I received this book for free from the author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Series: Elemental Enchanters #1
Published by indie, Indie World Publishing & Author Services on June 10th 2014
Genres: Fantasy, Magic, YA Romance
Source: the author
Falling in love isn’t the only problem for Ava Hannigan.Amazon •
When seventeen-year-old Ava discovers that she can breathe underwater, she’s disappointed. She wanted to be normal and dreads the day of her initiation into one of the most powerful covens of Elemental Enchanters. She has fallen in love with a human, which is forbidden, but she has such a strong connection with Peter, the only other person who knows what it’s like to grow up motherless.
Ava and her friends never expected to be caught up in the middle of a three-hundred-year-old war. Devon wants revenge against the humans for killing his master. Xavier, a ruthless witch, is building an army for Devon by spellbinding several students into becoming dark Enchanters. After Xavier realizes Ava and her friends are Elementals, Devon will stop at nothing to have their power. Xavier threatens Ava, attempting to coerce her to join them, but when she refuses, he kidnaps Peter.
Ava must seek help from her coven to defeat Devon and accept her life as a witch in order to save Peter and protect the humans.
Mature-Content Rating: Violence, Abuse, Mild Sexual Themes
“Xavier Holstone elegantly glided across the white tiled floor with a crooked smile as if he liked that everyone stared at his tanned skin and ash blond hair. His oval face was severe with high cheekbones and a perfectly straight nose. His muscular, but thin, build made a few girls blush, though his dark eyes saw no one as he made his way to an empty table in the back. Ava didn’t really think he was attractive, but there was something dangerous about him.”
Under a Blood Moon is the first in a series about a group of teenage Enchanters first gaining their powers and then immediately being thrown into the darkest kind of evil their world knows.
The story was intriguing enough to keep me reading all the way till the end, but there were choppy points, plot holes, and plain and simple character screw-ups that had me cringing. To start off, I never did figure out just why the book was given its title. It could be that I missed something, but I usually keep my eyes open for that, and plus the title should be obvious.
As I read on I was deep into the plot and the characters, but the relationships between Ava and the others in her coven kept me from developing a strong link with any of them. Jeremy, the only one in the coven I felt like I could connect with, seemed to barely have a part at all. The two really strong characters that held this book together were Peter, Ava’s main love interest, and Xavier, one of the main antagonists. I have to give one complete star just for Xavier, the arrogant jerk that is makes it feel so good to hate.
Ava was always quick to figure out the goings-on, but slow to respond if she responded at all. There were many times things could have been prevented if Ava would have just responded correctly to the situation. Likewise, the others in her coven were quick to dismiss her thoughts without any real explanation why. Richards did do a great job of weaving the story of Ava’s mother and father into her own, though.
Most of the interaction between Ava and Peter was amusing or sweet or agonizing thanks to Peter’s character that takes control, but near the end of the book there’s a long interaction between the two that can only be described as a Q&A session. Peter asks a question, Ava answers, Peter asks, Ava answers, Peter asks… Richards was trying to relay information to both Peter and the readers quickly, but that little session seemed really fake and bored me.
The powers. Oh, the powers! What is a book on magic without interesting powers? This is just the first installment of the series and the teens are just learning what they can do with their magic, but there’s great potential and lots of room for Richards to play with, and hopefully introductions to more coven members with special powers of their own.
Overall, Under a Blood Moon is a good, quick paranormal read for those that like magic and elements with a touch of romance between the pages.
Under the Burning Stars
Everyone said it was over. But Ava knew it was just the beginning.
After risking everything and beating the odds to be with the love of her life, Peter, life should be good for Ava. Far from it. An altercation with the humans has left him struggling with his new life as an Enchanter, and Ava can feel him slipping away. Nightmares of her mother’s murder haunt her, and leave her grappling with the darkness inside herself. She will stop at nothing to uncover the truth about her mother, even if that truth is more dangerous than anything she’s faced before.
After her search for knowledge lands her on the verge of banishment from her coven, Ava must seek forgiveness from everyone and forge her own destiny as the coven faces an onslaught of war.