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I finally got past my book burn-out that From Blood and Ash series had left me with. That is the longest burn-out I’ve had in a while. Furyborn is the first in The Empirium Trilogy by Claire Legrand. I shall it come up on TikTok quite a few times as recommended with little to no details. The only thing going into the book that I knew was a comparison to Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo. Though different in a way that The Empirium Triology is more in depth and thought out in a way.
And since I haven’t done one of these in ages, I’m going to share my thoughts as I read through the book. So, there will be spoilers. There might also be spoilers for Shadow and Bone series since I’ll be making some comparisons between the books.
But before we get to that. Let’s go over the details of the book.
Furyborn is an epic YA fantasy about two fiercely independent young women, centuries apart, who hold the power to save their world…or doom it.
When assassins ambush her best friend, Rielle Dardenne risks everything to save him, exposing herself as one of a pair of prophesied queens: a queen of light, and one of blood. To prove she is the Sun Queen, Rielle must endure seven elemental magic trials. If she fails, she will be executed as the Blood Queen…unless the trials kill the queen first.
One thousand years later, the legend of Queen Rielle is a fairy tale to Eliana Ferracora. A bounty hunter for the Undying Empire, Eliana believes herself untouchable―until her mother vanishes. To find her, Eliana joins a rebel captain and discovers that the evil at the empire’s heart is more terrible than she ever imagined.
As Rielle and Eliana fight in a cosmic war that spans millennia, their stories intersect, and the shocking connections between them ultimately determine the fate of their world―and of each other.
- Published: May 22, 2018
- Page Count: 512
- Genre: YA Fantasy
Alright time to share my thoughts, this is probably going to be insanely long just as a warning. Depends on how much I have to say after each “section”. What are the sections you ask? Good question. Mostly, it’s going to be whenever I take a break in reading. So, some sections might be longer than others or could be fewer. We’ll see as we go since I’m writing this as I’m reading it versus waiting until I’m finished.
Prologue through Chapter 2
So, we’ve seen three different moments in time thus far: Rielle after giving birth and sending her daughter away with an eight year old Simon, Rielle before she’s married Audric or killed him, and Eliana a thousand years in the future with the pendant that Rielle gave to her daughter before she sacrificed herself.
Immediately, I saw the comparison to Shadow and Bone. Rielle is a powerful individual like Alina, who does their universe’s magic different than everyone else. Alina could summon light while Rielle can summon all the elements without the need of an object. Rielle also made a deal with Corien (an angel), who carves power and even though we haven’t seen much of him yet I can see the comparison he’ll be to the Darkling. I have a feeling he used Rielle much in the way the Darkling used Alina through her amplifiers, since Corien can use mind control. And though she married Audric, he corrupts her in some way that led to Audric’s death. Something I’m sure the Darkling wanted to do with Mal but was unable to do. I hope Audric has more of a personality than Mal, but we’ll see. We have yet to actually encounter Audric.
When the story jumps to Eliana, she’s different than the rest of her family in that she doesn’t get harmed by jumping and can sense things they can’t. Immediately my mind went “oh it’s the princess, it’s Rielle’s daughter. Even if it’s a thousand years in the future, it’s her.” And though she’s a bounty hunter just trying to survive the new world, which I’m guessing it what the Darkling would’ve done had he won in Shadow and Bone. Especially if he hadn’t died after Alina lost her powers, since that was the true moment he became unhinged. If Alina had joined him, I have a feeling there would’ve been a balance as he was slightly better in her presence.
Now, I don’t know if that’s going to be true with Corien, but we’ll see. Especially when it gets realized that Eliana is Rielle’s daughter. The only thing that’s really been revealed is that she has the necklace of Audric. And he’s waiting for Eliana to return like the Darkling was waiting for Alina… if Corien’s still alive. I’m not sure. I have a feeling he’s not dead because he’s an angel and the way he’s framed is the villain. So, he must be alive in both ages. Though if he flirts with Eliana that might be odd, as Corien’s response to Rielle sacrificing herself is very, very similar to the Darkling’s response to Alina losing her powers. So, there’s some romantic relationship there.
Also, I wonder where Simon went. He tried to teleport himself with infant Eliana to another country when he was eight. She did get ripped out of his arms, so it is possible he came out somewhere else in the timeline or went to the right place. But considering he didn’t know how to travel in general, literally anything could’ve happened. So, I’m curious what happened to him but I have a feeling he’ll be back. Especially since he’s also hiding as well since he’s half angel half human… or something like that.
