Hello bookish friends and welcome to my Blog Tour Stop for Relic by Bronwyn Eley hosted by Shealea @ CAFFEINE BOOK TOURS. Be sure the follow the rest of the tour and check out the other amazing tour hosts!
Published: September 12, 2019
Publisher: Talem Press
Genre(s): Young Adult, Fantasy
Format: Paperback, 498 Pages
AMAZON – BOOK DEPOSITORY
In the city of Edriast, there is no deadlier duty than to serve as the Shadow.
As the personal servant of the powerful Lord Rennard, the Shadow’s life is all but forfeit. Rennard possesses one of five rare and dangerous Relics – a jewel that protects his bloodline, but slowly poisons everyone else in its proximity. When the current Shadow succumbs to its magic, nineteen-year-old blacksmith Kaylan is summoned to take his place.
It’s an appointment that will kill her.
As the time Kaylan has left ebbs away, hope begins to fade… That is, until she discovers a plot to destroy all five bloodlines in possession of the Relics.
A rebel force plans to put an end to Rennard’s rule and Kaylan suddenly finds herself embroiled in a cause that might just be worth fighting for. But no cause is without its costs…
As her life hangs in the balance and rebellion bears down on Edriast, Kaylan must decide where her loyalties lie – and how she’ll leave her mark on the world.
Relic is the absorbing first novel in The Relic Trilogy, a thrillingly dark YA fantasy series.
A Dark, Gripping, and Heartwrenching YA Fantasy
Dark, gripping, and heartwrenching, Relic by Bronwyn Eley is a fantastic start to a thrilling YA fantasy series that will leave readers intoxicated and begging for the next book.
Okay so it took me a while to get into this book and for the first half, I was definitely leaning on a 3 hearts rating. I kept waiting for something really exciting to happen and while there are some interesting parts that I enjoyed reading, I definitely found myself wanting to put the book down a few times. Also, the pacing for the most part… at least for the first half of the novel is really slow for me. BUT, the intrigue and mystery kept me reading and the deeper I got into the story, the more I became fascinated with everything. A little over the halfway mark, the plot picks up pace and there’s a lot of excitement and happenings that had me glued to the pages. I certainly enjoyed the second half of the book more than the first, but all in all, I thought this was a fun and thrilling fantasy tale.
This is one of those books that slowly grows on you that by the end, you’ll have a difficult time processing everything in the story. I still have questions about so many things, but I think this novel is pretty amazing and while I may not put the sequel on the top of my TBR list, I’m definitely interested in seeing what Eley does next. I think the world-building is interesting and there are so much more I want to know about the Relics, the magic involved, and the relationship between the owner and the relic itself. The plot is slow at first and doesn’t really have enough action scenes, but it never lost its appeal and there are so many moments I enjoyed just getting to know Kaylan and the rest of the characters. I like the emotional depth, the friendships, the romance, and the exhilarating last few chapters. Eley also does a fantastic job sprinkling some shocking surprises, twists, and turns. I knew the ending would break my heart in some way, but I was not at all prepared for what happened. There are some aching feels on those last few pages so be prepared for some tears.
Kaylan is a likable heroine and my heart broke for her so much and everything she has to deal with. However, as much as I like Kaylan, I never completely fell in love with her character. She has plenty of admirable qualities — she’s caring, loyal, compassionate, and kind — and I cared enough about her that I didn’t want to see her hurt. But, I wanted Kaylan to fight more and to have more fire in her. I can’t give too much away, but in the end, I could definitely see Kaylan becoming the type of heroine I love and that got me really excited for her character arc in the next book.
I adore Markus and like him as a love interest for Kaylan even though I didn’t get enough swoons and never felt an intense chemistry between them. To me, it feels like they’re very good friends who really care about each other. That being said, I still enjoyed their sweet moments together and the few instances they flirted with each other. I also really like how Markus wants to save Kaylan and just make her happy. He’s sweet, charming, and just a really good person.
Lord Rennard is the antagonist and as much as I want to not like him, a part of me felt sorry for him, Yes there’s darkness in him… maybe it’s the Relic or maybe it’s really him. He can be vile and cruel, but there’s also a part of him that does care. I’m definitely conflicted…and even now, I still feel that way. BUT, if there is one character I don’t like at all, that would be Thorne. He is downright hateful and a horrible person. To me, he’s the villian of the story.
Some other characters that are worth mentioning – Shae, Jesper, Elias and Bellamy. I like the friendship that forms between Jesper and Kaylan. I love Shae and her bond with Kaylan is so heartwarming. I wish she was in the story more cause she brought some lightness and humor. I’m not sure how I feel about Elias, but I’m hoping he has a bigger role in the second book. Bellamy is a mystery and I have a feeling it may not necessarily be a good one.
Relic by Bronwyn Eley is a great debut novel and even though I took a while to really get into the story, I found myself intrigued enough, excited throughout the second half of the book, stunned during the last few chapters, and thrilled to see what would happen next. I like the magic, the family dynamic, the mystery, the friendships, the character arcs, the political aspects, and the subtle romance. I enjoyed this thrilling fantasy and if you can get past the slow pacing in the beginning, I’m sure you’ll be impressed and more than satisfied with the overall story.
I received an advance reader copy of this book for participating in a blog tour hosted by CAFFEINE BOOK TOURS and in exchange for a fair and honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Bronwyn joined the military right out of high school, where she learnt (among other things) to disassemble and reassemble a rifle blindfolded. After that, she spent a lot of her time travelling around the world. Her favourite places (so far) are Scotland, Mongolia, Iceland, and Ireland.
Bronwyn finally found her natural habitat when she landed her first job in the publishing industry. While she has always been a writer, it was only when surrounding herself with books that she realised her life’s dream was to become an author. Relic is her first novel.
Bronwyn lives in Sydney and spends her time eating chocolate, reading and practicing her martial arts.
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