Today Kim and I bring you a double review of Eidolon by Grace Draven! This is the second novel in the Wraith Kings series. And we both gave it four stars!
Series: Wraith Kings #2
Author: Grace Draven
Published: April 18, 2016
In a bid for more power, the Shadow Queen of Haradis has unleashed a malignant force into the world. Her son Brishen, younger prince of the Kai royal house, suddenly finds himself ruler of a kingdom blighted by a diseased darkness and on the brink of war. His human wife Ildiko must decide if she will give up the man she loves in order to secure his throne.
Three enemy kingdoms must unite to save each other, and a one-eyed, reluctant king must raise an army of the dead to defeat an army of the damned.
A tale of alliance and sacrifice.
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars
Sequels aren’t usually this good! But I really liked Eidolon. The characters were consistent with what we learned about them in the first book, the action was almost as good, and I’m left wanting to hear more of Brishen and Ildiko’s story. My only real criticism is that I felt the solution to defeating the galla, which shall remain unspoiled for those who haven’t read it, was a little anticlimactic. For all the grief and stress and resistance to said solution, it seemed awfully easy once it started. But the emotions and anticipation beforehand and after was really good and I was quite involved throughout the reading. Overall, this is a great book and I look forward to continuing the series!
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars
Dates Read: July 9-25, 2022
Format Read: Kindle e-book
Eidolon is the second in the Wraith Kings series and we continue Brishen and Ildko’s story. But all is not a happy story as we start out with the fall of the royal family. And now the former unimportant ‘spare heir’ Brishen finds himself to have to serve as king with a human wife who will not be able bear him children to continue the family line.
We have their continuing love story with complications and an unknown future for the entire kingdom. We do get much more action with this one as we have a battle that has to happen and Brishen will risk everything. And what decision will Ildiko have to make? We have a love or duty strain going on. But reading the story we know something else is coming that could change everything!
And we still have the sexual tension between Serovek and Anhuset to come! Their story is book three and I am really looking forward to it: They constantly bicker, but Serovek is fun and flirty while Anhuset is a stubborn badass. I have really enjoyed her in the two previous books as I always enjoy a strong female character, and look forward to learning more about her and see her shine!
I have enjoyed both Radiance and Eidolon, along with Brishen and Ildiko’s story. They are just perfect for each other despite the many differences they overcame in Radiance. Romance is not my main genre of choice, but I have enjoyed this series so far and giving both a 4 star reviews says something for Draven’s writing!
Today Kim and I bring you a double review of Radiance by Grace Draven! This is the first in the series, and is way out of my normal genres I read! But we both gave it four stars, so that is saying something!
Series: Wraith Kings #1
Author: Grace Draven
Published: January 13, 2015
The Prince of no value:
Brishen Khaskem, prince of the Kai, has lived content as the nonessential spare heir to a throne secured many times over. A trade and political alliance between the human kingdom of Gaur and the Kai kingdom of Bast-Haradis requires that he marry a Gauri woman to seal the treaty. Always a dutiful son, Brishen agrees to the marriage and discovers his bride is as ugly as he expected and more beautiful than he could have imagined.
The noblewoman of no importance:
Ildiko, niece of the Gauri king, has always known her only worth to the royal family lay in a strategic marriage. Resigned to her fate, she is horrified to learn that her intended groom isn’t just a foreign aristocrat but the younger prince of a people neither familiar nor human. Bound to her new husband, Ildiko will leave behind all she’s known to embrace a man shrouded in darkness but with a soul forged by light.
Two people brought together by the trappings of duty and politics will discover they are destined for each other, even as the powers of a hostile kingdom scheme to tear them apart.
Kim’s Rating: 4 stars
I think Beccie and I have found our groove with Buddy Reads! And this time we brought Yami and Jessica along with us! I’ve heard good things about this book for a while. I’ll admit that it wasn’t what I was expecting; that’s the only reason I gave 4 stars. When I read a romance book, I like smut. This book didn’t have much. But, for a romance book, the plotline was deeper than I expected. And I enjoyed it! I definitely plan on reading more of the series. I also liked the characters. Brishen was pretty stereotypical, but Ildiko surprised me. I really liked her. Normally, I’m not a fan of female characters, but she was likable and consistent. She wasn’t stupid nor did she behave stupidly. Even the villain was beautiful and terrifying and I enjoyed hating her! Overall, an excellent example of quality fantasy romance!
