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review 2018-08-06 04:12
An Amazing Start to a New Series
Furyborn - Claire Legrand

It wouldn't be an exaggeration if I said that this book has literally garnered all the hype in the world. Almost anywhere you turn, no matter what social media site you're using, it seems as though everyone is talking about this book. At times, such hype can be alarming since it can lead to disappointment if something doesn't live up to your expectations. However, Furyborn is a book which definitely withstood the hype test in my eyes and is deserving of all the commotion it has been making.


First and foremost, I have to say that this was a very unique book to read. Not only was the premise and style inventive (I really love the world this story is taking place in), but the fashion of jumping between separate-but-connected timelines was refreshing. Such a unique style of story-telling is uncommon for my reading taste so it was strange at first but also very fun to jump into.


Furyborn's cast of characters were also very fun. For the first half of the book, I didn't particularly care for Eliana but I really liked Rielle. However, as the story continued and readers were given further perspective into character's backstories and characterization, I began to quickly warm up to Eliana. Then, by the end of the book, she was undoubtedly my favorite character! Though she has a long journey to take in terms of growth, she is a character whose character arc I immensely look forward to. I am likewise intrigued by Rielle and her character arc, especially since the various time frames this story is told through hints at multiple directions that have yet to be realized. I'm very interested in seeing how such paths come into play, and if they are as good/bad as the future makes them out to be.


Overall, I thought this was a great first book in the series. I look forward to reading the sequel!

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review 2018-06-11 04:21
Furyborn - Claire Legrand

I read a few chapters of this months ago and just KNEW I had to have it. Sooooo into my preorder list it went. When it arrived in my kindle at 12:04 a.m. I was giddy. Lately, the preorders that are finally coming in have been AWESOME!!... more on the others to come BUT back to Furyborn....


This one sucked me in from the very start and held my attention throughout. That alone is a minor miracle at times. The pacing was spot on- It wasn't too fast as to feel rushed and disjointed and it definitely was not too slow- leaving you counting pages, hoping that it would just end already and put you out of your misery. The world building and character development were superb and even though the big reveal wasn't such a big surprise, it unravelled tantalizingly and was delivered expertly. I was helplessly enamored with how well the 2 dueling MC's POVs played tug-of-war with my emotional wellbeing. What were the MCs like you ask? Good question! Both Rielle and Elianna were absolute bad asses...I LOVE a story that features strong women and this one has a few. Navi was another amazing female who had no magic but made up for it with her bravery, determination and compassion. Then there were the "men"folk... in this book the males were either AWESOME...ahem, I'm looking at you Simon, Audrik and even little Remy.... or downright, unequivocally, nauseatingly Repugnant.... yes you (although not limited to) Corien, sit in the corner and think of all the Wrongness that is you, your crawlers, and your dirty deeds.



All of the wrongness set aside, the chapters switched effortlessly back and forth in just the right (cliffy) places, that had me fiending unhealthily for more... my curiosity was toyed with and grew exponentially at every turn... demanding I read on, rapt.



"The empirium lies within every living thing, and every living thing is of the empirium. Its power connects not only flesh to bone, root to earth, stars to sky, but also road to road, city to city. Moment to moment."



...the Empirium ensnared me and I can't get enough. Honestly, I NEED book #2 asap!



All in all, Furyborn passed Go and went directly onto my Favorites list. I HIGHLY recommend this one!


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review 2018-06-04 15:00
Way Too Long to the Point I Didn't Care About Anyone
Furyborn - Claire Legrand

Please note that I received this book via NetGalley. This did not affect my rating or review.


I struggled to finish this. I had to keep reading this in between other books this weekend and finally finished this Sunday morning around 5 a.m. At that point, I was hell-bent on finishing this thing. I don't have a lot to say except skip over this book. It's not the worst book I read this year, but good grief towards the end I kept saying to myself who cares. 


When I requested this book from NetGalley, I thought the synopsis of this book sounded so good. Two young women, one thousand years apart from each other, hold powers that will either save the world or see its destruction. One of the young women is either the queen of light and salvation, or the queen of blood and destruction, otherwise known as the Sun Queen and the Blood Queen respectively.


The two women are known as Rielle Dardenne and Eliana Ferracora. 

In Rielle's story-line she has to deal with seven trials (always seven isn't it) in order to test her. Eliana's story-line a thousand years later shows her as a bounty hunter and assassin. 


I honestly didn't feel either way about Rielle or Eliana. I usually end up liking at least one POV more than the other when authors write their stories this way. This time, I was meh on both of them. I really wish that Legrand had split this book (yeah this is me who always complains when an author writes trilogies) since it made better sense than cramming two plot-lines with different characters into book #1. If she had, I think the characters would have been more developed. Even though this book is over 500 pages long, I didn't feel like Rielle or Eliana were that developed. You just have things happening to them and they react to it. 

Also a word of warning, don't start off the book showing how one of the characters is alive and then we jump back in time to show them going through some stuff. There is no tension then to me as a reader when I am supposed to care if they live or die. You already spoiled me on that. 


