she knew better than that.
  • The plot twist in England.  I saw that coming a mile away.  I don’t have a problem with it, but I thought her reaction was a little much.  But, I guess what other reason would she have to meet the other suitors if she was ready to settle on the first.

Final Thoughts

I kinda felt like nothing happened here.  Every time Selah would gain some momentum, she’d lose it all and have to move on to the next place.  Also, I am entirely disappointed that she doesn’t know she’s meant to be with Captain Lang.


Recommendations for Further Reading

  • The Selection Series by Kiera Cass — the first three books in this series are the opposite of The Beholder (a prince tries to find a wife), but last two books are the same scenario as seen in The Beholder.  Also set in a place with familiar elements and some new ones, the Selection has a more dystopian vibe.  If you liked The Beholder, give this series a try.
  • Rook by Sharon Cameron — this isn’t a story of a girl trying to find a husband, but it does have many of the same elements.  If you liked the alternate history aspect of The Beholder, give this standalone a try.
  • Slumber by Becky Bird — this recommendation might seem a bit random, but trust me.  It has so many of the same elements.  A prince who thinks he knows what he wants, discovers he doesn’t know, and then figures it out.  Prince Thomas in Slumber is basically Selah in The Beholder.  Give this book a try when it comes out next Wednesday.


7 thoughts on “Review – The Beholder by Anna Bright

  1. I gave this book 4 stars. It was kind of a fast fluff read for me, but a lot of fun and a lot better than I had anticipated. I loved the mythology and fairy tale re-tellings mixed into the story and can’t wait to see what happens next. I did get major Selection vibes as well and it makes me want to go back and finish that series.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I am interested to see what happens next! I hope she completes the whole trip and goes to the Imperia (spelling?) that she’s so terrified of. I really loved the part when she was with the boys running in Norge (once again, spelling?) and she said she felt so alive, it just made me feel so good!

        Liked by 1 person

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