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S. M. Boyce is a lifelong writer with a knack for finding adventure and magic.
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on Jan. 31, 2013 :
Loved this book and book one in the series as well, very well written with compelling characters and a believable setting that doesn't rely on clichés as some of the books I've read recently have. Really looking forward to the next book in the series.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)
on Nov. 12, 2012 :
I received an Advanced Review Copy of this book. I was encouraged to write a review. Since I always write reviews this was a win-win for me! Yay!
I absolutely loved the first book in this series. The world building is amazing. I’m sure there are others, but the only books that come to mind with better world building in this genre are The Lord of the Rings books. This book picks up with Braedon and Kara back in The Vagabond’s village. They are training and waiting until they need to go to the Gala. The Gala is where all the Yakona kingdoms (except the Stele, of course) will meet together to sign a treaty and celebrate. This is where things got boring to me. From 20-40% it was predictable and I dreaded opening it up! Of course the Gala goes all wrong and Kara and Braedon are in trouble again and this felt boring to me too. How? I don’t know, but something didn’t work for me. Maybe it was just Kara pushing Braedon away over and over again saying the same stupid stuff. So you are wondering why it gets 5 stars then? It is because the rest of the book was so full of awesome that it completely negates any annoyingness at the beginning.
I convinced myself to keep reading and (this is a long book) from between 40-95% I was absolutely entranced again! There were so many twists and turns. I mean, an Isen? Ahhh! It cannot be! And Braedon must go back to the Stele and I really didn’t want him to go! But he had to. And the cat is out of the bag! Everyone knows everything. Except Kara. Kara only knows what people feel like telling her. How can Kara possibly know who to trust? They are all conniving behind her back and trying to get her power! Niccoli plays a bigger role and Dierdre is back. I can’t tell what her end game is even after the epilogue!
I am going to say right now, that what I wrote above is quite possibly the worst synopsis ever, but there is so much that I can’t tell you.
From Richard to Braedon: “You are and always will be my son. That you ever doubted me is my failure and mine alone.”
Richard talking about Blood Gavin: “He led a campaign against the squirrels once for moving into an abandoned attic when he was six. In his mind, they invaded his home.”
(reviewed long after purchase)
on Nov. 06, 2012 :
Firstly I’d like to thank the author for sending me this eBook to read and give an honest review. This is the second book in the Grimoire Trilogy. I was hoping for good things from this because I had really enjoyed the first and I’m pleased to say I wasn’t disappointed – this one was even better! There was plenty of action, weird creatures and magical lands but also more romance this time round and that just made it the perfect read for me.
I quickly fell back into the story and once again was transported to the magical world of Ourea. I enjoyed the sparring between Kara and Braeden, in fact I enjoyed every moment between the two of them! Their feelings were a real dilemma for both of them and watching them fight against it was fascinating and frustrating all at the same time, forbidden love is always something I love to read about.
Kara’s strength from the previous book carried through to this one and continued throughout, she seemed to feel more comfortable with herself and her abilities which was good to see. She had so many difficult choices to make and there were times when I thought she had made the wrong decision. I wasn’t sure about Braeden in the previous book but this time I knew exactly how I felt about him, there were a few reasons for this but I don’t want to give that particular part of the story away so you’ll have to find out for yourself.
Once again the writing pulled me in, it’s amazing how such a fantastical world can feel so real and believable. The storyline kept me on my toes, it shocked me on more than one occasion but only in a good way. One of the bigger shocks came about when I discovered more about Kara’s family history, every time I thought I had it all figured out it would turn around and go in a completely different direction.
The epilogue really intrigued me and I can’t wait to revisit Ourea in the final installment Heritage to find out more.
This is an imaginative book filled with magic and deadly creatures but lightened with a hint of romance.
(reviewed the day of purchase)
on Nov. 05, 2012 :
How the muffins did S.M. Boyce come out with Ourea? Seriously, I can't contain myself from gushing how incredibly amazing this place is. It feels so vividly real, but more than that, you can sense the history and greatness of this world. Every single detail of this place, like the creatures, the landscapes, the Bloods of each Yakona race and the Vagabond is what makes it so utterly fantastic.
The first book in the Grimoire Trilogy was a fascinating introduction to the story, but I must admit that Treason was more than I dared hope. It was fierce, action packed at every single corner and full of surprises with twists and turns. It actually felt like a very exciting roller-coaster ride with constants "WHAT?". I loved it.
So we get to see that Kara has been training very hard at the Vagabond's Village, along with Braeden, her Grimoire and with Flick (her pet who can teleport). She has grown stronger, more confident with her powers and clearly not the same person who we met at the beginning of the first book. Even though she has a huge responsibility by being the Vagabond and having to search peace with all the Yakona races, she is not alone with her quest.
