#Spotlight: The Last Dragon Rider by Errin Krystal @ErrinKrystal #Excerpt

Good morning lovely people! Today I have a treat for you, it’s release day for The Last Dragon Rider so I’m sharing an exclusive excerpt. This excerpt is from one of my favourite scenes from the book. It really tells you a lot about these characters so I hope you enjoy it!

I also have to draw your attention to the artwork which accompanies it. Errin Krystal has some fabulous artwork which I’ve been in awe of quite honestly, it has been done by an artist named Ryuutsu and you can check out more here.

If you missed my review of this amazing fantasy novel last week, you can catch up with it here. In September Errin will share more about her reading habits on The Bookshelf!

Description

Trained as an elite warrior from childhood, the elven crown prince Flintathriël fights to bring a stop to a war that began before he was born. With the aid of his betrothed Sairalindë, a skilled mage and dragon rider in her own right, they must find the Book of Souls – an ancient and mysterious tome rumored to have belonged to the god Hath’Raal.

When the missing book turns up in the hands of Mnuvae, the bastard child of the dead king, Flintathriël finds himself fighting to not only save his people from this new threat but also trying to keep Sairalindë safe when Mnuvae takes over the dragons in her attempt to win back the kingdom she believes is rightfully hers.

The love Flintathriël and Sairalindë share shines pure and true, but when the smoke of the battle clears, will their hearts survive the aftermath of war or will their love become a casualty that cannot be revived?

Excerpt

“So where is this book?”

 

She avoided his gaze, glancing about the room, scarlet bloomed upon her cheeks.

 

“Sivath would not take me down.”

 

Flintathriël could not stop the laughter that rumbled up from his chest. “The great hulking dragon was afraid to enter a haunted marsh!”

 

“Please, Flint, na’vahla, we must go.”

 

His laughter died in his throat. She wanted him to take her into that gods forsaken marsh. The place the gods had literally forsaken.

 

“Do not be daft, woman.” He held up his hand when she made to protest.

 

“No! You will stay here. I will go, you, na’vahleth, will stay here where it is safe.”

 

Her golden eyes narrowed, and she leaned back against her desk, her fingers drumming an irritated tune against the polished oak. “Stay behind? You must be joking?”

 

Flintathriël shrugged, tossed the papers on her bed, and stepped away from the bedpost. It was worth a try even though he knew she would never agree to stay behind. He stopped before her, and her features softened as he cupped her face between his palms, brushing away the dried blood smeared across her skin.

 

“Flint, I am careful. I did not go charging into Gahl-Raëlön unprepared.” She always saw straight through to that part of him that worried, that feared the day all warriors in the darkest reaches of their soul did. The last day. She always saw.

 

He pressed his brow to hers and closed his eyes, inhaling the intoxicating scent of her. Wildflowers and sweat and blood. Flintathriël reached for a loose strand of coppery hair, letting the silky strands slip between his fingertips, feeling the flecks of dirt brush across his skin.

 

“Saira—”

 

She felt the tension in his body as he leaned against her, his breath warm against her cheek, his eyes still tightly closed. “If anything were to happen to you—”

 

Sairalindë reached up and brushed the silver-white veil from his face. He slid one hand up the back of her neck, gently tracing the contours of her cheekbone with the other before sliding his fingers down to work the fastenings of her riding armor.

 

“You are my everything.”

 

About Errin Krystal

Errin Krystal - Author ImageErrin Krystal is a fantasy romance writer who has been writing since she was a small child. Her head has always been full of stories. She began work on her first novel when she was sixteen.

She lives with her family in regional Victoria, Australia, and works as a chef. In her quieter moments, she loves to indulge her passion for storytelling, basking in the joy that comes from creating vibrant characters, fantastical worlds and all manner of magical creatures. Dragons and elves, mages and warriors, troubled princes and beautiful princesses, romance, magic, and adventure can all be found in her writing.

    

 

Book & Buy Links

TitleThe Last Dragon Rider
Series: The Wild Realms of Véneanár #1
Author: Errin Krystal
Genre: Fantasy | High Fantasy | Swords & Sorcery | Dragons
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 9 August 2017
Review Format: N/A
Other Formats: eBook
Pages: 100
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US

#BlogTour: The Last Dragon Rider by Errin Krystal @ErrinKrystal @shanannigans81 #Review #Giveaway

I’m so pleased to be part of this blog tour, I’ve been reading Errin Krystal’s blog for some time and seeing her process as she develops these characters and knowing I wanted to read her book as soon as possible so being able to read an advanced copy for the tour was pretty exciting, not to mention it met all my expectations! As an added bonus I’m going to be featuring an excerpt from the book on release day and Errin is going to be taking part in The Bookshelf in September so keep your eyes peeled!