Anyways, like it so far in the way that it compares to Shadow and Bone, but so far there’s not much description of the world or characters so I can’t really imagine either. I have a feeling we’ll get more of that as the book goes.
So, the book stays in the pattern of going back and forth between Rielle and Eliana cutting each chapter off in the middle of the action. I’m going to talk about each of them separate so it’s not back and forth as the book was for understanding.
Rielle joins in the annual chase, basically a dangerous race with a large prize for the winner. Audric in on her team and it’s revealed that she is in love with him since they were children. Again, I’m reminded of Alina and Mal from Shadow and Bone with their relationship. During the race, Audric is attacked by seven assassins but Rielle acts to protect him. However, in doing so, she reveals to everyone that she can control multiple elements, something that her father has been trying to keep secret and suppressed for years. Not only that but someone starts talking to her mentally, I’m guessing it’s Corien… who is still reminding me a lot of the Darkling in the way he speaks to her. After the discovery, the King questions Rielle and decides they will put her through the seven trials to determine if she is the Blood Queen (girl prophesized to destroy the world) or the Sun Queen (girl prophesized to save the world). Considering what we learn in the prologue and the state of the world a 1000 years later, Rielle is the Blood Queen. She’s even called such by Eliana and Simon.
Meanwhile, Eliana feels guilty for causing the death of a boy who was aligned with the rebels. Harkan tries to tell her his dreams of them leaving the Empire for the last free country, but Eliana cannot stand to hear it because she sees herself only as a monster with hands covered in blood. Her brother, Remy, yells at her about it as well but comforts her when she breaks down over what she had done. Eliana is then tasked a few days later to find the Wolf. An individual that is right hand rebel to someone known as the Prophet. Eliana fails to find him, and upon returning home discovers that her mother has been kidnapped. The Wolf has also found Eliana and requests her to work with the rebels on a job. She agrees on the condition that Remy and Harkan come with. The Wolf is revealed to be Simon, though if he’s aware that Eliana is Rielle’s daughter, I don’t know. But we at least find out what happened with him in a way. Or at least that he is in the third age with Eliana, and joined the rebels which isn’t surprising considering what little introduction we got of him in the prologue.
Honestly, as much as I compare the book to Shadow and Bone, I don’t see that as a good thing. It makes Rielle’s section too predictable. While I enjoy reading it, my mind keeps wondering to the other series and where that one fell short (mainly in Alina choosing Mal over Nikolai or the Darkling). So, far it’s lined up almost one for one. Alina and Rielle have a power that hasn’t been seen in ages. Both of their powers were discovered while they were trying to save the guy they’ve been in love with since childhood. Powers that they have been trying to suppress for years, Alina by chose not to lose Mal and Rielle due to her father’s dictating influence after she accidentally killed her mother. Alina and Rielle were manipulated or used in some way by a “dark one” and to some capacity there’s a romantic history there. As I doubt that Corien is not in love with Rielle, his parting words in the epilogue are that of a lover not wanting to lose their significant other. I could be wrong but considering how similar the two stories are thus far in Rielle’s tale I have a feeling I’m right.
I don’t know if Furyborn will have the same outcome, though we already know how Rielle’s tale ends. She will marry and kill Audric. But I am curious to learn if it’s going to be spread out over the three book series or contained to just this one book. That’s the one element I’m not sure of at this point in time. But I have a feeling it’s going to be spread out considering the third book is named after Audric the Lightbringer. As for Eliana’s section, those keep me reading at this time since they remind me the least of Shadow and Bone. How long that reminds the case is yet to be seen. Probably by that point, I’ll be invested in it more so I won’t set the book series down.
But right now, I’m on the fence due to the overwhelming similarities… which is honestly something I never thought I’d say. Normally, I like finding similarities but then again I like to find where things differ. So, far there’s not much. Granted, the worlds are different in creatures, how magic is handled, and time jumping. But plot wise it’s not enough of a difference for me to get invested in, since I feel like I know how the story ends. Granted, I’ve only finished Chapter 9 at this point, and there are still 50+ chapters to go before Furyborn is over.
