Book Review

Book Review: Blackveil (Green Rider #4) by Kristen Britain

Rating: ☆☆☆☆ 1/2
Audience: Fantasy
Length: 672 pages
Author: Kristen Britain
Publisher: Daw Books
Release Date: February 1st, 2011
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

The long-awaited sequel to Green Rider, First Rider’s Call, and The High King’s Tomb.

Once a simple student, Karigan G’ladheon finds herself in a world of deadly danger and complex magic, compelled by forces she cannot understand when she becomes a legendary Green Rider-one of the magical messengers of the king. Forced by magic to accept a dangerous fate she would never have chosen, headstrong Karigan has become completely devoted to the king and her fellow Riders.

But now, an insurrection led by dark magicians threatens to break the boundaries of ancient, evil Blackveil Forest-releasing powerful dark magics that have been shut away for a millennium.

HOW DARE YOU.

I feel personally victimized by this love triangle. VICTIMIZED. Yeah yeah yeah, this book isn’t even about the romance the majority of the time but my romance loving heart wants it all. I guess I’ll have to keep reading to find out what happens next with my fates lovers.

ANYWAYS. Some other commentary. I LOVE these as audiobooks. LOVE. This was entrancing and the narrator does an excellent job of voices and reading. I also feel completely taken into the world and love this for me. The ever changing POV and moving to different parts of the world are continually interesting. I appreciate getting different sides to figuring out what is going on in Blackveil. I am becoming really attached to many of these characters for a variety of reasons.

I thought the pacing was steady and the action took me by surprise. I love a good gasp face while running down the road listening to this. I am anxious to read the next book already and see where Kerrigan has ended up. I love her as a main character. She feels authentic with more than one layer to her. Trying to remain loyal, but also having a heart that wants to love too. Being strong in the face of evil and so much more. Yay for heroines that are worthy of cheering.

Overall audience notes:

  • Fantasy
  • Language: very little
  • Romance: closed door
  • Violence: physical and magical altercations, battle scenes, weaponry (arrows, swords, etc.), loss of loved ones, attempted murder & murder, executions, blood/gore depiction

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Book Review

Book Review: The High King’s Tomb (Green Rider #3) by Kristen Britain

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
Audience: High Fantasy
Length: 680 pages
Author: Kristen Britain
Publisher: DAW
Release Date: November 1st, 2007
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

For Karigan G’ladheon, the call of magic in her blood is too strong to resist. Karigan returns to the Green Riders, the magical messengers of the king, to find she’s badly needed. Rider magic has become unstable, many Riders have been lost, and the Rider corps is seriously threatened. The timing couldn’t be worse. An ancient evil, long dormant, has reawakened, and the world is in peril. Karigan must face deadly danger and complex magic to save the kingdom from certain doom.

BEST [YET].

Didn’t realize that this would almost bring me to tears by the end. OH STAR CROSSED LOVERS. Such a tensely filled trope.

I love Karigan! She is strong and incredibly in tune with things around her. I like how she takes on danger and takes down opponents. But also, that Karigan is filled with flaws and is continually practicing at things she struggles with. I love a nuanced character you truly want to cheer for.

The romance is definitely not at the forefront of this story, but we all know I love a good dash and this is no exception. Karigan and Spoiler might run me absolutely ragged by the end of this series. WE’LL SEE.

Once again the audio book is amazing. I feel attached to many of the characters and love the every changing points-of-view that provide different angles to this very large plot. Some questions were answered and more were added. A new favorite for this series for me and I can’t wait to read the next book!

Overall audience notes:

  • High fantasy
  • Language: very little
  • Violence: physical and magical altercations; blood depiction
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: kidnapping, torture, loss of loved ones, war themes

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Book Review

Book Review: First Rider’s Call (Green Rider #2) by Kristen Britain

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Fantasy
Length: 596 pages
Author: Kristen Britain
Publisher: DAW
Release Date: August 3rd, 2004
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

GHOSTLY RIDERS

Karigan G’ladheon had been a Green Rider, one of the king of Sacoridia’s elite magical messengers. Being a Green Rider was more perilous than Karigan had ever imagined, for a rogue Eletians had cracked the magical D’Yer Wall which had protected Sacoridia for a thousand years from the evil influence of Blackveil Forest–the arboreal prison of Sacoridia’s ancient enemy Mornhaven the Black–and had brought the threat of dark magic into the land. In the messenger service she had been caught up in a world of deadly danger, and though she had defeated the Eletian, she had nonetheless been tainted by his wild magic.

