Many thanks to Patricia and FFBC Tours for my spot on this Blog Tour.
The cover…oooh the cover caught my eye. It was bloody brilliant. Looking at it caused my imagination to travel to the worlds yonder. The blurb of a kickass heroine, a hunk of a warrior, different lands, forbidden love, gods manipulating humans, power and battle all forced me to read this book. And boy, did Jill Criswell deliver!!
Lira lived in Glasinth and was a soul reader, a power gifted by the gods. Reyker was a savage washed ashore to her lands, barely alive. Lira recognized him to be the boy who had saved her life eons ago, so she healed him. Later, she learned that he was the weapon, a Beast from the land of the Frozen Sun, hated by her clan. Both were marked by Draki, the dragon lord who wanted to possess Lira’s powers and make Reyker his weapon in the wars, fighting for the Dragon.
The book followed the journey through battles, some they chose, some they were plunged into. Each character in this world wanted to use the two for their own gains. There was a constant carnage almost every few pages. Every God was bloodthirsty and wanted a piece of Lira. Some scenes felt a bit repetitive due to that.
The first book in the series written by Jill Criswell, the story was pretty dark with violence and slaughter in every other chapter. The world Jill drew me in was complex with the Forbidden Scriptures and Dark Gods. There were some lost beings, The Fallen Ones, who were forgotten but waiting to arise through Lira and Reyker.
Blood was spilled, betrayals and ruthlessness were shown. Every favor demanded its price. This was a hard land. And yet... The theme of a soul binding love beat a strange rhythm in the pages of the book. Its unspoken lyrics was in the hearts of the present and the past There were times when I could feel the silent thrums of this song of love flowing in the background.
The book did end in a big cliffhanger and the characters had yet to leave this land to go on their journey, thereby paving its way for book 2.
The book pulled me in by its sheer complexity, the greed of the Gods, and the love and bond between the main characters. A good breakfast read. I sometimes wake up longing to read a bloodthirsty book.
I received a free ARC from NetGalley and publisher Blackstone Publishing, and this is my journey into its pages, straight from the heart!! STRICTLY HONEST AND UNBIASED.
All my reviews can be read here
Jill Criswell is a writer of Young Adult Historical Fantasy. She was born and raised in the swamps of northeastern Florida. She earned degrees in English and Psychology and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Central Florida. Her greatest passion, besides reading and writing, is traveling the world; she’s visited fifty countries across six continents, falling in love with places like Iceland, Namibia, and Cambodia. She works as a university English teacher and lives in South Carolina, near the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, with her husband and daughter (who is named after a volcano in Iceland).
Burn brightly. Love fiercely. For all else is dust.
Every child of Glasnith learns the last words of Aillira, the god-gifted mortal whose doomed love affair sparked a war of gods and men, and Lira of clan Stone knows the story better than most. As a descendant of Aillira and god-gifted in her own right, she has the power to read people’s souls, to see someone’s true essence with only a touch of her hand.
When a golden-haired warrior washes up on the shores of her homeland–one of the fearful marauders from the land of the Frozen Sun–Lira helps the wounded man instead of turning him in. After reading his soul, she realizes Reyker is different than his brethren who attack the coasts of Glasnith. He confides in her that he’s been cursed with what his people call battle-madness, forced to fight for the warlord known as the Dragon, a powerful tyrant determined to reignite the ancient war that Aillira started.
As Lira and Reyker form a bond forbidden by both their clans, the wrath of the Dragon falls upon them and all of Glasnith, and Lira finds herself facing the same tragic fate as her ancestor. The battle for Lira’s life, for Reyker’s soul, and for their peoples’ freedom has only just begun.
Publisher: Blackstone Publishing
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