Series: Shattered Realms #1
Also in this series: Shadowcaster
Published by HarperCollins on April 5th 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy & Magic, Action & Adventure, General, Social Themes, Friendship, Social Issues
Also by this author: Shadowcaster, The Demon King, The Exiled Queen, The Gray Wolf Throne, The Crimson Crown
eARC provided by HarperCollins
Set in the world of the New York Times bestselling Seven Realms series, a generation later, this is a breathtaking story of dark magic, chilling threats, and two unforgettable characters walking a knife-sharp line between life and death. This dazzling beginning to a new series is indispensable for fans of Cinda Williams Chima and a perfect starting point for readers who are new to her work.
Adrian sul’Han, known as Ash, is a trained healer with a powerful gift of magic—and a thirst for revenge. Ash is forced into hiding after a series of murders throws the queendom into chaos. Now he’s closer than ever to killing the man responsible, the cruel king of Arden. With time running out, Ash faces an excruciating choice: Can he use his powers not to save a life but to take it?
Abandoned at birth, Jenna Bandelow was told that the magemark on the back of her neck would make her a target. But when the King’s Guard launches a relentless search for a girl with a mark like hers, Jenna assumes that it has more to do with her role as a saboteur than any birth-based curse. Though Jenna doesn’t know why she’s being hunted, she knows that she can’t get caught.
Eventually, Ash’s and Jenna’s paths will collide in Arden. Thrown together by chance and joined by their hatred of the ruthless king, they will come to rescue each other in ways they cannot yet imagine.
This review might not be coherent. I really loved this story, but it’s complicated. It’s hard to explain. My love for this book is hard to talk about. Bear with me as I try to put my thoughts about this book into words.
Famecaster is one of those stories that has everything I want in a fantasy. This story had many layers, well drawn characters, descriptive world building, magic, dragons, and a promise of more to come. Yes, I did say dragons. There is a bloody dragon in this story! I am scared of dragons in fiction, honestly. Making them seem real is difficult and not everyone can pull it off. *Adds Cinda Williams Chima to the very short list of people that can make a dragon seem real.*
The beginning of this book was addictive and the action didn’t let up throughout the story. I loved the descriptive writing and the promise of magic, so I became hooked right away. The writing in this story is amazing. Seriously, I am blown away. The world building is so exciting. We get to see a snippet of the Seven Realms. Ash is in a school in Oden’s Ford, then he travels The West Road with Lila. He makes his way to Ardenscourt. In Ardenscourt, we explore everything from the dungeons to the tower. Meanwhile, Destin gets sent to Deliphi. Jenna is a resident there. Destin is on a mission to bring Jenna to Ardencourt. Then Ash and Jenna meet… (there’s also a map if you want to follow along like I did)
Adrian sul’Han (aka Ash) is on a mission to kill the King of Arden. Ash is a mage and the son of Han? (don’t fault me for not knowing who Han is people, I am new to this author)
Jenna Bandelow (aka Flamecaster) was raised by step-parents. She was abandoned by her own parents because of a mage mark on her neck basically targeting her. She is immune to magic and everyone is looking for her.
Ash + Jenna.
Those are the main characters. We also get a perspective from Lila Barrowhill, who is on a mission to protect Ash. She might be my favorite character b/c she is a smuggler/black-marketer. Lila is a bad ass. I want to learn more about her. The other character who gets some attention is Destin Karn. He is a character working intelligence directly for the king. I am not sure how he is going to fit into all of this because his loyalty seems to be to the king of Arden, but we’ll see how he plays out.
This is my first book by Cinda Williams Chima, but it won’t be my last. I am looking into getting every single book this author has ever penned and adding it to my collection. I really want to read the Seven Realms series now. Plus, it will give me something to do while I count the minutes to the sequel for this book. Don’t try to tell me not to. I know a lot of people said I couldn’t read The Grisha Trilogy after I read Six of Crows and I did it and enjoyed all of them.
If you are a fan of YA fantasy, you need to read this book. That is all.