Exhausted in body and spirit, and determined to be the mistress of her own destiny, Karigan has returned to her home in Corsa. But Karigan’s determination was no match for the Rider’s call. Ghostly hoofbeats echoed in the deep regions of her mind, and when she awoke to find herself on horseback halfway to Sacor City–in her nightgown–she finally gave in.

Back at court Karigan found the Green Riders weakened and diminished. Rider magic was becoming unreliable, and she herself was having ghostly visions–visions of a strong woman with wild flowing hair and a blue and green tartan draped across her shoulder, pinned with a golden brooch. This woman was no stranger to Karigan nor would she have been to any Green Rider, for she was Lil Ambriodhe, First Rider, and founder of the Green Rider corps. But why was she appearing to Karigan? And would Karigan be able to seek the help of a woman who had been dead for a thousand years?

I’M INVESTED.

I didn’t know what to expect when I picked this up. I decided to try the audio (highly recommend) to make it through this tome to really decide if I wanted to invest in this series. Ohhhh did the audio convince me! I really liked this epic fantasy and I feel excited to read book three.

After about 100 pages I started to settle [and remember] who was who and what was happening. By the end I found myself intrigued by the storylines and characters. I wanted to know more about everyone and I am HOOKED on the bit of romance this book is finally adding in. Some books need a dash of romance and this is the case for the series. There’s so much action and politics and things of that nature happening that a bit heavier addition of some soft, tender moments would send this into 5 star land for me.

There’s many maaaany different lines weaving together. I liked the change of POV’s and I was able to keep up with what was happening. They’re journal chapters that gratefully do lead to a HUGE reveal that I think is going to have some great threads for the next book.

I’m excited to continue this high fantasy. It’s nice to have a thick series to work my way through and will definitely be continuing with the audio books.

Overall audience notes:

  • Fantasy
  • Language: very little
  • Violence: physical and magical altercations, murder, loss of loved ones, fires, kidnapping, near death experiences

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Book Review

Book Review: Green Rider (Green Rider #1) by Kristen Britain

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: Fantasy
Length: 471 pages
Author: Kristen Britain
Publisher: DAW Books
Release Date: November 1st, 1998
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

On her long journey home from school after a fight which will surely lead to her expulsion, Karigan G’ladheon ponders her future as she trudges through the immense forest called Green Cloak. But her thoughts are interrupted by the clattering of hooves as a galloping horse bursts from the woods, the rider slumped over his mount’s neck, impaled by two black-shafted arrows. As the young man lies dying on the road, he tells Karigan that he is a Green Rider, one of the legendary messengers of the king, and that he bears a “life and death” message for King Zachary. He begs Karigan to carry his message, warning her not to read it, and when she reluctantly agrees, he makes her swear on his sword to complete his mission “for love of country.” As he bestows upon her the golden winged-horse brooch which is the symbol of his office, he whispers on his dying breath, “Beware the shadow man…”

Karigan’s promise changes her life forever. Pursued by unknown assassins, following a path only her horse seems to know, and accompanied by the silent specter of the original messenger, she herself becomes a legendary Green Rider. Caught up in a world of deadly danger and complex magic, compelled by forces she cannot understand, Karigan is hounded by dark beings bent on seeing that the message, and its reluctant carrier, never reach their destination.

FOUND A NEW FANTASY SERIES TO READ.

Thanks to a library book sale I picked up the first three books in this series on a total whim of, I’ve heard of this before. And that’s it. All I knew was that it was a fantasy book with pretty good reviews.

I surprised myself by really enjoying it by the end. The first half was a bit slow. I know this is a long series so I understand needing to build-up and create a world. It just took longer than expected. Karigan was spending most of her time on the run and I was missing the bigger plot.

Once Karigan made it to her destination things escalated quickly. I love the devious nature of it all and that I didn’t even catch who the bad guy actually was! The magic system and politics of this world created some intense dynamics. The clashing of the brothers for wanting to be King, a fae trying to create a ghost army and Karigan just wanting to go home.

I love Karigan. I think she has some growing up to do (which is fine) but she was a spunky character I adored. I found her brave and bold and loyal to her family and who she was. I imagine a lot of great character growth for her in the coming books.

The only thing I felt it was missing was a bit of romance. There’s a tiny bit of maybe if I squint my eyes at the page something happening between her and a character, BUT I DON’T KNOW. I’m always looking for even a little romance so this should be no surprise that I wanted a bit more.

Overall audience notes:

  • Fantasy
  • Language: none
  • Romance: none
  • Violence: sword fights, poison, animal/creature attacks, murder
  • Trigger warnings: attempted sexual assault, page 265: mention of an off screen rape (that a side character committed)

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