What can I say? I love Braeden Drakonin and I will always root for him to be with Kara. He is a strong fighter, handsome and a good person despite of being the heir to the throne of the Stele who are considered to be evil thanks to the ruling of Blood Carden. I could go on and on about how perfectly imperfect Braeden is but you just have to meet him and see for yourself.
Kara's personality is something I admire from her but honestly, most of the times I just wanted to jump right into the book and control her so she wouldn't push Braeden away. Of course I understand her reasons, a vagabond can't fall in love, for those who are closely dear to a vagabond tend to become targeted by his/her enemies. Still, this relationship was the main reason I had to keep my twitchy fingers from skipping parts where there was no Kara-Braeden thing going on (I would've said Karden but it sounds too close to Carden, maybe because they are wickedly yummy together, no?). Anyway, I'm glad I didn't because I would've regretted very much for missing valuable parts of the book.
Basically, just into the first five chapters you find yourself hooked with the story because there's a lot going on. From a beautiful Gala with stunning performances of the Yakona races, like dancing and singing, to a chaotic battle that leaves you biting your nails off there is absolutely no way whatsoever of stopping until you finish the last chapter.
Treason is an epic read you don't want to miss and I bet the next installment will be just as great, I can't wait to read it.
*Review based on an ARC received through the author, all thoughts are my own*
(reviewed within a month of purchase)
on Nov. 03, 2012 :
First, I have to get this out of my system. I began reading this and my only reaction was OHMYGOD! Squee! *dinosaur hand motions* I was in total fangirl mode. Heck, I still am. I love these books. I love the characters. And I love S.M. Boyce. Seriously. I am Boyce's biggest fan and she better realize that. Okay! On to my review!
At first, I thought the beginning started out slow, but as things started picking up speed I realize that it's actually perfect. The book picks up speed so fast that the slower beginning gives you time to get your breath before the plunge.
The middle is all go-go-go and I loved it! S.M. Boyce is a master at her craft, and just when you think things are slowing down, something goes wrong! Just when they are "safe" someone turns out to be a foe that I, at least, never expected. Not even in my most cynical moments did I expect the turns that this second book takes.
The end. Ooh, the end. The epilogue is just like... I want to be happy about that, I really do. And I was. And I felt terrible for it. The end is perfect, but gah! I want more. Like now. But the next book (Heritage) doesn't come out until next fall. *sniff* I have to wait.
I absolutely loved this book and find nothing at all to nit pick about. Nothing stood out to me as being an egregious error, nor do I remember finding any spelling/grammar errors. (And I had an ARC.)
Definitely Five out of Five stars.
(reviewed the day of purchase)
on Oct. 14, 2012 :
This is a review of an ARC copy of Treason
I don’t think I’ve had as great of a reaction to any book as I have this one; well not since I read The Grimoire: Lichgates back in February. S.M. Boyce comes back with book two of the Grimoire trilogy, and comes back STRONG! I honestly didn’t think Lichgates could be topped on my all-time favorites list. Treason surpassed it with flying colors.
For those readers who have read Lichgates already, they know how talented Boyce is in creating the world of Ourea. For those who don’t know, let me tell you. Boyce’s world-building skills haven’t diminished since book one. They may even have gotten better. Ourea, all of its kingdoms, hidden nooks and crannies, the glimpses of the real world that the reader gets, they all show such beauty while having constant danger everywhere. Ourea is a dangerous place. It goes with the territory. Despite the danger it’s a place I’d love to visit if it were to be real.
What I also enjoyed were the new characters in Treason. All the old favorites from Lichgates are back as well, don’t worry about missing them. They come back even better this time! The complexities of all S.M.’s characters allow for plot twists, extensive and unfolding histories, hope and fear for the future. Each character has an agenda and each character influences others whether they know it or not.
It’s this complex world and character system that makes Treason, and The Grimoire Trilogy in general, what it really is. It’s an epic movie unfolding before the reader’s eyes. I don’t know if I was really reading the words on a page, as much as I was watching vivid images play in my head. I couldn’t not turn the page even when a chapter was over. I wanted to keep reading in order to find out what was in store for Kara, Braeden, and the rest of my favorite characters (especially the adorable fur-ball Flick).
I could go on for hours pointing out what I loved about this book. I also am confident in saying I have nothing negative to say…nothing at all…about this book. There are plot twists galore. There’s also one MAJOR twist that even after reading it a few times to make sure I read it correctly I still didn’t see coming. I can’t believe it really. It was so seamlessly and stealthily thrown in there, it was like “*POW* I’m a ninja.” If I had the space to do so, I would have been flipping and bouncing off the walls of my room. No lie.
I only have one last thing to say. Boyce, please for the love of all things bookily holy…please go write Heritage. I NEED to complete my journey through Ourea with Kara!!!!!
(reviewed the day of purchase)