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars
Dates Read: June 23-July 6, 2022
Format Read: Kindle e-book
This one was a buddy read with Beccie, Yami, and Kim. Though I was the slow reader of the group as they all finished it within a few days of starting! Radiance was very much out of my comfort zone with reading in both Fantasy and Romance genres, I did not know what I was going to think of it. Surprise for me: I actually enjoyed it!
We have two people Ildiko and Brishen who are from different species that are forced to marry for their peoples. Brishen is the ‘spare heir’ of no importance who is Kai and Ildiko is of Human royal blood, but also not of enough importance. It is a marriage bound together for a treaty. Both find each other physically revolting, and their first meeting is entertaining at times.
We get to see the differences in the two species both physically and how they live and what they even eat. ( A strong dislike for potatoes for Brishen and for Ildiko as she discovers scarpatine pie… This is something no human would ever want to eat!) But out of their marriage of convenience comes a respect for each other which leads to friendship and humor and eventual love . It is a slow burner romance, so don’t go looking for smut right away because you won’t get it. They are both smart and very mature which this makes a good love story!
There isn’t much that goes on in the story until closer to the end and then we get some action! It seems that Draven is saving the action for the second in the series, which I will be reading.
I really liked Ildiko and Brishen, but his mother…well… You will just have read Radiance to see… His mother is truly a piece of work….
For a novel that is out of my genre, I think four stars is a very good review, and the fact that I will be starting the second says something. Maybe I really am starting to expand my horizons in reading.
Today Kim and I bring you a double review of The Lost Village by Camilla Sten. This was Kim’s first read of 2022 and my first audiobook listen of the year. Sadly, this one was not for either of us.
The Lost Village
Author: Camilla Sten
Published: March 23, 2021
Audiobook/ 340 Pages
Documentary filmmaker Alice Lindstedt has been obsessed with the vanishing residents of the old mining town, dubbed “The Lost Village,” since she was a little girl. In 1959, her grandmother’s entire family disappeared in this mysterious tragedy, and ever since, the unanswered questions surrounding the only two people who were left—a woman stoned to death in the town center and an abandoned newborn—have plagued her. She’s gathered a small crew of friends in the remote village to make a film about what really happened.
But there will be no turning back.
Not long after they’ve set up camp, mysterious things begin to happen. Equipment is destroyed. People go missing. As doubt breeds fear and their very minds begin to crack, one thing becomes startlingly clear to Alice:
They are not alone.
They’re looking for the truth…
But what if it finds them first?
Kim’s Rating: 3 stars
I got this book for Christmas and I was so excited because this book has been on my list for months. So of course I chose it as my first book of 2022. Overall, I was … disappointed. This book had so much potential! A village that was just abandoned with no trace of where the people went and a dead body hanging in the middle of the square!! Why do I never stumble upon places like that?? But everything was just so difficult in this book. The writing style was actually hard to read and my mind wandered a lot. The main character was just difficult to be around; she took every little thing so personally and was so sensitive about everything that it just got annoying.
Then the mystery, which I was so looking forward to, became more predictable by the page. I had one section where I was actually turning pages quickly because of the abandoned building and the suspense, but then everything kinda plunked into place long before the big reveal. It wasn’t a total loss, I actually enjoyed a good portion. It was just too anticlimactic for me. Though there is one reveal that was pretty fun to watch unfold, so like I said, not a total loss. I think there are many people who could read this book and really like it, I just thought it was ok.
Jessica’s Rating: 2.5 Stars
Dates Read: January 2-7, 2022
Format Read: Audiobook
An interesting premise with similarities to The Blair Witch Project, and the story taking place in two time periods (1959 and present day), but my thoughts on The Lost Village ended up being “Meh”…..
Starting with promise, but failing to deliver, the 1959 time period was much more interesting than the present-day time. I was not attached to the characters in present-day in the slightest, and the 1959 period was more intriguing for me as it was more of a suspense thriller for me. The present day tried to be horror but just wasn’t scary. I was intrigued by the connections of characters to the town’s past and when the crew arrived to the town was eerie: Everything was left as if people were coming back at any moment. The ending also did not work for me.
Sadly, I cannot recommend this one, but what did not work for me may be a book you enjoy!