Author: Elizabeth Vaughan
Series: Chronicles of the Warlands #1
Genre: Adult fantasy
Yeah, I hear you...creepy cover. And by the look of other editions maybe this book belongs in the adult steamy romance section. But I refuse to judge a book by it's cover; especially when I hear good things. I read a review that likened the handsome Keir in this book to Jack in These is My Words. Oh Jack. I remember and still sigh when I think of your story. That's all it took for me to rush to the library and check this one out. The Setting paragraph is taken from Goodreads, which probably means it's from the publisher.
Before she was old
enough for a marriage-of-alliance, Xylara was trained as a healer. She
can't usurp her brother or negotiate a peace--but she can heal the brave
ones injured in battle.
But not only her countrymen are wounded,
and Xylara's conscience won't let Firelander warriors die when she can
do something to save them. She learns their language and their customs
and tries to make them as comfortable as possible, despite their
She never expects that these deeds, done
in good faith, would lead to the handsome and mysterious Firelander
Warlord demanding her in exchange for a cease-fire. Xylara knows must
trade the life she has always known for the well-being of her people,
and so she becomes...The Warprize.
What I LIKED about this book
What's not to like? Lara is kind, smart and brave, a truly likeable heroine forced into supposed "slavery" with the enemy. Little does she know (and doesn't find out until near the end) she is actually worshiped by the Warlord's people. Keir (the Warlord) is also just, smart, and on occasion compassionate. And because of the character development by Vaughan, this romance is building and sweet. It was not an insta-love. While I would categorize this book as a fantasy romance, it did have enough twists to pull the reader along, even if they weren't in love with Lara and Keir.
What I DISLIKED about this book
**SPOILER** At the end I felt Keir made a rash decision, without consulting Lara, that I thought was contrary to his character. His decision was ill-reasoned, it didn't seem like a strategized play Warlord Keir would have made in battle.
I LOVED this book! I'm awarding it 5 out of 5 stars. I love this type of plot so perhaps I am a little biased. I could read Warprize again, which is saying something because I never read a book twice. If truth be told, days after I finished the book I re-read my favorite passages again, swooning and sighing. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys fantasy and romance. Warprize may appeal to fans of Grave Mercy, Shatter Me or Poison Study. I need to point out that Warprize is an ADULT fantasy novel. One scene in particular between Lara and Keir that is not acceptable for young readers (and definitely goes a lot further than any content in YA literature)...hopefully you get my drift! There is a sequel... I'm not sure I'm going to read it. Gasp! I heard the sequel suffers from the dreaded second-book-dilemma where Keir and Lara fight all the time. I think I like them happy in the ending of Warprize. I'm thinking I'll leave them be!