The heart is a battlefield.
All Talasyn has ever known is the Hurricane Wars. Growing up an orphan in a nation under siege by the ruthless Night Emperor, Talasyn has found her family among the soldiers who fight for freedom. But she is hiding a deadly secret: light magic courses through her veins, a blazing power believed to have been wiped out years ago that can cut through the Night Empire’s shadows.
Prince Alaric, the emperor’s only son and heir, has been forged into a weapon by his father. Tasked with obliterating any threats to the Night Empire’s rule with the strength of his armies and mighty Shadow magic, Alaric has never been bested. That is until he sees Talasyn burning brightly on the battlefield with the magic that killed his grandfather, turned his father into a monster, and ignited the Hurricane Wars. In a clash of light and dark, their powers merge and create a force the likes of which has never been seen.
Talasyn and Alaric both know this war can only end with them. But a greater threat is coming, and the strange new magic they can create together could be the only way to overcome it. Thrust into an uneasy alliance, they will confront the secrets at the heart of the war and find, in each other, a searing passion–one that could save their world…or destroy it.
An exquisite fantasy brimming with unforgettable characters, sizzling enemies-to-lovers romance, and richly drawn worlds, The Hurricane Wars marks the breathtaking debut of an extraordinary new writer.
When I take more than one week to finish a book that is not over the 800 pages but rather around 400 pages, that’s never a good sign…
This is one of my biggest disappointments this year.
I so wanted to adore that book as many gushed about it and the cover is drop dead gorgeous. I even met Thea Guanzon at YALC and had my book signed.
Sadly, it didn’t meet my expectations.
So here you get a bite size review…
What I liked (kinda)
– the world building and the magic system.
I especially loved the fauna on Nenavare, the beautiful island. The different kinds of magic Light, Shadow etc. The aethremancy.
– the cover. This is probably the prettiest book of 2023.
What didn’t work for me
– the characters felt two dimensional. Alaric and Talasyn didn’t give much away. I would have loved to delve deeper in their personalities, have nuances. As it is, Talasyn is always bursting with anger, acts before she speaks then regrets it sometimes.
And Alaric is controlled, wants to love Talasyn but then remember the words of his revered father and backs of just to get back to her later. Never does he question what his father told him about the reasons of the war and it’s such a disappointment and missed opportunity! Maybe he’ll do just that in the second book but I am just not interested enough to read the sequel.
–the side characters are just like prop. Instead of enriching the story, adding witty dialogs or comic relief or imparting some wisdom …the side characters are barely visible. It’s another missed opportunity.
It began with action and battles but after some time it’s going on a loop or a standstill. I don’t see a lot of plot and everything gets to Talasyn fighting Alaric then secretly pinning after each other.
It’s branded as an enemies to lovers but felt more like instant attraction. They hate each other, fight brutally and then from the first encounter can’t forget his/her eyes etc. And nearly every time it’s rinse, repeat. That felt tedious.
I can see why many would actually adore that book and if you did, I am so glad for you! Unfortunately, it felt flat to me and took me more than one week to finish.
That being said, this is a first work and there is room for improvement. It just missed the mark for me.
Thanks for reading.