Venators: Promises Forged – Devri Wells [WriteReads Ultimate Blog Tour]

Goodreads Summary

It has been mere days in the world of Eon, where Rune Jenkins, her twin brother Ryker, and their friend Grey have been trapped, fighting for their lives. After discovering the truth of their ancestry, the three are far from home, and far from anything resembling their mundane lives of the past.
While Ryker is still held captive by the eerily beautiful Zio and her goblins, Grey falls into the clutches of Feena, the Fae queen. She begins to drain his soul bit by bit to feed her dark underground garden, and Grey has no hope of escaping on his own.
It is now up to Rune to save Grey, as his precious time slips away inexorably. But the Council has denied her permission to embark on a rescue mission, until she can harness her Venator gifts and prove herself capable of venturing into the Fae queen’s territory. As Rune discovers that promises in Eon are forged with life-or-death consequences, she realizes that she must act quickly, or else be swallowed – and Grey along with her – by the dangers of Eon.

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Review

So today is my stop on The Write Read’s Ultimate Blog Tour for Venators: Promises Forged. I was really excited for this, after being part of the tour for Venators: Magic Unleashed, and absolutely loving that book.

It did not disappoint.

The first book left things fairly unresolved, and the second picks up immediately after the first, with the characters recovering from their adventures. They have to deal with the fallout of their actions, and both Rune and Grey realise the world they’re in is a lot more complicated than they initially thought.

Promises Forged does a great job of deepening this world, revealing more of the politics and customs surrounding the council and the various situations likely to affect these characters. We also get glimpses of Ryker, seeing what effect his imprisonment and the strange world he’s found himself in are having.

We get to see more of Rune and Grey, as well as witnessing the consequences suffered when they rush into situations without fully understanding them. Rune, though desperate to get her brother back, knows she cannot do her job without Grey. And Grey still just wants to help people, but through the course of book 2 they both learn how they might be able to use the various rules and constrictions to their advantage.

I really enjoyed seeing more of the characters around Rune and Grey in this book, as well as the further worldbuilding that takes place. There’s some interesting antagonists introduced, and the last third contained enough twists and turns to make it feel almost like a rollercoaster.

Sometimes, in a trilogy, the series starts out with a strong premise that maybe falls a little flat in book 2. It’s the second book which will convince people to read the next, and even if the series is longer, I think it’s the second book which can really hook people in and make them stay for the duration. It can be dangerous territory, but Wells pulls it off really, really well.

Promises Forged delivers on, well, it’s promise. It does exactly what a second book needs to do; it resolves some situations, while leaving others open to be continued in the next book, it deepens our understanding of the world and develops the characters further, while putting them in even more danger than the first book.

I liked the first book, but I loved the second., It was a fun, enjoyable read that does a lot for this series, and now I feel completely engaged with Rune and Grey’s story, caught up in this world and the possibility of what might happen to them. Both Magic Unleashed and Promises Forged, with everything you could want from a portal fantasy and more.

Venators: Magic Unleashed – Devri Walls [WriteReads Ultimate Blog Tour]

venatorsBlurb

From Goodreads:

Six years ago, Grey Malteer was attacked by creatures he thought couldn’t possibly exist. They repeated a word, calling him a name he’d never heard before…Venator. Since then, his life has been a hellhole of secrecy—hiding old pain alongside strange new abilities.

Rune Jenkins has an itch, as she calls it, but it’s more than that. It’s an anger that builds up like the inside of a boiler whenever she’s around anything remotely supernatural. The pressure is growing steadily worse and she can’t understand why. All she knows is—her control is slipping.

By order of an unknown council Grey and Rune are pulled through a portal in the St. Louis arch, landing them in an alternate dimension where creatures of myth and legend exist. A realm that calls them, Venators.

Made up of centuries old fae, vampires, werewolves, elves and succubi the council’s corrupt nature becomes obvious as they seek to wield the newly returned Venators as weapons. Wedged in an impossible position, Grey and Rune must decide their fate—do they go against the council’s wishes and help the innocents of this unforgiving land, or face the possibility of execution by the council.

Review

I was absolutely delighted with this book. I have to admit, I am a complete sucker for fantasies which use a variety of different creatures, and that is something Magic Unleashed does really well, introducing us to a world where vampires, werewolves, succubi and others live side by side, and where Venators were once revered, Venators being humans powerful enough to withstand most the effects from the other types of beings.

The opening introduces us to the two main characters. Rune, desperately trying to take care of her twin brother, putting him first and herself second, and Grey, who brushed against the supernatural years before, and has been training himself and studying up on it ever since.

Through the eyes of these two characters, taken from their world into the world of the supernatural, we get introduced to the various other inhabitants, and witness the dangers threatening the Venators. They work their way through a fae forest and a pack of werewolves to reach the Council. All Grey wants is to be a hero, to save the innocent and protect those around him, while Rune just wants to be reunited with her brother.

I really liked the main characters. There’s an instant connection between them and the reader, giving us plenty of reasons to cheer them on and want to see them succeed. The idea of Venators is explained really well, without the story slowing down or stopping completely to convey exactly what it means to us. Instead it feels natural, just as the world Walls has created does.

And they don’t feel overpowered, despite their abilities. When they do come up against the supernatural creatures, they feel all too human and vulnerable, unsure and with no idea how to actually fight in the various situations they’re put in.

The novel is fast-paced and tightly packed, especially once the set-up is over and Grey and Rune leave our world. From there, we’re taken on a rollercoaster ride, leaving us to wonder what exactly will happen next to our two heroes.

The only thing I didn’t really like was the way it ended. It felt too unresolved. Of course, if a book is part of a series there has to be questions left unanswered, but for the first book in a series it felt like there was too much missing. The ending felt a little abrupt.

Despite this, Magic Unleashed is a really good introduction to this world and characters, and feels unique in the setting and the way various supernatural creatures are used. It’s definitely a series I can really see myself really getting into.

Devri Walls

devriDevri Walls is an international best selling author. She lives in Meridian, Idaho with her husband, two children and one adorable little mutt. Writing in all things fantasy, she would do just about anything for a working magic wand.

Mostly because she’s a walking disaster and a wand would be of enormous help…although she’d probably trip and break it. So, there’s that.

She graduated with a degree in theater and has studied vocal performance most of her life. She now teaches voice lessons when she’s not writing novels, cooking dinner, playing taxi, spending time with her amazingly supportive husband or trying to read.”

My question for Devri Walls: What’s your favourite part of the writing process?

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