Thank you to Raincoast and Bramble for the advance reader copy of Fall of Ruin and Wrath, the first book in the Awakening series.
I have been reading JLA books for ten years now and when she starts a new series all the excitement of reading her for the first time comes back! I was so excited to dive into a new fantasy world from her as I was enjoying From Blood and Ash for a while, but I gave up on it as it grew almost out of control. So, the chance for a new world, and new characters was super exciting to me.
SHE LIVES BY HER INTUITION. HE FEEDS ON HER PLEASURE.
Long ago, the world was destroyed by gods. Only nine cities were spared. Separated by vast wilderness teeming with monsters and unimaginable dangers, each city is now ruled by a guardian―royalty who feed on mortal pleasure.
Born with an intuition that never fails, Calista knows her talents are of great value to the power-hungry of the world, so she lives hidden as a courtesan of the Baron of Archwood. In exchange for his protection, she grants him information.
When her intuition leads her to save a traveling prince in dire trouble, the voice inside her blazes with warning―and promise. Today he’ll bring her joy. One day he’ll be her doom.
When the Baron takes an interest in the traveling prince and the prince takes an interest in Calista, she becomes the prince’s temporary companion. But the city simmers with rebellion, and with knights and monsters at her city gates and a hungry prince in her bed, intuition may not be enough to keep her safe.
Calista must follow her intuition to safety or follow her heart to her downfall.”
Check out my more detailed thoughts below…
- Characters: I adore Lis so much, and she is a welcome change from the overpowered fantasy heroine. She is much more relatable, she feels as if you or I have been dropped into a fantasy world. She is not great with a sword necessarily, but I loved that she had the confidence and stubbornness that had helped her survive for so long. I really loved her unique powerset, it is not as if she sees the future rather Thorne is an interesting hero that I truly still struggle to form a cohesive opinion on. He reads very much like the classic romantasy book boyfriend, with his mysterious yet commanding presence. I think I’ll need the sequel before I really know how I feel about him. But I did kind of like that I could not nail down my feelings, it kept me so intrigued about his character and just left me wanting to know more and more. A moment for the side characters who were a combination of characters I could not help but love like Grady and characters who I just kept wanting to dissect more like The Baron.
- Setting/World: Lis lives in the manor of the Baron of Archwood which is located in the wider world of the Kingdom of Caelum. I will be the first to admit you should read this for the romance first before the world and other fantasy elements. So much still feels very unknown and the later chunk of the story really shakes things up.
- Pacing: This is such a fast-paced and easy story to read. I engulfed it in two days and at only four hundred pages it is a relatively manageable fantasy novel. It is the perfect book for the romance reader who does not read fantasy that often, If you love Fourth Wing and want it to be more steamy then this will be the perfect book for you.
- Romance: I love a sex-positive fantasy with courtesans! So the ARC copy I read had four spicy peppers on the back of it and I was like yeah right we will see. Omg, it deserved all four! This book oozes sexual tension on each page. This might be one of Jennifer L. Armentrout’s spiciest novels yet, especially for the level of steam this is for a first book! Calista and Thorne have such great tension in so many scenes even when they are just talking or doing nothing seemingly sexy at all. Also, I am a sucker for when the hero has a nickname for the heroine, especially when it is a name with so many layers like na’laa. I cannot wait to see where JLA takes this world and this romance next.
Fall of Ruin and Wrath receives four out of five stars.
You can pick up the story below…
Thank you again to Raincoast and Bramble for the review opportunity. Thank you for reading and supporting my blog!