Through blood and sacrifice, Amora Montara has conquered a rebellion and taken her rightful place as queen of Visidia. Now, with the islands in turmoil and the people questioning her authority, Amora cannot allow anyone to see her weaknesses. No one can know about the curse in her bloodline. No one can know that she’s lost her magic. No one can know the truth about the boy who holds the missing half of her soul.
I honestly didn’t think Amora really went through any growth from the first book to now. Sure she is now the Queen of Visidia but other than that title she now holds she is pretty much the same. She still comes across as unrelatable and naïve and won’t let anyone in her crew in on what’s going on with her and has way to many secrets. She will play the friendship card with them but as soon as they have an opinion or idea that contradicts with her plans she will order them to submit. She’s a tad too reckless and just overall not likeable to me.
Bastian remains one of my favourites out of all the characters. He will challenge Amara regularly and the banter between them is still so entertaining to read. I like that his communication with her is always open and honest and he will express how he is feeling to her consistently. Amara was blinded by what effects the curse had on him because she was so concerned about herself and he exposed that to her which I appreciated.
Ferrick was always a stable and consistent character throughout the course of the series. He was a great friend and advisor to Amara and would give her sound advice often that she continually chose to ignore. I didn’t appreciate how he ultimately chose Amara over himself and made that sacrifice. I think his character’s arc deserved a better ending, even just being remembered would be better than what we got. I liked the fact that Vataea stood up for herself and had that blow up with Amara. She didn’t just accept the apology and continued on being one of her crew mates. I didn’t think it was the right decision for Amara to keep that secret from Vataea and I felt justified when she left.
Overall this was a highly entertaining and thrilling read. There were several plot twists that kept me wanting to read more and had me guessing what was going to happen next. I like how Amara decided to end the reign of the Montara’s and allow everyone to learn soul magic. I think it was the right decision and gave her the freedom she was yearning for.
⭐️3/5 stars A few things I didn’t like, overall a good duology!!
With the Marigold ship free of her father, Fable and the rest of the crew were set to start over. That freedom is short-lived when Fable becomes a pawn in a notorious thug’s scheme. In order to get to her intended destination, she must help him to secure a partnership with Holland, a powerful gem trader who is more than she seems.
Fable in this book just goes from one predicament to the next. I feel as though she is very much in over her head for the majority of the storyline, but she does manage to pull it together and ultimately get everything she wants, albeit at the expense of the other crew members of the Marigold. I appreciate that they called her out for her selfishness and she does acknowledge that.
We get to learn a lot more about the dredging in this book which I appreciated. Seeing the whole process of the diving and all the variables that go with it. I liked seeing how Fay and Koy establish a bit of a mutual respect as Jevalis even though they had their differences in the past. With that connection coming fill circle when they create a trade port in Jevali.
West really goes above and beyond the protective and loving boyfriend trope. He made some decisions in this book that were just too full on and should have been discussed with everyone beforehand. Especially when he wouldn’t let the crew vote on whether or not to join Fay to find Midnight and then signing Holland’s contract on Fay’s behalf. His heart is in the right place but he just keeps alienating everyone in an attempt to protect/save them which wasn’t really necessary.
The relationship between Fable and Saint is what bumped up my rating for sure! We are never really know what Saint’s motivations are throughout the course of the duology, does he actually love Fay or does he scorn her for being alive when Isolde perished? We are finally given all the answers to the questions that kept building up in the plot as to why he did what he did. Clove was a great source of information and made us realise that Saint was actually in the midst of running more schemes than what we initially thought. When everything came to a head at the meeting and he finally stood up and acknowledged Fable as his daughter was a beautiful moment that had me glassy eyed for sure!
⭐️ 3/5 stars Daring, adventurous and swashbuckling!
For seventeen-year-old Fable, the daughter of the most powerful trader in the Narrows, the sea is the only home she has ever known. It’s been four years since the night she watched her mother drown during an unforgiving storm. The next day her father abandoned her on a legendary island filled with thieves and little food. To survive she must keep to herself, learn to trust no one, and rely on the unique skills her mother taught her.
I really like Fable’s character, though I feel she does need that little bit more growth and development. When we learn about her story and how she has had to stay alive for so long I definitely feel sympathy for her yet she does all the things she knows she shouldn’t do any has to flee from Jeval for her life. I am very curious about her powers and how her mother taught her, I wish we would have found out a bit more about that but hopefully in the next book all is revealed.
West is one of those broody male love interests in YA books that I just happen to love. He is rude and standoffish and lays down the law with Fable right from the start and yet he has a softer side that we learn about throughout the course of the plot that just makes you fall for him. He is very secretive and I am curious as to how he brokered the deal with Saint in the first place and what he will do next! The relationship did kind of feel a little rushed even though not a lot happens. There was a bit of tension between the two of them but not enough for me to quite believe the depth of their feelings.
