• Rift

    Rift (Nightshade (Hardcover)) (Hardback) By (author) Andrea R Cremer

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    DescriptionChronicling the rise of the Keepers, this is the stunning prequel to Andrea Cremer's internationally bestselling Nightshade trilogy! Sixteen-year-old Ember Morrow is promised to a group called Conatus after one of their healers saves her mother's life. Once she arrives, Ember finds joy in wielding swords, learning magic, and fighting the encroaching darkness loose in the world. She also finds herself falling in love with her mentor, the dashing, brooding, and powerful Barrow Hess. When the knights realize Eira, one of their leaders, is dabbling in dark magic, Ember and Barrow must choose whether to follow Eira into the nether realm or to pledge their lives to destroying her and her kind. With action, adventure, magic, and tantalizing sensuality, this book is as fast-paced and breathtaking as the Nightshade novels. Praise for RIFT "A bit different from "Nightshade," this is a book for historical and paranormal romance lovers alike. ...A great new book that will leave you breathless."--"Romantic Times" "A richly layered, supernatural romance both appealing and unique."--"School Library Journal" "Cremer's trademark quick pace, romantic sensuality, and strong female characters will have fans clamoring for the next title."--"Booklist "


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    Lovely Writing, But the Story Failed to Wow3

    Andrea Thompson Before Calla Tor, there was Ember Morrow and Rift is her story. Rift is an adventure, in life and love. It is a story of freedom, and choices. A discovery of magic and darkness.

    Ember is born of a time when a woman's place was the home. But she wants freedom, something she can have by joining the Conatus.Within the secretive society, Ember finds her true home. I will say that I did like Ember. She's fearless, makes smart decisions, and is loyal to her beliefs. I guess you could say Ember is a 15th century feminist, and I do admire that. She is so ready to join the cause of the Conatus, to fight evil and protect the people. The only problem was, as soon as she met Barrow, Ember lost most of her focus. She still fought well, but so much of her thoughts were consumed by her infatuation with Barrow. That is completely understandable, she's sixteen years old. I just felt that I was given a mixed message because Ember is so determined to give her life for her beliefs, but then she spends so much of the book obsessing over Barrow.

    I honestly didn't feel as if I knew most of the other characters in Rift particularly well. Barrow seems like an honorable man, determined to do his duty to the best of his ability. His steadfastness, kindness and the fact that he is Ember's mentor reminded me of Dimitri Belikov from the Vampire Academy series. Alistair was charming throughout the first half of the story. Later, he begins to act in a confusing, off-putting manner and I never felt that it was authentic. I just didn't feel his motivation. It was as if a flip switched in his brain.

    I always find Cremer's writing to be beautiful, well-paced with a beautiful flow. I continually find myself engrossed in her stories, even when I don't love what's happening. I started off thoroughly enjoying this story. The mood of the story is a bit dark and intriguing. I wanted to know what darkness was around the corner for Ember. Would love find her? But then... then a thought struck me during one dialogue-heavy scene: Why do Scottish characters, in Scotland, in the 15th century, sound like an episode of The Tudors? Just so you know, I've watched Brave and I know how Scottish folk speak. (I'm kidding, kind of.) But really, with the exception of a few words like "lass", "loch" and "aye" thrown in, this was flat-out, boring old Queen's English. When this realization hit, Rift lost most of it's luster for me. I spent the rest of the story focused almost solely on the sad that hit me over the non-existent Scottish dialect.

    Rift is an adventurous story with a strong heroine. It is an interesting look at the back history of the Nightshade sequel, the magical and religious influences that lead to the Searchers and the Keepers. If you love medieval fantasy, this book may be for you. by Andrea Thompson

  • Review from Esther's Ever After4

    Brenna Staats I thoroughly enjoyed Andrea's Nightshade series, but I was thrilled when I heard she was writing a prequel series.

    Guys, Rift was amazing. I sped through that book like you wouldn't believe. It is entirely reminiscent of some of my old favourite fantasy books - some aspects were a bit Tamora Pierce-esque even. The world is totally rich and vibrant, brimming over with details to capture your attention and heart. There's a very good amount of action, and just enough romance to make your heart pound but not enough to overpower the rest of the story.

    Reasons to Read:

    1.An intoxicating fantasy world:

    There is so much going on here - from slight "political tensions" between this semi-secret organization and the Church (the ruling authority for the time period, mostly), to magic and knights, and unknown evil just beginning to come to light... it was such a fascinating place for a book. I just felt utterly immersed in it and enjoyed every minute, getting to know this somewhat familiar history. There were so many familiar and new monsters, and I'm always a big fan of the training centre/school idea as a setting for stories!

    2.Fairly atypical romance:

    I'm sure I wasn't the only one expecting another Shay v Ren style love triangle in Rift - and I was SO happy to see that the romance does NOT appear to be headed that way after reading Rift! I just don't think my heart could handle another Bloodrose . And I think Andrea did a really good job involving some fairly atypical dynamics in terms of the relationships and romance here - plus I appreciatd that it didn't overpower the rest of the story or take away from anything else going on. The romance is strong and giddy and pained all at the same time, but still blends in nicely with the rest.

    3.Dark secrets and mysteries:

    I really loved all the dark and twisted secrets and unexpected scenes - I felt like I was kept on my toes for the whole time. I mean, seeing as I have read the Nightshade books I know how things eventually turn out down the road, but there are still so many things I need to put together. And it's so different to learn about it in Nightshade as a thing of the past, than it is to experience it with characters who lived through it.

    Now, I have to clarify that I really did love this book. And I'm DYING for Rise already. But there were a few things that left me feeling a less satisfied than I had hoped for.

    First of all, the beginning did start off slower than I would have liked. It took me a little while to get into the story and to feel like things were really moving along. And I was somewhat confused by the people and terms being thrown around casually, but after about 50 pages I was hooked and by page 100 I felt caught up and couldn't stop reading.

    Second of all, I liked Ember- but I didn't love her. She just didn't stand out as a heroine for me. I felt like I have read a number of characters very similar to her, and Ember just felt a little bland because of this because I didn't find anything that really made her stand out to me as a memorable heroine - YET. I have high hopes for her in the next book.

    And as usual, Andrea Cremer's action scenes are exciting, heart pounding and well-written. The romance is swoon-worthy (of course). And I loved this book filled with action and intrigue and danger.

    ARC received from Penguin Canada for Razorbill blog tour; no other compensation was received. by Brenna Staats

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