This is my first review where I have decided to review the whole series. I normally include a blurb but it would be too lengthy to include all four of them so I’ll just drop the blurb for book 1 below so you can see what we’re dealing with here. You can find a link to all 4 books below.
We’re talking fantasy, we’re talking epic fights, we’re talking romance at its best.
A violent storm. Unending night . . . Violet Archers is running through the darkness for her vey life.
A single spark blazes, calling to her. It is her chance at salvation. It is a connection beyond any she could have ever imagined. And it leads her to a lonely cabin in the woods.
But when Violet wakes she has no memory of how she got there. She is disturbingly ill. And a chilling evil creeps through her veins. Worse still, her host, the tall and powerful Elijah Stone, is intent on killing her. Yet a cataclysmic bond, neither can deny, stays Elijah’s hand.
Radiants, immortals of the light, have been warring with their enemies, the Shadows, for millennia. Now, twisted together by fate, the two adversaries must embark on a journey. One on which their very lives depend. Unfortunately for Violet, she does not know who she can trust, especially when it comes to her guide, Elijah.
But it turns out that Violet and Elijah are not alone on their quest. They soon realize they are being hunted along the way. It seems Violet has a dark debt to settle.
And someone very dark, indeed, is about to collect his due.
Before we start:
I decided to review this series, even though it is very much intended for audiences 18+ (due to mature and explicit content) because, like myself, a lot of young adult readers are also adults. Like me, some of you might read NA (new adult) and adult books, so I wanted to share this as it’s something some of you may enjoy.
Summarise a whole series? Without spoilers? You’ll have to bear with. This a four-book series and being as it was for adults, it was longer than the usual books I read, nearly double the length compared to some YA I’ve read in the past. However, despite it being a lengthy read to cover all four books, I devoured them in about a week – just under. Yeah, I went on a three-day break from my own writing to finish these books. Not even sorry. This will tell you how I felt about this series more than any grading I could ever give.
After reading the series, I can now confirm it holds one my new favourite literary romance pairings. It was utterly sexy, ridiculously intense, beautiful and awe-inspiring. If nothing else, read it for the love people!
Violet is the main character who wakes up in the forest and found by Elijah. She has no clue as to who she is. She’s been infected with an illness by once thought lore, the umbra, and we find out she has a bond with Elijah called the ‘Vinculum’ – a special bond between two ‘prisms’ whom the Radiants believe will be key to saving their people from the Shadows. As a Radiant, Violet has lost her light and is instead hosting this darkness. It is clear from the blurb that the Radiants and the Shadows are enemies, so this brings into question which side Violet is now on.
There is a lot of intensity in the first instance. Initially we are thrust into this overwhelming bond with Elijah which, in all honesty, I was a bit like ‘ugh, here we go with the over the top-ness’, but actually, there are reasons for this and it’s done perfectly for the story. (See the spoiler section at the end of this post for more info!). In addition to this, we are in a mad race to escape the Prince of Darkness who comes to get Violet which is made all the more confusing because there isn’t time for characters to explain what is going on. As the narration is in Violet’s 1st person voice, we literally know nothing. Gah! It was so frustrating but deliciously executed.
Talking of delicious, while I wasn’t necessarily a fan of the ‘explicit content’ in book 1, which had nothing to do with the writing but all to do with my reservations on certain characters - I was a major fan of it in the remaining books. That was some hot stuff. * If you don’t mind discovering some key things, the spoiler section has my more detailed thoughts on book 1.
I’ll quickly discuss characters as I’ve done before. I’m only picking a handful as there were many!
Violet is awesome. We get to know her backwards, as in, you only know who Violet really is in book 2. Violet is very strong willed, believable as a person and consistent. Her strength of character was still there even in the more. . .explicit scenes, shall we say. She wasn’t some weak and helpless damsel in distress. Freaking adored her.
Elijah is the Prism, which, I’ll be honest, I’m not entirely sure what they do except serve the Radiants for a 1000 years in the hope they meet their other half and then save their people from the Shadow people. I probably should know what it is that they actually do, but I was mightily distracted by all these intense connections the author kept throwing at me! Anyway, Elijah didn’t hit the spot for me, especially as the series went on, but I do want to know his backstory and what happens next to him. Especially after that ending of book 4.
