Book Look + Review: The Valiant by Lesley Livingston | Blog Tour + Giveaway


I’m beyond thrilled to be on the blog tour for THE VALIANT! I absolutely loved this book, and I can’t wait to share my thoughts on it with you! Here’s a little bit about the book:


The Valiant by Lesley Livingston
The Valiant #1
Genre: YA Fantasy, Historical
Publication: February 14th 2017 by Razorbill
Length: 384 pages
Format: ARC

Lost to history, the story of the female gladiator has never been told. Until now.

Fallon is the daughter of a proud Celtic king and the younger sister of the legendary warrior Sorcha. When Fallon was just a child, Sorcha was killed while defending their home from the armies of Julius Caesar.

On the eve of her seventeenth birthday, Fallon is excited to follow in her sister’s footsteps and earn her place in her father’s war band. She never gets the chance.

Fallon is captured by ruthless brigands who sell her to an elite training school for female gladiators owned by none other than Julius Caesar himself. In a cruel twist of fate, the man who destroyed Fallon s family might be her only hope of survival.
Now, Fallon must overcome vicious rivalries, deadly fights in and out of the arena, and perhaps the most dangerous threat of all: her irresistible feelings for Cai, a young Roman soldier and her sworn enemy.

A richly imagined fantasy for fans of Sarah J. Maas and Cinda Williams Chima, “The Valiant” recounts Fallon’s gripping journey from fierce Celtic princess to legendary gladiator and darling of the Roman empire.”

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THE VALIANT was such a fast-paced historical fiction (with some fantastical elements) story, and I really enjoyed this one! This novel surrounds Fallon, who gets sold into a school for female gladiators. The concept was so entertaining and reminded me a lot of THRONE OF GLASS (I’ve only read the first book, mind you) and DIVERGENT (I’ve only read the first book of this series too, oops) in a lot of ways.

The concept of this book was super interesting; I don’t usually read historical fiction, but gladiators—female, too!—intrigued me. My knowledge of Julius Caesar and gladiators during that time period is quite sparse, so this novel also is getting me into reading up on my history. I also appreciated the multiple twists and turns; you definitely won’t get bored (coming from someone who DNFs a book almost as soon as it gets boring).

Fallon was such a dynamic and multi-dimensional character, which I loved. From the beginning of the book to the very end, Fallon has a strong personality, even during times of stress and trauma. My favorite aspect of her character is that even though she’s pushed into various predicaments, she fights not for a love interest, but for herself. She was down-to-earth about what she wanted and knew what she was fighting for, and I really appreciated that aspect of her.


There is some of romance, but it doesn’t overshadow the storyline. It’s complex and complicated, which I’m a sucker for, so I’m excited to see where the romance ends up in the next book. I liked Cai, though I do wish his character was expressed a bit more—it is a very character-centric (Fallon, mainly) novel, so I do understand why his character was kind of towards the sidelines. Anyhow, the kissing scenes made up for it.  😉

Overall, THE VALIANT is a fresh and action-packed novel that is not to be missed. Filled with complex characters and expertly incorporated motifs, this novel is definitely worth picking up!

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Thank you to Razorbill / Penguin for providing me with this book in exchange for an honest review.

Book Look!

Fallon is a super-badass gladiatrix, and I love how she looks on the cover, so I wanted to create a modern-day look based on THE VALIANT. Buy links are attached (not affiliated)!

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Lace Up Flippy Dress

I absolutely love this dress; the flair at the top is so cute, and the shortened sleeves remind me a lot of the dress that Fallon is wearing. (Minus the gear, but it’s still cute.)

Fine Gauge Choker Knitted Top // Jersey Leggings

Alternatively, if dresses aren’t your thing, I dig this sweater paired with some leggings. The choker in the sweater is so. dang. cute. In a way, I think that’ll give a nice athletic look!

Sueded Gladiator Heeled Sandals // Pointy-Toe Lace-Up Flats

I’ve been digging strappy shoes lately (I recently bought myself some lace-up flats too!), and these shoes remind me a lot of the shoes that Fallon is wearing on the cover.

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Star Ear Cuffs

There’s a lot of ways you could go with accessories; since this is a modern-day look, you can basically include anything! For some reason, these ear cuffs seem like a gladiatrix-like accessory.

This was so so so much fun to do! What kinds of accessories and clothes would you include in your modern-day gladiatrix look? Let me know in the comments!

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unnamed-2.jpgLesley Livingston is the author of Once Every Never, winner of the inaugural Copper Cylinder Award and shortlisted for the CLA Young Adult Book Award and the BC Stellar Book Award. She is also the author of the Wondrous Strange and Starling trilogies. She lives in Toronto. 

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Giveaway Details:

Enter for a chance to win one (1) of five (5) copies of The Valiant by Lesley Livingston (ARV: $17.99 each).
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on February 13, 2017 and 12:00 AM on March 13, 2017.  Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about March 15, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.

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Check out the rest of the tour!

Week One
2/13 – Tales of the Ravenous Reader – Gladiator Makeup
2/14 – Two Chicks on Books – Author Interview
2/15 – Alexa Loves Books – Weapon Spotlight: Bow & Arrow
2/16 – Novel Novice – Review
2/17 – Arctic Books – Review + Book Look (you’re here!)
Week Two
2/20 – Brittany’s Book Rambles – Author Guest Post
2/21 – What Sarah Read – Review + Mood Board
2/22 – Mundie Moms – Weapon Spotlight: Shield
2/23 – ButterMyBooks – Author Interview
2/24 – Fiction Fare – Weapon Spotlight: Dimachaerus
Week Three
2/27 – Oh the Book Feels – Author Interview
2/28 – Seeing Double in Neverland – Weapon Spotlight: Gladius
3/1 – No More Grumpy Bookseller – Review
3/2 – The YA Book Traveler – Weapon Spotlight: Trident & Net
3/3 – My Friends Are Fiction – Author Guest Post
Week Four
3/6 – The Reading Nook Reviews – Weapon Spotlight: Spear
3/7 – A Page with a View – Like/Try/Why
3/8 – The Young Folks – Author Guest Post
3/9 – Icey Books – Quote Candy + Review
3/10 – Book Addict’s Guide – Bookish Scents


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Have you read THE VALIANT yet? What were your thoughts? What clothes and accessories would you include in a modern-day gladiatrix look? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!


28 thoughts on “Book Look + Review: The Valiant by Lesley Livingston | Blog Tour + Giveaway

  1. I thought it was so great you took a different approach to the shoes situation! I totally thought it would be the high gladiator sandals (super obvious choice, lol), but you created such a cool outfit with the small ones. Great post and review,


  2. I haven’t read this yet, but from your review, I’m going to love this character–it is refreshing that she fights for herself and not for love–and stays strong while doing so. I don’t know much either about this historical time, so this will be added fun.


  3. I have been awaiting this book for a while now and I’ve heard it be compared to An Ember in the Ashes which I absolutely loved! Can’t wait to be able to pick it up.


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