The love interests (I guess we can call them that) in this book sucked. Rielle's love interests are Audric and Corien (by the way, I had to go back and look up these people's names while writing this review, that just lets you know how little I cared about them). I don't want to have spoilers in this review, but let us just say one of these people wasn't even a real love interest. I just didn't care and wanted to kick something after a while. Also I hate love triangles. 

Eliana's love interest was Simon. Hard shrug about this dude. There was zero chemistry. I don't even get why YA novels always have to have a love interest. There is enough going on with both young women's story-lines that Legrand could have just had women and men there with no romantic entanglements. 


The writing was okay, I thought the world-building was lacking. I don't want to post spoilers, but I went huh a couple of times while reading. The flow was bad throughout this whole thing too. FYI, this is why it took me almost a week to finish this thing. Books should not put me to sleep, this one did a few times. 


One word of warning, I know this is marked as young adult, but this book has sex scenes. Which seems to be a new thing in young adult books. To me that alone would push this to the new adult genre. I only say this in case any parents out there were thinking about getting this for their teens. I would say ages 12 and up would be a good audience for this book. Back to the sex scenes, no thank you please. I don't know what was going on there. 


The book limps to an ending. Since this is already titled book #1, you can imagine a second and possibly third book happening. 

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text 2018-05-30 17:44
Reading progress update: I've read 25%.
Furyborn - Claire Legrand

Ehhh. So far am not feeling this one. It's not bad, I am just reading it going I feel like I read this somewhere else before. 

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review 2018-05-24 03:15
One of the most-hyped YA fantasy novels of the year so far is out: does it deliver?
Furyborn - Claire Legrand

One of the most hyped books of 2018, with not one, but two versions of early review copies sent out to reviewers and booksellers months in advance, some with a special promo box, 'Furyborn' has been primed for its release for (I'm hazarding a guess) about 8 months now. Every blogger and reviewer I know has wanted to get their hands on a copy of this book to read and review (and likely have the 'one with the artwork on the cover' in their permanent collection) because it is THE book on everyone's blog, and the 'must-read fantasy series of 2018', according to blurb on the back of the book. The publicity campaign has done a rip-roaringly good job to get everyone on board. So does it live up to the hype? Those are high stakes these days when YA fantasy is the genre to reel everyone in.


The premise is grand: two young women, one thousand years apart from each other, hold the immense power that will either save their world or doom it. Each one is either the queen of light and salvation, or the queen of blood and destruction, according to prophecy: which one is the Sun Queen, and who is the Blood Queen?

Rielle Dardenne must endure seven trials to test her magic, which she has been hiding since was a child, and prove herself to be in control of her elemental powers, or she will be executed. Then, some thousand years later, Eliana Ferracora is the counterpart to would-be Queen Rielle. She is a bounty hunter and assassin, known as the ‘Dread of Orline’, and she goes on a mission to find her mother who has been taken along with countless other women, in the violent empire of Ventera. Eliana has had to join a rebel captain, the ‘Wolf’, to get to the heart of the disappearances. And while Rielle knew of her powers for many years, Eliana is just coming to terms with her magic, the power that her body has to heal itself. These two storylines and timelines alternate back and forth throughout the novel, between Rielle and Eliana, and don’t seem to relate to each other; the only thing binding them together throughout is talk of the Sun and Blood Queen .


So I’ll be honest: it was really hard for me to connect to ‘Furyborn’, and I dipped in and out of the book for a while and read several complete other books at the same time, which is unusual for me. It’s only at about halfway through the book that I became more invested in the story and the characters (and then only somewhat), and then I reserved my time solely to this book. For a long book (512 pages), having to read half of it to get invested, is close to reading a whole shorter-length YA novel, so that’s a lot of reading to try and see what all the fuss is about. It’s not to say there wasn’t any action happening on those pages; it just felt like it wasn’t going anywhere. I couldn’t even put my finger on why I felt like the action wasn't ‘happening’, but I rarely ever skim through words on a page but sometimes I wanted to because the same stuff seemed to keep repeating itself.

I was also getting tired of the back and forth between the two storylines; maybe if the reader got to sit with one of the characters longer, a better connection could be felt. I personally felt like you never are given a true feeling for the actual relationships in this book because you can never stay with them long enough to connect with them.
Both lead characters lack the real spunk or inner beauty that I feel they needed to shine through as deserved heroines, so maybe that was what held me back from truly loving their stories. I didn’t feel like either of them were pulling me through to the finish line.

Despite the world-building and the pretty fascinating underbelly of this novel built on dark angels and visions, which are pretty good openings for some amazing subplots, as well as the thrilling opening to the book ‘An End, and a Beginning’, I don’t feel like ‘Furyborn’ delivered for me.

Legrand is a dynamic author and her lyrical writing skills make much of what you read look like poetry. But I don’t like feeling as though a book is 100 pages longer than it needs to be, just so a book is an ‘epic fantasy novel’. I also wanted more time (but not with extra pages) to get to know these characters so I could connect to them. I hate feeling like I’m writing all of this and it will be an unpopular opinion, but I think this could have been so much better, because this was a ‘big one’, but I’ll be reaching, not for the sequel of this, but for Legrand’s ‘Sawkill Girls’ next.

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