Description

Trained as an elite warrior from childhood, the elven crown prince Flintathriël fights to bring a stop to a war that began before he was born. With the aid of his betrothed Sairalindë, a skilled mage and dragon rider in her own right, they must find the Book of Souls – an ancient and mysterious tome rumored to have belonged to the god Hath’Raal.

When the missing book turns up in the hands of Mnuvae, the bastard child of the dead king, Flintathriël finds himself fighting to not only save his people from this new threat but also trying to keep Sairalindë safe when Mnuvae takes over the dragons in her attempt to win back the kingdom she believes is rightfully hers.

The love Flintathriël and Sairalindë share shines pure and true, but when the smoke of the battle clears, will their hearts survive the aftermath of war or will their love become a casualty that cannot be revived?

The Last Dragon Rider - Tour Banner

Review

So, let’s just start with the obvious, dragons! Yes there are dragons, beautiful powerful dragons. And elves, who ride the dragons. Not everyone can ride the dragons it takes a special person to bond with a dragon and become a dragon rider. Oh can you imagine? Sorry, you lost me to the land of dreams again!

Sairalindë is a dragon rider, she is also a powerful mage. Strong and beautiful she’s a wonderful character to behold she is betrothed to our protagonist Flintathriël (and seriously, how does Errin come up with these names they are fabulous?). Flintathriël is a Nuvien fighter and heir to the Elven thrown, he has hair as white as ash and is nicknamed whitey because of it. He is quite a joker and I found myself laughing at much of his antics. He doesn’t take life to seriously but he is a strong fighter and understands the threats facing his people.

Flintathriël’s sister Faëlwyn is also a fighter, in love with their commander Theron she is willful and wants to be at the centre of the action. She is more serious than her brother and more open with her feelings.

This happy family of elves are threatened by Mnuvae, she considers herself the rightful heir to the throne, she will do whatever it takes including total destruction to take it. I will be honest there were moments I felt complete sadness and affinity for Mnuvae, I felt like she deserved the throne, that she had been hard done by and that even Flintathriël was quite mean towards her.

This book has everything, there are some beautifully romantic scenes but much of this book is a full on battle and it’s quite heart breaking to see what these characters go through in such a short time. Seeing where Flintathriël starts and where he ends was devastating and I desperately wanted to rewind and see something change.

This is just the first book in this series and I absolutely cannot wait to see what Errin Krystal produces next because this was high fantasy at it’s absolute best, completely riveting with characters that attach themselves to you and won’t let go.

Sending a huge thanks to Errin Krystal and R&R Book Tours for the eARC so that I could read and honestly review this novel.

Rating

Tour Schedule

July 31st
Reads & Reels (Promo)
Nesie’s Place (Promo)
Didi Oviatt (Review)

August 1st
WeeBitWordy (Review)

August 2nd
Darling Bear Reviews (Review)

August 3rd
Tranquil Dreams (Review)
Thoughts All Sorts (Review)
Brizzle Lass Books (Review)

August 4th
The Most Sublime (Promo)

August 7th
Literary Dust (Promo)
Brickley Jules Blog (Promo)

August 8th
The Protagonist Speaks (Character Interview)

About Errin Krystal

Errin Krystal - Author ImageErrin Krystal is a fantasy romance writer who has been writing since she was a small child. Her head has always been full of stories. She began work on her first novel when she was sixteen.

She lives with her family in regional Victoria, Australia, and works as a chef. In her quieter moments, she loves to indulge her passion for storytelling, basking in the joy that comes from creating vibrant characters, fantastical worlds and all manner of magical creatures. Dragons and elves, mages and warriors, troubled princes and beautiful princesses, romance, magic, and adventure can all be found in her writing.

    

Giveaway

 

Giveaway Button

5x eCopies of The Last Dragon Rider.

