It’s a blog takeover! I’m so happy to be handing the reigns over to Hayley Reese Chow for the next three days.
Released today, Idriel’s Children is a magical epic fantasy set in a world I’ve fallen in love with.
Look out for an interview with Hayley tomorrow and her guest post on writing the day after.
About the book
Reaping darkness, the Shadow slicked steel with judgment and danced with death…
Sixteen-year-old Aza inherited the power of shadow to rid the land of evil as Odriel’s cold-blooded assassin. With her growing strength, Aza discovers the Shadow Plane—a realm of wraiths where screams haunt the winds, calling to her. Although her father forbids her from entering the dark realm, Aza can’t ignore the beckoning whispers.
When a dangerous new breed of monster attacks, Aza believes the Shadow Plane holds the answers they need to defeat them. With the unwanted help of a snarky cat and a cursed beast, Aza seeks out the monastic Wraith-Called for answers. But the deeper Aza delves into the dark realm, the further she drifts from the world she knows.
As Aza uncovers evils new and old, she must decide if the ends really do justify the means… and how many lives she’s willing to pay.
It’s been 28 years since Kaia and Klaus’s epic battle against Idriel’s dark forces, and much has changed in Okarria. However, when enemies at the borders call the Dragon and Shadow Heirs away, it leaves their children – fire blessed son, Zephyr, and shadow gifted daughter, Aza – to travel to the forest of the Maldibor and help them against the darkness that rises.
Aza is convinced that answers to all their problems lie in the forbidden shadow plane, but can she find the solution before it’s too late?
I enjoyed the first book in this series, Odriel’s Heirs, when it released last year, but I didn’t realize how happy I’d be to return to the world of Okarria.
The author has created a compelling land, rich in fantastical animals, with a strong magic system that makes sense.
I found the time jump unexpected, but it provided a great opportunity to explore the changes in the country through a new set of eyes.
While the first book focuses on the Dragon Heir and her unique fire powers, Idriel’s Children is about the stealthy Shadow Heir in waiting, Aza. I loved getting to learn more about the Shadow Heir’s gifts, and the shadow plane gave me the same feelings of excitement and wonder as the nine gates of death in the Abhorsen series, or the twilight realm in the Watch series.
The Maldibor, cursed men who spend most of the month as a wolf/bear hybrid beast, were one of the highlights of the first book, so I was thrilled to see the Maldibor, Makeo, as a main character in the sequel. He is a great character – kind, loyal and brave – and I loved his relationship with Aza.
My only quibble with this book is that I felt the pace lagged a little in the middle, leaving the epic events at the end a bit rushed. However, perhaps this is because I would have liked the book to be longer.
If you are a fan of Garth Nix, you will love this book. It is so magical, so interesting and exciting, and has characters you care about. There is even some romance that I actually liked!
I award Idriel’s Children…
Idriel’s Children is available for $2.76 ebook and $5.99 print book on Amazon.
I received an ARC from the author and I am voluntarily leaving an honest review.
About the author
Hayley Reese Chow is the author of Odriel’s Heirs, the 2020 winner of the Florida Author Project. She also has short and flash fiction featured in Lite Lit One, The Drabble, Bewildering Stories, Teleport Magazine, and Rogue Blades Entertainment’s anthology, As You Wish.
Until recently though, she’s mostly done a lot of things that have nothing at all to do with writing. Her hat collection includes mother, wife, engineer, USAF veteran, reservist, four-time All American fencer, 100 mile ultramarathoner, triathlete, world traveler, book inhaler, and super nerd.
Hayley currently lives in Florida with two small wild boys, her long-suffering
husband, and her miniature ragehound.
But at night, when the house is still, she writes.