We learn more about the third age. Eliana believes that magic and angels were myths. Yet the Emperor is called the Undying, which again leads me to believe it’s Corien. And the Sun Queen never came, only Rielle the Blood Queen. Which leads me to believe that Eliana is the Sun Queen, since she’s the daughter of Rielle and Audric the Lightbringer.
Eliana helps Simon retrieve a concubine (later revealed to be the princess of Astavar) named Navi from a party where Eliana was supposed to turn in Simon to Rahzavel, the leader of Invictus which are the Emperor’s assassins. They end up killing many guards and as they turn to leave Rahzavel appears after Simon disappears. As Eliana fights him off, Simon reappears and helps her defeat Rahzavel at least temporarily by knocking him off a ledge. But it’s not before Rahzavel notices that Eliana heals instantly. During their escape, Harkan is separated from the group to buy them time after he tells Eliana that he loves her.
Simon and Navi take Remy and Eliana north for Astavar. One night while Eliana was on watch Simon disappeared, so she went off looking for him and ends up being hit over the back of the head. When she wakes, Simon is there waiting for her. She is naked and weaponless, and Simon notes that she is without injury. After clothed in moth eaten clothing, but still weaponless, she is shown the rebels in the Red Castle encampment that Remy and Eliana have been taken to. Eliana doesn’t look at the refugees as it’s how she’s made herself get through killing rebels over the years as a means for survival. I have a feeling Simon is aware that she might be the lost princess since one of the individuals mentions that Simon is fond of her, and she has the necklace from Rielle. Not that it’s mentioned.
Meanwhile, in the second age… Rielle like Alina is questioned for her abilities and her control over them. Then is going to be sent to have them tested. Where Alina was taught by the Darkling’s mother, Rielle is going to be put through the seven trials to see where her loyalties lie as well as if she’s the Blood Queen. And like Alina, Rielle basks in the idea of being special and loved.
Granted Alina didn’t immediately jump to that thought when she found out, she was more concerned about Mal. But in this instance, Audric isn’t being separated from Rielle and her life was in danger if she didn’t complete the trials, either they would kill her or she would be executed. So, in that respect Furyborn is different from Shadow and Bone. And in a way reminds me of Aelin doing trials in Throne of Glass, but Rielle doesn’t go the trial the way she could. Instead of proving mastery over earth, she runs until she reaches a cliff drop and finally does what she’s supposed to in the trial. Granted, she was drugged then forced to start the trial the second she woke with no preparation. Still the girl could think. But hey, at least I’m not dreading to read her sections now since they are different.
After the trial, Corien finally reveals his name to Rielle as she has earned the right to know it after surviving. Not only that they are able to talk to one another mentally. Sort of like how Alina and the Darkling do, but different in that Rielle doesn’t see Corien. She only hears him in her head, and feels his presence around her. He admits to knowing what the guards think of her and guides her as she is brought to the King after her trial. Where Audric and Ludivine help convince the King to make the remaining six trials public as well as allow Rielle time to practice and prepare. Mostly as show that they trust Rielle and she is the Sun Queen, though we know she is not. Corien doesn’t believe there will be another like her, which reminds me of the Darkling with his opinion of Alina.
Alright, it took me a few days to pick back up the book. But I finally got around to reading it again, and it’s separated enough from Shadow and Bone that I’m enjoying it now. And though I’m still slightly jarred by jumping back and forth between Rielle and Eliana, it’s not turning me off from reading it. Though on a few occasions, I have gone “wait who was that again?”, as they were introduced before flipping over to the other character. And it’s almost all action all the time in both parts. Keeps it interesting but sometimes hard to follow all the little details.
Rielle in this section does both the water and metal trials. She manages to piss off the guy in charge of the event at the end of the water trial. So, as punishment he makes a point to her that he’s in control of this. During the metal trial, he puts three children in cages that Rielle can either save or ignore. Of course, if she wants everyone to think she’s the Sun Queen not the Blood Queen, she has to rescue each of them from various parts of the death trap. A lot of individuals have issue with the fact that this was added to the trial. But Rielle manages to get through it and save the kids with a little help and encouragement from Corien. After she talks to Corien, and gets confirmation that he is an angel as well as sees what he looks like (the same image Eliana sees but the eyes are different). She freaks out and demands that Corien gets out of her head before she leaves to the gardens, where she runs into and almost has sex with Audric. However, this is interrupted by Lu’s father.
