At times, this book felt predictable. And some times I wanted to shake Aurora out of frustration. That being said, I did really enjoy this book.
16-year-old Aurora Darlington is an orphan. Mistreated by her adopted family and bullied at school, she dreams of running away and being free. But when she is kidnapped and dragged through a portal into a magical world, suddenly her old life doesn’t seem so bad.
Avalonia is a dangerous land ruled by powerful mages and a cruel, selfish queen who will do anything to control all seven kingdoms—including killing anyone who stands in her way. Thrust headlong into this new, magical world, Aurora’s arrival sets plans in motion that threaten to destroy all she holds dear.
With the help of a young fae, a magical pegasus, and a handsome mage, Aurora journeys across Avalonia to learn the truth about her past and unleash the power within herself. Kingdoms collide as a complicated web of political intrigue and ancient magic lead Aurora to unravel a shocking secret that will change her life forever.
I came across this book on Netgalley, and the first thing that caught my eye was the cover (I mean look at it, it’s GORGEOUS.) Then that blurb, well, obviously I had to request it to see if it was any good. And it was definitely was! Aurora’s home life is not the best; with an aunt and cousin who hate her, an uncle who basically ignores her existence, and being bullied at school, life isn’t easy. And then she and her family go to this mansion where she is kidnapped and taken through this portal into a magical world, where the real story begins. It is in this world that we learn the truth about Aurora’s family and past, and that she is actually the Princess of Illiandra. It is also here where we meet Rafe (a sort of Robin Hood in that world if you will), who she becomes immediately enamored with (kind of predictable).
I liked Aurora, and for a good part of the book I felt sorry for her, and was rooting for her. But as the story went on, it seemed she was more focused on Rafe and “does he like me or is he just saving me because he owed my father a debt” than on the fact that her aunt, the cruel queen, wants to kill her. That began to irritate me.
“How will you ever know the magnitude of courage you are capable of if you never experience the hopelessness of fear?” -24%
Another thing that began to frustrate me was the fact that almost all the action seemed to happen because Aurora made stupid decisions to go investigate something or because her ego was hurt, and as a consequence she almost gets killed several times. I couldn’t help but feel that she was very childish throughout the entirety of the book.
For the most part this book was predictable (even down to the real identity of Rafe—I called that halfway through), but I truly did enjoy this book and I am looking forward to the second book coming out because I do want to see where Aurora’s journey takes her.
Rating: 3.5 stars
I received an arc copy from Wise Ink Creative Publishing (through Netgalley) in exchange for an honest review.