Prince of Darkness. Oh Lordy. Where do I start? Well, I can’t. Too many spoilers.
Killian is Violet’s guard and has a bigger role in book 2, especially with understanding who Violet is. He was a bit clingy perhaps? I’m not sure if that’s the right way to describe him, but he dropped off the radar through the series and I definitely think he deserves more story time.
Maxim is a Shadow and appointed to take care of Violet in the dark manor when she is there on behalf of the Radiants (book 2 onwards). I think I went on a rollercoaster of a ride with Maxim! The author certainly had me changing my view every damn book. Just when I thought I had him figured. Bam. Off she went, changing my mind again.
The Femme Fatales were a weird addition in book 1 I thought, but stick with them, I was quite fond by the end.
Was it gripping?:
Read all four extremely quick, so yes. Book 1 had you hooked because you simply didn’t know anything thanks to Violet’s memory loss. Cliff-hanger book 1 makes you want to read book 2 and from that point, there was no way you couldn’t not finish the series. I did think the first half of book 3 dragged a bit but I am a rather impatient reader and I was keen to get back to Violet’s and *withhold name here* romance. Wanting to find out certain things kept me going though and then it picked up pace until the very end of the series where I was most definitely not teary. Nope. Not at all.
This book is perfect if you’re looking for:
✓ ADULT, 18+, epic – truly epic – romance
✓ Connected to above, some really steamy scenes
✓ Extremely interesting premise of Radiants vs Shadows, light and dark, good and evil, and all that jazz
✓ Engaging storytelling
✓ Focus on an overall plot through characters rather than the world they’re in
I do believe the author has suggested that she might consider spin-off books with some other characters. I am down for this! From what I've seen, she tends to be more active on Instagram if you want to follow and find out updates on this.
Fun Fact: when I realised some of the names of these characters, I had to smile. In the current trilogy I’m writing, Bloodline Alliance, two of my characters are called Elijah and Killian. What are the odds? Especially with a name like Killian!?
A small note. . .if you read this book and like it, consider leaving a review. Reviews are immensely helpful to authors and helps support their work. It also helps other readers decide if the book might be for them!
All four books are available on Amazon and they're FREE if you're a Kindle Unlimited user!
How beautiful are these covers?!
Spoiler section – this section contains some thoughts and questions, and will contain key information throughout the series. You have been warned!
Ok, not a fan of Elijah. Wasn’t particularly enamoured with him in book 1 to be honest but when you realise Violet and the Prince of Darkness are made for each other, it kinda made sense. It didn’t go into detail about what Elijah did to avoid ‘passing on’ to become an archangel and I feel this would have helped me understand better because how they heck did he feel a link with Violet?! Was it the events that falsified his status, that gave him his link to Violet? I’m not sure if this was explained and I just missed it in my haste or not, but I really want to know. I hope the author does another book about Elijah. I do feel sorry for him. . .a little bit.
Let’s discuss Violet and Elijah’s bond in book 1. After reading book 2, I almost felt like Violet was tricked by Elijah, rightly or wrongly, and in a way, taken advantage of? Violated? Not quite abused, as everything was consensual, BUT, she was the other half to the Prince of Darkness. They had shared this intense and unique connection and then because her memories were lost and this so-called bond with Elijah was left, they acted upon this. Pretty sure this contributed to my dislike of Elijah after book 2 because surely he knew? How could he not know his bond with her wasn’t a true one after what he did later on the series (which I won’t divulge in the interest in keeping some things spoiler free)? Even if we give Elijah the benefit of the doubt, that he was truly just wanting this bond between them and believed in it, then he could have taken more care with the fact that she wasn’t truly ‘Violet’ as she had no previous memories, so I think it was unfair of him. Again, I take this with a pinch of salt because of the story setting, it worked, and Violet is mature and focuses on where she should be which is with the Prince of Darkness. If you took away the fantasy setting however, it would be abundantly clear she was taken advantage of. She only wanted Elijah because the bond said she should, not through choice. She frequently made reference to not actually liking the guy!
What the heck happened to Killian!?
Characters I think the author should write spin off books for: Elijah, Killian, Cord and the Contessa, G and Daphne, Adriel, Maxim and Lilly. Just a few, ey? I’d be happy for like, one book to encompass all of the above if necessary 😊