Eliana, on the other hand, cannot stand to be around the rebels. And after hearing one of their stories of fleeing the empire, Eliana decides to leave. She takes Remy with her to one of the Empire outposts with plans to exchange information about the rebels for her safety and mother’s rescue. Remy leaves realizing what she plans to do. As she enters the outpost, she is confronted by one of the Lords with pure black eyes. He treats her to dinner, and she shares some information with him but not much. Though it’s enough for them to find the rebels and attempt to smoke them out of their underground compound. Eliana learns that the emperor’s men with the black eyes heal instantly like her, but are also plagued with hunger and lust that can never be satisficed. She attempts to seduce the lord to get him on her side, and ends up face to face (mentally) with the Emperor who realizes her immediately as Rielle’s daughter.
Simon arrives and destroys the Empire Outpost, taking Eliana out of their before it collapses and tells her that every death inside is her fault. Bringing her total amount of deaths at her hands to 93. As the rebels were going to raid and save those individuals the following day but couldn’t thanks to Eliana. She cannot stand the thought of another 325 deaths on her hand, so she races back to the rebel base and wipes out the Empire soldiers with bombs, thus allowing the rebels inside to escape. However, she is wounded in the explosion. But the burns heal shortly after they were first tended to by Navi and Simon. They reach a city where the rebels have a base of operations set up. Eliana is spat on for the deaths at her hand, then the group is commanded to bathe. Remy goes with Eliana and Navi, where Eliana is forced to reveal that she healed a while ago. And Navi understands why Eliana has remained quiet about this as either the rebels or Empire would use this knowledge to make her a weapon. Remy suspects that the emperor’s men are angels, but Eliana is not like them.
I’m curious if Simon knows who Eliana is. He desperately wanted to know if Eliana had told the emperor of her location, but also helps her as if he still believes she’s injured. Or that could be him pretending along with her. Considering he knew Rielle, I would imagine he recognizes Eliana to some degree like Corien did. Though it’s still not confirmed if it’s him. But undying, angel… similar features save for the eyes, I’m guessing it’s him. Blue for Rielle, but black for Eliana. And he’s pissed. But she’s saved from dealing with him due to Simon and the rebels arriving at the outpost.
While elements of the book still remind me of Shadow and Bone series, it’s different enough at this point where it’s made the book enjoyable to read. Though so many of the elements are similar enough that I think I can predict the rest of the book to some degree. Here is what I’m thinking at this point:
- Eliana won’t discover she’s Rielle’s daughter until almost the end of the book, and maybe start displaying some magic more than just healing.
- Rielle will complete all the trials, leaving two years left to cover in the other two books. But something will go wrong in the trials either due to Rielle’s lack of control (since she has slipped during the three trials at one point) or Corien’s influence.
- Audric and Rielle will form some kind of a relationship. Either the engagement to Lu is called off or she dies. Because I can see both happening, though I’m leaning towards the latter. Granted, we know the two get together; married and have Eliana.
- The angels will break out from the deep with the gate breaking. I mean we know this happens since Corien is there shortly after Rielle gives birth to Eliana. But if the gate falls at the end of this book or during the start of the next I’m not sure. I’m leaning towards end of this book as it would be a good set up for the next book in the trilogy.
Eliana starts hunting down the individuals behind the missing women after she is informed of it by their current hostess. She goes to the fighting pits and starts to feels something is seriously off. Simon and Navi show up, but three women go missing before Eliana’s eyes. She gets pissed that they are trying to take her back to the apartment, and goes off to find whoever is behind the disappearances. However, the assassin she thought they killed during Navi’s rescue appears and tries to kill her. Simon keeps him away, but during the chaos Navi and Eliana are kidnapped to a compound of angel worshippers that have a wraith in charge of collecting women. Several days have passed and a wraith on the side of Red Castle appears to Eliana and tells her everything. That her mother was Rielle, that her mother was in a romantic relationship with Corien, a bit about wraiths and angels, and that Simon was aware the entire time who Eliana was. Eliana is freed with the assistance of the wraith, and gets Navi out of the prison as well. On their way out, the wraith helping Eliana discovers the hunting wraith has returned and the two separate. Simon appears with the one missing knife of hers, and saves her from a guard. I can’t wait to see the explosion of Eliana when she confronts Simon about all of this.
