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Review--Of Sea and Smoke

It's been awhile since we've had a book review here, but we're back with a book of truly epic proportions! I had the exciting privilege to read an early copy of Gillian Bronte Adams' newest novel, Of Sea and Smoke, the long-anticipated sequel to Of Fire and Ash. OSAS is just as--if not more--incredible than OFAA!

Don't believe me yet? My complete review is below...


Title: Of Sea and Smoke

Series: The Fireborn Epic (Book 2)

Author: Gillian Bronte Adams

Genre: YA Fantasy, Christian Fantasy

Rating: 5/5 stars

FTC Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a review. I was not required to leave a positive review. All thoughts and opinions expressed herein are entirely my own.

I've been waiting for this book for over a year.

I read Of Fire and Ash last summer, expecting a cool story with an interesting fantasy world. I did not expect to become so irrevocably invested in this phenomenal universe, to the extent that I actually pre-ordered this sequel as soon as it became available and then joined the author's street team so I could get an early review copy. I was so excited to start reading, and so nervous that it wouldn't live up to my expectations.

As it turned out, I needn't have worried.

Characters: The three POV characters we came to know and love in OFAA are back, bringing with them an increased whirlwind of excitement and intrigue. Ceridwen is still as impulsive and hot-headed as ever, but she's growing. If she reminded me of Éowyn in the first book, she gave off more Rings of Power Galadriel vibes in this one. She wants so desperately to do right by her people, and since fighting is the only way she knows how to do that, she'll fight until she dies. I'm still a little scared of her, but she's softening, and it's so good to see.

Rafi is as amazing as before. I loved getting more of his backstory, especially concerning his relationship with Delmar. Sibling dynamics are always my favorite in stories, and this was no exception! Rafi resists growth so much, but he's making progress anyway. And his sense of humor made me laugh out loud several times.

As for Jakim... Eep, what exciting things this book holds for him! He's still such a sweetheart, and his twist at the end is perfection. I can't wait to see how his part in the story concludes!

Content: There's a decent amount of violence in the book, on the same level as OFAA. (So if you made it through that one, you'll be fine here, too.) People are injured, sometimes tortured in brutal ways. A characters loses an eye off-page. A sadistic character revels in inflicting slow, painful torment. There's a good amount of blood and frequent discussions about wounds getting infected. The worst part, though, is when a character cares for a stone-eye tiger's sores that are oozing pus. Really gross...

There are a couple of hints at romances. Two characters seem like they almost kiss. A non-POV couple kisses.

There are several instances of fantasy cursing (blazes, shades, etc.).

Writing: Adams' writing is excellent. This book is massive, but I tore through it, eager to keep reading and get to the end of this magnificent story so I could finally breathe easily again. I laughed, I gasped, I even almost cried a little. So much that was foreshadowed in the first book finds it payoff here, and it's amazing.

The ending, though... I'm still a bit mad about that cliffhanger. I literally flung my Kindle onto my bed after finishing it. How can I be expected to wait at least another year to find out what happens next??? *sobs*

Summary: This book is even better than its predecessor! OFAA set the stage, and OSAS gets the pieces moving. It's all heading toward what I know will be an epic climax, and this all-important second act leaves us satisfied with an excellent story in its own right while ensuring we stay hungry for the finale. Fans of The Fireborn Epic will be thrilled with this sequel!


Of Sea and Smoke will release from Enclave Publishing on November 21. It's available for pre-order now!

Pre-ordering comes with perks! Submit your receipt here to claim these awesome thank-you goodies. (U. S. residents only.)

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