(Tour-Wide Giveaway)

Book & Buy Links

TitleThe Last Dragon Rider
Series: The Wild Realms of Véneanár #1
Author: Errin Krystal
Genre: Fantasy | High Fantasy | Swords & Sorcery | Dragons
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 9 August 2017
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: N/A
Pages: 100
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US

#Review: Nightseer by Laurell K. Hamilton @LKHamilton @AceRocBooks

Description

Keleios was a child when her mother, Elwine the Gentle, was slain by the malevolent witch Harque. Now Keleios’s prayers of avenging her death have finally been answered: she has been granted powers beyond anything she has ever known. But she has also acquired something else–the demonmark. As magical as it is terrifying, the demonmark can open the door to undreamed possibilities. It can also expose her soul to the darkest and most forbidden forces of sorcery.

Review

I remember the day I bought this book, I was in one of the many second hand bookshops in Hay-on-Wye and buying a ridiculous number of books, as you do, and I spotted this bright yellow cover calling me and when I picked it up I realised it was Laurell K. Hamilton’s debut novel. Well I wasn’t going to not buy it. That was eight years ago and I have finally taken it from my bookshelf to read, I know I know!

I have never been able to keep up with LKH’s books I am so far behind with her work that it is laughable, but I persevere, there are just so many good books people, you feel my pain right? Anyway, I love LKH because she knows how to write a female protagonist, love or hate her work her female protagonists kick arse and don’t apologise for it either. I was so interested to see what her initial work was like.

Nightseer is actually a fantasy novel, how happy was I to read something by this amazing author that was in my favourite comfort zone? Keleios is a half elf/human with immense power, but like anyone in her world she can only use her power for so long before draining herself and needing to refuel. She is also a dream walker who see’s prophecies in dream and when she see’s a great danger coming she does everything she can to prevent it.

This book is pretty much non stop action from beginning to end, high fantasy with magic and sword play, it’s exhausting to read because there is hardly any let up from one battle to the next. There are a lot of special and named weapons which do start to become a bit confusing to keep track of as one gets destroyed  or lost and another is miraculously found.

Keleios is joined by a band of sidekicks who help her along her journey, including Lothor a dark healer and prince who wants her to marry him, in true LKH style there is much resistance on Keleios’ side but I could never work out why as I was really drawn to his character.

The ending left a lot of unanswered questions and I felt that this was intended to be a series but never went in that direction, probably because Anita Blake and Merry Gentry came along. I’m quite sad about that because more of Keleios and this wonderful world would be absolutely fantastic.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleNightseer
Series: N/A
Author: Laurell K. Hamilton
Genre: Fantasy | High Fantasy | Magic | Sword & Sorcery
Publisher: Ace Books
Publication Date: 1 March 1992
Review Format: Paperback
Other Formats: Hardcover
Pages: 304
BuyAmazon UK | Amazon US | Book Depository | Wordery

#Review: Alphabet of Thorn by Patricia A. McKillip @SFGateway

Description

Deep inside a palace on the edge of the world, the orphan Nepenthe pores over books in the royal library, translating their languages and learning their secrets. At sixteen, she knows little of the outside world. But when a young mage gives Nepenthe a book that has defied translation – a book written in a language of thorns – it speaks to Nepenthe’s soul, and becomes her secret obsession. As the words escape the brambles they reveal themselves – and begin to reveal Nepenthe’s destiny …

Review

I bought and read this as it was the most recent pick in the Flights of Fantasy book club and I have been determined to stick with the reading for this, especially with books like this that weren’t even on my radar. Aside from a few chapters where I started it really late at night I read Alphabet of Thorn in one day but I did have my issues with it.

Nepenthe is a transcriptor within the Royal Library, she works in return for the care they have given her all her life since finding her abandoned as a baby, an orphan. When she collects a book from the nearby mage school she becomes deeply connected to both the mage who hands her the book, Bourne, and the book itself which seems to enchant her.

As time goes on we start to see a dual timeline story emerge telling us the story of the centuries old legends Axis and Kane, as we discover why the book is so enchanting to Nepenthe and nobody else, we find out more about the new Queen of the Twelve Crowns,  Tessera.

Throughout this book I felt the story was well developed, there could have been a little more world building to help with understanding of how the world was laid out and had grown but for the most part is was adequate. Characterisation was great and I felt connected to multiple characters as we moved around different character point of views in each chapter.

There weren’t any big battle scenes this wasn’t that kind of book, there weren’t even any little battle scenes. This was a quest and magic based fantasy about love and loyalty and how it can span time and space, very clearly placed in the high fantasy genre. The writing was beautiful and addictive and Nepenthe as a protagonist was pure and special yet she had no special powers or skills other than her ability to translate the written word.