Rielle, on the other hand, has to deal with the fall out from almost having sex with Audric in the garden and being caught. Literally everyone is aware of it. Including Lu, who is more than okay with it and encourages the two to be together. Going so far as to bring Rielle to a healer, Simon’s father, to get birth control. Before the three have a conversation regarding it, Rielle has to complete the shadow trial, which ends up also being the light trial as she displays both powers during it. But since she threatened the Archon during the trial, she has to get lectured by the king. Only for it to be interrupted with report that three posts were slaughtered with only two survivors from each reporting similar stories. This holds Audric off from wanting to have an affair with Rielle even with Lu’s blessing.
However, when Rielle goes to get a breath of fresh air. Lu’s father comes and poisons her before tossing her off a mountain. But she survives as one of the godsbeast come to her rescue. The very one that is on the necklace that Eliana wears with Audric’s (her father’s) image. The King and rest of council upon her return want to forgo the rest of the trials, but she makes them put her through the fire trial regardless since it’s the element that killed her mother when she had no control. Understandable that she would want to do this to prove she’s not the Blood Queen (which we know she is and Eliana is the Sun Queen).
Audric surprises Rielle one night, and the two have sex. Rielle almost losing control of her powers at first while Audric is fingering her. But there’s no sign of that loss of control when they actually have sex shortly thereafter. And she makes note that for once she didn’t have a thought about Corien. Though the two haven’t kissed, she still imaged him doing so… including right before she was drugged and tossed off a mountain. And we know they later kiss from the vision of the past that Eliana is shown.
I’m still curious how that’s all going to work out. It’s kind of like the Darkling in the second book of Shadow and Bone, having shadowed conversations with Alina that are physical and not physical at the same time. But somehow Rielle is going to marry Audric, and as he dies it’s hinted that he still loves her even though she kills him as it’s believed according to the chapter opening segments that his final words were ‘I love you, Rielle.’ So, either she’s with both of them or she’s deceiving one of them at the very end. And I’m not entirely sure which it is.
The Wraith, Zahra, informs Eliana what was done by the Fidelia (angel worshippers) to Navi. They were attempting to transform her into a monster, since Corien has been unsuccessful in resurrecting angels after the passing of Rielle. All the remaining angels that were not restored to a body are now wraiths, which are invisible to humans. But Simon is able to hear Zahra, and then admits the truth regarding Eliana.
Which is just confirmation of what Zahra said, and that he knew Audric and Rielle. Eliana still doesn’t fully believe it as the truth, but they are interrupted by Rahzavel (the assassin) arriving and setting the cabin they were hiding at on fire. Eliana with the help of Zahra rescue Hob, Navi, and Remy after getting free of Simon, who wanted to leave them behind in order to protect Eliana. They flee North only to be met by Navi’s brother, Malik, and learn that Simon wasn’t killed by captured. Eliana makes the decision to save him as she couldn’t for her mother or Harkan.
Eliana manages to find him only to face off against Rahzavel. She manages to beat him with the help of Zahra, and frees Simon. He has been temporarily blinded and carved up. I feel so bad for the guy. His entire life has been about finding and protecting Eliana. He even cared a scrap of her baby blanket with him to remind him of her after they were ripped apart. As they escape, they are trapped between a battle of Astavar and the Empire with it’s monsters. One of which is Rozen, the woman who raised Eliana and Remy’s mother. Eliana is left with no choice but to kill her, and in her final moments Rozen recognizes Eliana and begs for her suffering to end. As she screams, her magic wakes up and Corien senses her.
Eliana manages to defeat the Empire fleet and wakes three days later, where the king of Astavar wants to meet with her to discuss what happened. Simon also reveals that after time traveling a thousand years he is no longer part angel and the mark on his back was removed by the Prophet. Also during Rielle’s death, magic left the world entirely.
Rielle faces her final trial (fire) only to learn that her mentor is in the center, and if she doesn’t reach him then he’ll be burned away. Every dead end she reaches will result in a section of the maze leading to Tal being set ablaze. Rielle is not allowed to bring Tal’s casting (item he uses to cast magic) with her. She manages to get to the center of the maze only to find they recreated her childhood home where Rielle’s mother was burned to death. She gets inside only to discover the ceiling has collapse on Tal, and he can’t move. The two pray to help steady Rielle and two things happen: firebird feathers appear around them and Corien has arrived.
