Title: By Divine Right (#0.5) Published: September 1st 2015 By: Bethany House Genres: Adult, Fantasy, Christian-Fiction, Novella Format: Kindle (119 pages) Source: Purchased My Rating: 3.5 Stars Add To Goodreads || Kindle Freebie
Willet Dura ekes out a living as an assistant reeve in the city of Bunard, the royal city, investigating minor and not-so-minor crimes in the poor quarter. Ever since a terrible battle, Willet’s been drawn to the dead, and has an uncanny ability not only to solve their crimes, but even to know when one has been committed.
When a gifted singer is found dead in the merchants’ quarter of the city, everyone assumes by the signs that the old man simply died of a stroke, but Willet’s intuition tells him better. When he learns that this is the second death within the last month of one of the gifted, those with a rare inherited ability, he begins to suspect that something more is afoot, and he soon finds himself chasing a mystery that could bring down the very kingdom of Collum.
A very nice introduction of what is to come for this saga. I love the antiquity of the setting and the people. The backstory of how one received their gift is very fascinating. Willet is not your average Reeve, he also possesses a strong gift. I love how he went above and beyond to protect the crown. Seeking out the murderers that are so keen on stealing gifts from their dead victims, Willet never thought that he’d find himself in disguise as a servant to get to the bottom of it. I loved the action throughout, and Willet as a man – well, let’s just say he has thoughts just like any other man, but he is so dedicated to his kingdom that he often puts it aside. I found his thoughts to be in line with the Christian genre, as they weren’t derogatory. He stopped what was supposed to be a coup, so to speak, and earned even more respect in his position. Very nice read, short as it is. Definitely recommend reading this before attempting to read the first book.
Title: The Shock of Night Published: October 27th 2015 By: Bethany House Genres: Adult, Fantasy, Christian-Fiction Formats & Sources: eARC via Netgalley / Finished Paperback via Publisher My Rating: 4.5 Stars Add To Goodreads || Amazon || B & N
When one man is brutally murdered and the priest he works for mortally wounded on the streets of Bunard, Willet Dura is called to investigate. Yet the clues to the crime lead to contradictions and questions without answers. As Willet begins to question the dying priest, the man pulls Willet close and screams in a foreign tongue. Then he dies without another word.
Willet returns to the city, no closer to answers than before, but his senses are skewed. People he touches appear to have a subtle shift, a twist seen at the edge of his vision, and it’s as though he can see their deepest thoughts. In a world divided between haves and have-nots, gifted and common, Willet soon learns he’s been passed the rarest gift of all: a gift that’s not supposed to exist.
Now Willet must pursue the murderer still on the loose in Bunard even as he’s pulled into a much more dangerous and epic conflict that threatens not only his city, but his entire world–a conflict that will force him to come to terms with his own tortured past if he wants to survive.
I’m all in for this saga, unless the next book proves otherwise. I love the world building here -the desperation of the people, the envy of not having a gift, the thieving and whoring, the evil lurking about, and just the spiritual mystery of it all. Willet is more driven here as he gets so frustrated trying to get answers. More killing, action, and spiritual magic at play here. I love that, although this is Christian Fiction, it doesn’t read like it. Don’t get me wrong, there are no tasteless trysts going on, but I love that you do feel like you are IN FACT reading a fantasy book. As with most fantasy, there are political agendas. This is not heavy on that, per se, but there are lots of things at play around it. This is not a very character driven series, (so far), but the world building is great. The Darkwater Forest is quite intriguing and I love that there is magical mystery there. This is fantasy, mayhem, spiritual warfare at it’s best. I am looking forward to reading the next book. Highly recommended!