Author: Cora Carmack
Series: Stormheart #1
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Published: June 13th, 2017 (Tor Teen)
Synopsis: In a land ruled and shaped by violent magical storms, power lies with those who control them.
Aurora Pavan comes from one of the oldest Stormling families in existence. Long ago, the ungifted pledged fealty and service to her family in exchange for safe haven, and a kingdom was carved out from the wildlands and sustained by magic capable of repelling the world’s deadliest foes. As the sole heir of Pavan, Aurora’s been groomed to be the perfect queen. She’s intelligent and brave and honorable. But she’s yet to show any trace of the magic she’ll need to protect her people.
To keep her secret and save her crown, Aurora’s mother arranges for her to marry a dark and brooding Stormling prince from another kingdom. At first, the prince seems like the perfect solution to all her problems. He’ll guarantee her spot as the next queen and be the champion her people need to remain safe. But the more secrets Aurora uncovers about him, the more a future with him frightens her. When she dons a disguise and sneaks out of the palace one night to spy on him, she stumbles upon a black market dealing in the very thing she lacks—storm magic. And the people selling it? They’re not Stormlings. They’re storm hunters.
Legend says that her ancestors first gained their magic by facing a storm and stealing part of its essence. And when a handsome young storm hunter reveals he was born without magic, but possesses it now, Aurora realizes there’s a third option for her future besides ruin or marriage.
She might not have magic now, but she can steal it if she’s brave enough.
Challenge a tempest. Survive it. And you become its master.
This book really took me by surprise! I enjoyed it way more than I expected to. Though the story takes a while to really get going, once the initial setup is past, it’s an adventure from there on.
The land of Caelira is besieged by storms and the only way to stay safe is to live in one of the cities under the protection of the Stormlings, who have the magic to fight these dangerous storms. Aurora is the princess of Pavan who is betrothed to Cassius, Prince of Locke in order to protect her kingdom as she does not have the magic to do so. Her mother has kept her isolated to prevent anyone from finding out about this. But when Rora finds out that being born with magic is not the only way to have it, she disguises herself and runs away with a group of storm hunters to get herself some magic.
Aurora is quite astonishingly naive about her own people and conditions in the kingdom and considering she’s meant to rule them, that’s not really good. Yes, her mother sheltered her, but that far, really? Either way, she’s still an interesting character and I’m yet to make up my mind about her. Locke on the other hand, I wasn’t too fond of, nor of his and Rora/Roar’s romance. Cassius is way more interesting as there’s some real conflict going on there.
The ending was by no means a plot twist. I saw something of that nature coming along, but it was a well orchestrated reveal all the same and sets the stage for an exciting sequel. Roar is an excellent read and the storyline has a lot of potential. I’m looking forward to seeing where Aurora’s story goes next.
Other reviews in this series:
Book 2: Rage