Corien is controlling the minds of Lu’s father’s soldiers to attack, and will only stop if Rielle comes to him. She leaves Tal behind and races off to find Corien. She manages to save Audric, but Lu is tossed off the mountain. When she finally reaches Corien, he threatens to kill everyone in the cave if Rielle doesn’t leave with him. She refuses and burns Corien. However, this also results in the death of her father and the king. Audric finds her. Rielle admits what she did, and that Corien is an angel who had been behind the attack. Though Corien leaves, he reads her mind and confronts her to lying to Audric that she would never leave him. And at her Sun Queen coronation, Lu appears and reveals that she’s an angel to Rielle. She tells Rielle that Lu knows Rielle lied to Audric about his father’s death, and that Rielle needs to play along about bringing her back to life even though she didn’t. Rielle hears the death count and knows they only died because Corien wanted her, so the blood is on her hands. As they ask her which queen she is, though she thinks Blood Queen, says Sun Queen.
Ludivine admits the truth to Audric and Rielle, and let’s Rielle know that angels cannot take human form without assistance. Which is why Corien needs Rielle for the rest of their kind still trapped in the deep. Lu vows to protect them and help them in any way against Corien. And one of their first tasks will be to go to the gate and access it. Audric also asks Rielle to tell her if Corien ever makes contact again. Something she agrees to, though she notes that he knows very little of her lies. I have a feeling there’s more to what happened between her and Corien then we are led on to believe. Or thoughts she’s having that we aren’t informed of. Because short of a few conversations that were fairly neutral and causal, there’s not much to hint at a betrayal other than what we know from the future.
Furyborn by Claire Legrand was hard to get into for me. I didn’t start truly enjoying the book until over a hundred pages in as I kept seeing Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo in almost every page. The book does split off so they don’t follow the same storyline though there are still similarities between characters, which allowed me to actually get into the book.
Until that point I had a hard time getting into the world and characters or imaging any of it, because my attention was split between this book and the other. Even though we know how Rielle’s story ends I didn’t find that ruined my enjoyment of the book. Instead, it made me want to know how the hell she ended up at that point of literally everyone hating her and her helping to destroy the world. Since I have a feeling it’s not so black and white as it’s made out to be. The seeds are there for sure, but we still don’t know enough at the end how she arrives at that destination.
As for the predictions I made around the 2/3 mark in the book… They were:
- Eliana won’t discover she’s Rielle’s daughter until almost the end of the book. This is true. She didn’t learn who her mother was until almost the end of the book. The last chapters of her were her coming to terms with that fact and being informed of it from the wraith and Simon.
- Rielle will complete all the trials. I don’t know if she technically finished the fire trial, since it was interrupted by Corien. I did think something would go wrong in the trial, and I was correct there.
- Audric and Rielle will form some kind of a relationship. Either the engagement to Lu is called off or she dies. Well they agree to an affair and Lu did die technically twice. Once when she was sixteen then possessed by an angel, and then again when Lu was thrown off a mountain. As for her engagement with Audric, I’m not sure where that remains. But Audric did ask Rielle to come to his bed chambers that night after his father’s funeral.
- The angels will break out from the deep with the gate breaking. They haven’t fully broken out of the gate. But there are a few dozen who have occurring to Lu. And Corien very much wants to use Rielle to do so as well as help angels gain bodies, since they are without those at this time.
Overall, I would give Furyborn a 3.25 star rating out of 5. It’s good, but there are just too many elements that hold me back from giving it a higher rating.
For one, the story always cuts back and forth between key moments in the middle of things. I would’ve preferred one event finished before cutting to the other timeline. As that would help with not flipping back and forth as much to remember who’s who or what’s going on. Since you got life or death trials happening at the same moment the other is being drugged or kidnapped. And my goodness, I don’t think there was really a moment where Eliana wasn’t being drugged or kidnapped from one side of the country to the other. Or watching someone die in front of her. She wasn’t very active in her own story, as she was dragged along for most of it and the moments she acted were moments that things fell more apart. I’m hoping now that it’s revealed who her mother is, the next book is going to focus more on her learning her powers.
The other being as I already said, it’s extremely similar to Shadow and Bone. The entire beginning of Rielle’s story is almost identical to Alina’s until she starts the trials. After that the characters just fall into the same tropes. Audric is Mal, while Corien is the Darkling. And I guess Lu is Magda in this comparison as she instructs and guides Rielle as Magda did for Alina.
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