Friday, October 25, 2019

Review - Crown of Feathers (Crown of Feathers, #1) by Nicki Pau Preto

Title: Crown of Feathers (Crown of Feathers, #1)
Author: Nicki Pau Preto
Pages: 496
Publisher: Ink Road
Release Date: 25th April 2019

Blurb from Goodreads:


I had a sister once.

I promised her the throne would not come between us.

But it is a fact of life that one must kill or be killed. Rule or be ruled.

Sometimes the title of Queen is given. Sometimes it must be taken.

In a world ruled by fierce warrior queens, a grand empire was built upon the backs of Phoenix Riders legendary heroes who soared through the sky on wings of fire until a war between two sisters ripped it all apart.

Sixteen years later, Veronyka is a war orphan who dreams of becoming a Phoenix Rider from the stories of old. After a shocking betrayal from her controlling sister, Veronyka strikes out alone to find the Riders even if that means disguising herself as a boy to join their ranks.

Just as Veronyka finally feels like she belongs, her sister turns up and reveals a tangled web of lies between them that will change everything. And, meanwhile, the new empire has learned of the Riders' return and intends to destroy them once and for all.

Crown of Feathers is an epic fantasy about love's incredible power to save or to destroy. Throughout is interspersed the story of Avalkyra Ashfire, the last Rider Queen, who would rather see her empire burn than fall into her sister's hands.

My Review:

*I received an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thanks to Ink Road and NetGalley*

Sixteen years ago, a war led to the two heirs to the throne, two sisters, dying and the Phoenix Riders being wiped out.
Veronyka and her sister Val don't have a home - they are unregistered animages whose magic allows them to communicate with animals. They keep a low profile to avoid being enslaved by the empire.
Veronyka dreams of finding a phoenix egg and becoming a Phoenix Rider.
Val can be cruel and controlling, and one day she goes too far. Veronyka goes off on her own, intending to find any surviving Phoenix Riders. But there's one problem - when Veronyka does find the Riders she learns that only boys are allowed to become Riders, so Veronyka disguises herself as a boy.
Just when things are starting to work out for Veronyka, things are thrown into chaos.
Will her secret be discovered?

The concept of Phoenix Riders was what drew me to Crown of Feathers, and it has to be my favourite aspect of the book. The idea of giant phoenixes large enough to ride was really cool, and I wanted my own phoenix so badly as I was reading this.
I also liked the concept of animages, and that there was a history of fierce, powerful queens.
Crown of Feathers has three perspectives - Veronyka, Sev and Tristan. Veronyka's chapters were my favourite, but it was also interesting to see things from Sev (a reluctant empire soldier hiding his animage abilities) and Tristan's (a trainee Phoenix Rider) points of view.
I also liked that there were letters between the two warring sisters, Avalkyra and Pheronia, in between the chapters. I felt these added to the world-building and history.
The plot was interesting and held my attention, but I wasn't gripped. There were some things that I saw coming and others that surprised me.
The writing style was easy to follow and I would definitely consider reading more from the author.
While I didn't enjoy Crown of Feathers as much as I hoped I would, it was still an enjoyable, unique read.

Overall this was an enjoyable read.

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