Mini Reviews: Gathering Darkness (Falling Kingdoms #3) and Frozen Tides (Falling Kingdoms #4) by Morgan Rhodes

I decided to do two mini reviews of books three and four in the Falling Kingdoms series because as much as I know you all loving reading my reviews of this series…I felt like it would get a bit repetitive. These reviews will contain spoilers for the previous books in the series so proceed with caution. If you are wondering whether or not you should read this fantastic series (hint: you should!!) check out the review of the first book here.

 

Gathering Darkness (Falling Kingdoms #3) by Morgan Rhodes

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In GATHERING DARKNESS, book three of the New York Times bestselling Falling Kingdoms series, the stakes have never been higher as three teams push forward on a race to find the Kindred, the four elemental crystals possessing ancient all-powerful magic, first:

Prince Magnus has just witnessed torture, death, and miracles during the bloody confrontation that decimated the rebel forces. Now he must choose between family and justice as his father, the cruel King Gaius, sets out to conquer all of Mytica. All Gaius needs now are the Kindred – the four elemental crystals that give godlike powers to their owner. But the King of Blood is not the only one hunting for this ancient, storied magic…

• THE KRAESHIANS join the hunt. Ashur and Amara, the royal siblings from the wealthy kingdom across the Silver Sea, charm and manipulate their way to the Kindred, proving to be more ruthless than perhaps even the King of Blood himself.

• THE REBELS forge ahead. Princess Cleo and vengeful Jonas lead them, slaying with sweetness, skill, and a secret that can control Lucia’s overpowering magic – all so they can use the Kindred to win back their fallen kingdoms.

• THE WATCHERS follow Melenia out of the Sanctuary. They ally in the flesh with King Gaius, who vows to use Lucia’s powers to unveil the Kindred.

The only certainty in the dark times is that whoever finds the magic first will control the fate of Mytica… but fate can be fickle when magic is involved.


Continue reading “Mini Reviews: Gathering Darkness (Falling Kingdoms #3) and Frozen Tides (Falling Kingdoms #4) by Morgan Rhodes”

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Mini Review: The Creepy Hollow Series by Rachel Morgan

Its been a while since I read this series (I did read it twice though!) but I honestly thought it was wonderful. It is also a great deal for the ebook- book 1 is free, and books 2 + 3 are $3.99 each. The story follows Vi, an aspiring faerie guardian. She wants to graduate her class and join the Guild to protect humans from creatures in her Fae world. This trilogy was well-written, with an exciting plot and well-developed characters. This series is a gem (and a great deal). I was pleasantly surprised!

Book 1: The Faerie Guardian

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Blurb and image from Amazon:

“Enter a hidden world of magic, mystery, action and romance …
Seventeen-year-old Violet Fairdale has one job: protect humans from dangerous magical creatures. It’s a job she’s good at—until her latest assignment, a cute human guy who can somehow see through her faerie glamour, follows her into the fae realm. Now she’s broken Guild law and risked her future as the top graduate of her class.

The last thing Vi wants to do is spend any more time with the guy who got her into this mess, but the Guild requires that she return Nate to his home and make him forget everything he’s discovered of the fae realm. Easy, right? Not when you factor in evil faeries, long-lost family members, and inconvenient feelings of the romantic kind. Vi is about to find herself tangled up in a dangerous plot—and it’ll take all her training to get out alive.”


As I mentioned above, I was pleasantly surprised with this book! Vi is an easy character to sympathize with- she’s fierce and determined to be the top of her class. She is also a little lonely- her family is gone and the only person she really cares about is her mentor, Tora. This probably leads her to break the Guild rules and make contact with Nate, a human. While I wasn’t a huge fan of Nate and Violet together, he is a hugely important character in this series. We also meet Ryn in this first installment, although he mostly antagonizes Vi throughout the book until they are forced to work together when he needs her help rescuing a loved one.

This book had the right mix of likable characters and a well-developed world. I loved learning about how the Guardians protected the human realm and how some faeries had extra gifts. After finishing this first book, I happily purchased The Faerie Prince and I was not disappointed!

4/5


Book 2: The Faerie Prince

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Blurb and Image from Amazon: 

“Guardian trainee Violet Fairdale is just weeks away from one of the most important occasions of her life: graduation. After messing up big time by bringing a human into the fae realm, Vi needs to step up her game and forget about Nate if she hopes to graduate as the top guardian of her year. Everything would be fine if she wasn’t forced to partner with Ryn, her ex-friend, ex-enemy, current ‘sort of friend.’ They might be trying to patch up their relationship, but does she really want to spend a week undercover with him for their final assignment? On top of that, the possibly insane Unseelie Prince is still on the loose, free to ‘collect’ as many specially talented faeries as he can find–and Vi is still at the top of his list. Add in faerie queens, enchanted storms, complicated not-just-friends feelings, and a murder within the Guild itself, and graduation is about to become the least of Vi’s problems. “

*Spoilers from Book 1*


This installment was even better than the first. Action-packed with a swoon-worthy romance. If you were unsure about the romance in book 1, you will not be disappointed here! Still reeling from Nate’s betrayal and graduation approaching, Vi is so close to her goal of becoming a guardian. She has one more task to complete and she has to work with Ryn as her partner. I loved seeing Vi’s relationship develop with Ryn- the dialogue was great and we got to see an antagonistic relationship develop into..something more. We also get to see more of Vi’s world in this book with a trip to the Seelie court as well as learn about Vi’s true motivations for wanting to be the top of her class and win this trip. The book also ends with a HUGE cliffhanger and I could not wait to purchase the third.

What I love about this series is that while the main plot seems to be about Violet’s guardian training and graduation from the Guild, Morgan expertly creates a story about something much bigger than Violet and her school. There is this overarching story about the fate of her world and the faerie relations in it. Vi also goes through an incredible transformation through these first two books, and hits a low at the end of book 2. I  was blown away by some of the twists and turns throughout this book. It was an exciting ride!

5/5


Book 3: The Faerie War

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Blurb and image from Amazon: 

“Violet Fairdale is in big trouble. Her home is gone, her beloved forest lies in ruins, the guy she gave her heart to has deserted her—and she doesn’t remember any of it. The powerful Lord Draven is taking over, brainwashing guardians into fighting for him. No one is safe from the evil spreading throughout the fae world. 

As alliances are forged between the remaining free fae, Vi struggles to reclaim her identity and figure out where she belongs in this new world. When someone from her past shows up, life gets more complicated. He brings with him a long-forgotten weapon and an ancient prophecy that places Vi at the center of the fight against Draven. With the future of the fae world at stake, can Vi carry out the prophecy’s instructions before it’s too late?”

*Includes spoilers from Books 1+2*


We ended the last book with Vi choosing to erase her memory, and the first part of this book is truly heartbreaking as a reader because we know what she lost. She is now with a new community of Reptiscillas as she tries to recover her memory. This book is told with alternating viewpoints with Ryn, and I really enjoyed seeing things from his perspective. When they finally meet up, I loved watching Ryn and Vi trying to mend their relationship it was both parts heartbreaking and adorable.

This final installment is focused on the threat of Lord Draven and his brainwashed army. I don’t want to give away too much, but it was expertly done. There are no one-dimensional villains in this series and that makes it both exciting and unpredictable. This was a fantastic finale and as soon as I finished I was tempted to start the series over again!

 

5/5