What disappointed me and where I felt I missed out was at the end, there was a huge book long build up to the final scenes, and then in a page it was over. I felt quite let down that after such a huge build up what we receive is quite an anti-climax. I also felt the sub-plots relating to individual relationships were left unresolved and I felt disappointed that the closure you look for in a standalone novel wasn’t there with these.

Overall, this was a great book, it just didn’t quite give me what I look for in terms of closure.

Rating

This review was part of my Flights of Fantasy reading challenge and book club.

Book & Buy Links

TitleAlphabet of Thorn
Series: N/A
Author: Patricia A. McKillip
Genre: Fantasy | High Fantasy | Magic
Publisher: Gateway
Publication Date: 29 October 2015
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: Paperback | Hardcover
Pages: 192
Buy: Amazon UK | Amazon US | Book Depository | SpeedyHen | Wordery

#Review: Dragon of Ash & Stars: The Autobiography of a Night Dragon by H. Leighton Dickson @hdickson62

Description

Stormfall is a dragon born with a coat the colour of a starry night. When a violent storm strikes his island aerie, he is carried on hurricane winds into the complicated and sometimes cruel world of men. There, his journey takes him from fisher dragon to farmer, pit-fighting dragon to warrior, each step leading him closer to a remarkable destiny. But war is coming to the land of Remus and with it, a crossroads for the Night Dragon and the young soul-boy he allows on his back. How far is Stormfall willing to go in a war that is not his own?

Review

I stumbled over this book by chance, the cover captured my imagination so I bought it and I couldn’t be happier that I did, from page one I was drawn into the world of Stormfall, a proud and majestic dragon who tells us his story from his time in the egg through to old age.

This is a true autobiography, told solely from Stormfall’s point of view, as he tells us about his life as a free dragon, to when he is captured and begins his life in servitude to humans, or ‘sticks’ as he calls them. His accounts are frank, heartbreaking, and violent.

H.L. Dickson has written a new kind of fantasy here, it is completely original, fascinating and makes you as a reader want to devour the pages. You are consistently aware that you are reading about a dragon yet you feel nothing but affinity for this beautiful creature throughout. There were times where I had to stop reading because the tears were too much, other times where I couldn’t stop laughing, and others where it was gruesome and the pictures in my mind were plain disgusting!

Stormfall’s relationship with one particular stick, the young soul-boy (a boy without a soul) who first captured him is beautiful. The way they bond and will do anything for each other even after large chunks of time separated from each other. That their lives are so similarly paralleled is beautiful and equally heartbreaking.

This book is wonderful on so many levels, in ways I can’t find words to describe. I would urge all fantasy fans to pick this book up and read it, especially those who have a love for dragons (that’s all of us right?!).

I’ve not read H. Leighton Dickson before but will be making a point of reading her back catalogue, she has certainly gained a new fan in me.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleDragon of Ash & Stars: The Autobiography of a Night Dragon
Series: N/A
Author: H. Leighton Dickson
Genre: Fantasy | High Fantasy | Dragons
Publisher: Working Tiger
Publication Date: 26 July 2016
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: Paperback | Audio
Pages: 364
BuyAmazon UK | Amazon US | Book Depository

Blog Tour: Review: Alora’s Tear: Fragments by Nathan Barham @natebarham @NeverlandBT

Welcome to my stop on the Alora’s Tear: Fragments Blog Tour, written by Nathan Barham this is the first book in a trilogy, and if you are eager the whole trilogy is available with book two The Elf and the Arrow, and book three The Voice like Water also on sale.

Description:
There is no magic in the kingdom of Vladvir…

Tucked away in a quiet valley, the community of Tolarenz offers a refuge and safe haven for its people, keeping persecution at bay. One young citizen—Askon son of Teral—is destined to lead them, but first he must leave them behind: one final mission, in service of the king.

Continue reading Blog Tour: Review: Alora’s Tear: Fragments by Nathan Barham @natebarham @NeverlandBT

Review: The Innocent Mage by Karen Miller

Description:
Being a fisherman like his father isn’t a bad life, but it’s not the one that Asher wants. Despite his humble roots, Asher has grand dreams. And they call him to Dorana, home of princes, beggars . . . and the warrior mages who have protected the kingdom for generations.

Continue reading Review: The Innocent Mage by Karen Miller