Elise Kova really did a great job writing her first novel, and I'm glad to hear it was a success.
So the story follows our main protagonist, Vhalla Yarl, a humble library apprentice in the Solaris Empire, who lodges in the palace. She lives a peaceful existence there where she surrounds herself with a few good friends and lots of books. But her whole life is turned upside down one stormy night when one of the princess returns from the war front badly wounded. Vhalla spares all her energy trying to find a way to save him, and in the process, she unlocks a power she never knew she had. Follow Vhalla on an unforgettable journey, where much heroism must come from an unlikely library apprentice, who's more than she seems.
I loved the dynamic relationship Vhalla and Aldrick had versus his younger brother, Baldair. I honestly didn't really care that much for Baldair, at first, but by the end of the book I really warmed up to him. But I definitely could see the Loki/Thor inspirations for both Princes, and I LOVED that.
I liked Vhalla well enough, except when she threw these childish tantrums, but Aldrick was my favorite character, because he was so misunderstood. At first, I didn't like him at all or the way he talked down to Vhalla in the beginning. But as their relationship progressed, I grew a lot closer to him as Vhalla did. It was a lovely experience as a reader.
As for what I liked most about Vhalla's character, I had to respect how she went from disowning magic to accepting it. She finally crawled out of her comfort zone to see the "other side" of magic, with a little help from the Phantom, of course. ;) And I felt so sorry for her when her closest friends bashed sorcerers based on their own narrow-minded opinions about them. And what really aggravated me was when Sareem, who knew about her "magic secret", was browsing up a way to Eradicate her magic. I couldn't help but shake my head and say "Wow. What a Jack ***!"
The only critique I have for Elise is to watch out for repetition. Hopefully the later books are much better with handling this. And there were places where commas were needed, but the story as a whole was very entertaining, and I thank Elise for writing it for us to read and enjoy. :)
And I read and memorized a few memorable quotes, but this one really struck a chord with me, and I know this is foreshadowing something between Vhalla and Aldrick, without a doubt. I'll leave off my review with this epic quote from Air Awakens:
"Fire needs air to live. Air fuels fire, stokes it, and makes it burn brighter and hotter than it ever could alone. But too much air will snuff it completely, just as too many flames will consume all the air. They are far greater than the sum of their parts together, but are equally as dangerous to each other's existence." - Master Mohned
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