When assassins ambush her best friend, the crown prince, Rielle Dardenne risks everything to save him, exposing her ability to perform all seven kinds of elemental magic. The only people who should possess this extraordinary power are a pair of prophesied queens: a queen of light and salvation and a queen of blood and destruction. To prove she is the Sun Queen, Rielle must endure seven trials to test her magic. If she fails, she will be executed…unless the trials kill her first.
A thousand years later, the legend of Queen Rielle is a mere fairy tale to bounty hunter Eliana Ferracora. When the Undying Empire conquered her kingdom, she embraced violence to keep her family alive. Now, she believes herself untouchable–until her mother vanishes without a trace, along with countless other women in their city. To find her, Eliana joins a rebel captain on a dangerous mission and discovers that the evil at the heart of the empire is more terrible than she ever imagined.
As Rielle and Eliana fight in a cosmic war that spans millennia, their stories intersect, and the shocking connections between them ultimately determine the fate of their world–and of each other.
I was super excited for this book and I’m glad to say it didn’t disappoint.
Furyborn first caught my attention because of the time difference between the two POVs and how the legend of Queen Rielle was perceived in the future. I’ve talked about it on Twitter & on my blog a lot, but I absolutely adore writing and reading about lost history and how time & perspective/narrators change the events of the past. It’s quite literally my kryptonite – #antisnowwhite, #merpirate and#aroaceprincess all talk about it in a way or the other.
Despite my excitement, I wasn’t that thrilled about Rielle’s chapters because I’m sick and tired of trials in fantasy books. But to my surprise I ended up really liking them, and for the first half of the book I couldn’t decide which one I liked more, Rielle or Eliana. They are both interesting characters and the author did a great job on bringing them to life.
But what I liked the most about Furyborn was the worldbuilding. The world Legrand created is fascinating, both in Rielle’s and Eliana’s time. I loved the stories about the saints and angels (and the war between humans and angels) and about the gate that keeps the angels locked away. It was very interesting and the world felt beautifully real.
Sadly, the book lost me a bit in the second half, especially in Eliana’s chapters. I finished the story with Rielle as my favorite POV character because Eliana’s last chapters bothered me a bit. Eliana herself is, as I’ve said before, a wonderful character, harsh and sharp because of what she had to do to provide for her family. But towards the end her character arc just… hurries to its end. The switch between I-must-kill-to-survive-and-I-have-no-regrets to I’m-a-monster-omg was just so… sudden. I could see it coming since the beginning, of course, but the moment when she let it all out felt cheap and unearned.
Her pseudo-romance with Simon was also pretty bad, because just like her character arc it came out of nowhere and with an intensity I just couldn’t find believable. Their banter throughout the book was also annoying and painfully obvious.
In conclusion, I’m now much more interested in Rielle’s story than in Eliana’s. I want to know how things went so bad and what made her act the way she did. As for Eliana, I’m okay with her and her story, but so far I’m not that curious about her and her future.
In the end, Furyborn was an fast, intense read with great writing, characters and worldbuilding, though it does have its flaws when it comes to character arc & relationships. I can’t wait to read the next book. 4.0 stars.
ENBY WATCH: there are no enby characters in this book and the narrative doesn’t acknowledge the existence of nothing but men and women.