I am very intrigued by the crew of the Marigold and how they all came together. West really seems to trust each of them with their lives and it is really shown in the plot. They were all so wary and untrusting of Fable at the start that I wonder how what happened with their previous dredger. I feel like they are so much more I want to learn about each of them and I really hope we delve more into their characters in the next book.
Overall I love the premise and tone of the story, it’s very cutthroat and unyielding. The stakes are continually raised and I was definitely reading with anticipation about what was going to happen next! There are still so many questions I have in regards to the world, the magic system and these characters and I am hopeful that the next book delivers!
⭐️4/5 stars I was taken on a journey and enjoyed every minute!
*A Few Spoilers*
Kappa Rho Nu isn’t your average sorority. Their parties are notorious. Their fundraisers are known for being Westerly College’s most elaborate affairs. But beneath the veil of Greek life and prestige, the sisters of Kappu Rho Nu share a secret: they’re a coven of witches.
I liked the dual perspective. We have Vivi who knows nothing about magic and witches and what the sorority is all about, young and naïve and then we have Scarlett a legacy at Kappa and a shoe in to become the next president. Vivi at the start I can totally relate to wanting to have some consistency in her life and get away from her mother and start fresh. Meanwhile Scarlett is very comfortable in her role at Kappa and is wanting to build upon her life and establish herself as the best and better and stronger than her sister and live up to her mother’s expectations.
At first I was a little salty at Scarlett for being so nasty to Vivi and being so threatened by her. I know she is under a lot of pressure from her family and her own insecurities but I don’t think that excuses you from treating someone badly. She is so set in her thoughts about what her life ‘should’ be like and she really projected that onto Mason instead of really hearing him out and sympathising with his feelings. I can see why he would end the relationship but I think it was a little shady of him to move straight onto Vivi like 5 minutes later at the homecoming dance.
Vivi really just wants to fit in and find a place where she feels wanted and accepted and she really found that with the Kappa’s the other freshman. She is very loyal very quickly to her sisters and even though I find it commendable I think putting them over her mother and not sitting down and listening to her for five minutes instead of just taking the necklace was a bit much.
The mystery surrounding Gwen was interesting but when we find out what actually happened and how Harper was killed was kind of anticlimactic for me. The magic though we do learn a lot through hell week I would of liked a more in depth run down of how the system works. I definitely found it to be quite original and exciting. Overall I am intrigued and enjoyed the story but it felt kind of more YA than what I was expecting despite the quite macabre nature of the storyline, but I am still excited to pick up the next book in this duology.
⭐️3/5 stars Witchy vibes are real!!
*SOME SPOILERS BELOW*
After her mother dies in an accident, sixteen-year-old Bree Matthews wants nothing to do with her family memories or childhood home. A residential program for bright high schoolers at UNC–Chapel Hill seems like the perfect escape—until Bree witnesses a magical attack her very first night on campus.
I have to honest this book just seemed to go on forever and it was difficult for me to get into at the start. It wasn’t until I was at least halfway through that I actually became interested in what was happening in the plot and understanding everything to do with the Order. The writing at times felt a little disjointed and I was confused when chapters ended and felt like I was missing information. Like I would have to go back and read the last couple of paragraphs before continuing on because I couldn’t understand the continuation.
Once I was actually invested in the story it was highly interesting. Everything to do with the Root magic and how it interconnected with Bree’s family in particular. I love the separate storyline with Patricia and how she helps Bree with her grief whilst also sharing with her knowledge about her mother and what she can do. I wish we got more interactions between them because I think Patricia was a very calming and nurturing person in Bree’s life and I was a lot more interested in the Root magic.
The Order and Line of Scion was very confusing at first to take in. There are just a lot of characters and titles that was a little difficult to get my head around. That part of the story felt info dumpy to me and I struggled to get a clear picture of what was happening when she was there. Once I was able to figure it out the politics and hierarchy was infuriating. I am glad Bree chose to stand her ground and confront those who were racist and colourist towards her.
I am liking the love triangle that is taking place but I feel like they formed these relationships way too quickly. Nick being in love with Bree after like two days is unrealistic and it felt rushed to me. Sel’s I can sympathise with because I feel like he had so many more intimate and powerful moments with Bree than with Nick so I’m intrigued to know how that plays out for sure!
There is sooo much packed into this story and honestly was a lot to comprehend, but the plot is highly original and action packed. The magic system was interesting and branches off a lot so I’m excited to learn more about it and how aether can be manipulated. The twists were surprising and I couldn’t predict anything that was going to happen which is always a plus.
⭐️3/5 stars A promising start, will definitely be continuing on!