Wednesday, February 21, 2018

TBR Challenge: Grace Draven - Eidolon

In a bid for more power, the Shadow Queen of Haradis has unleashed a malignant force into the world. Her son Brishen, younger prince of the Kai royal house, suddenly finds himself ruler of a kingdom blighted by a diseased darkness and on the brink of war. His human wife Ildiko must decide if she will give up the man she loves in order to secure his throne.
Three enemy kingdoms must unite to save each other, and a one-eyed, reluctant king must raise an army of the dead to defeat an army of the damned.
A tale of alliance and sacrifice.

Comment: Here we are for another TBR Challenge read. This month the theme is Backlist Glom, which means any author who has more than one book in our TBR. 
I chose Grace Draven, not only because I do have more than one book by her to read but also because I wanted to finally read the sequel to Radiance, a book many readers enjoyed in past years and that when I read, expected perfection but it was one or two steps away from it in my perspective. I wanted to see if this Eidolon would measure up and be a good sequel. It was but again there's something missing for me to consider it the best ever.

In this book we have the sequel of what happened at the end of Radiance, now showing us Brishen and Ildiko as a happily married couple living away from the Court and the influence of his evil mother, the queen. However, this villain has unleashed a terrible plague od demons that won't stop until every living creature in their path is dead. The Kai have some magic which means there are rituals they can do to stop the demons from reaching the living too quickly along with the physical barriers of water.
The responsibility of defending all the kingdoms obviously is now Brishen's, as he is the only surviving element of the royal family and who can magically fight the demons. But there's a price for this power and maybe this is too high a task for him and his wife, to bear...

As expected, this book s filled with amazing scenes of magic and fantasy situations that  can be both too far fetched but incredibly alluring to read about. It always fascinates me how authors can invent things in their heads - even with influences - and create a whole world to present. Grace Draven has a certainly creative mind and the "rules" and processes in which things happen are very imaginative and probably the best feature of this book.

This fantasy obviously has a huge conflict to be overridden and there are personal details that make it a difficult task to be done, namely how people are affected by the plague and how survivors might feel guilty they didn't help in time or that they are alive and others don't. The reasons and ways of dealing with this part of the plot seem logical to me, meaning, the steps taken from one situation to the other feel well done and even in a way that makes everything related to the plot feel right.

The story also has romance, which is a huge part of the plot because it focuses a lot on the main couple and the differences between them (mostly physical). Of course the purpose is for us to see that different beings can find happiness together and common ground even in the face of adversity. I also like the details about their individual personalities and their expectations about their marriage and in this particular story how they think about the future and what it means for them to be together when it would be more advisable for Brishen specifically, to marry a Kai woman and not a have a human wife. 
All the situations surrounding this are interesting but... I keep feeling the relationship is too easy between them. What I mean is, I like they are in sync with one another and that they are in love but I'd love to see more about their feelings and hopes and challenges. I feel what we have seen here wasn't enough to convince me their marriage is as strong as intended. But perhaps this only me.

As a whole, this story has all the elements to be a good one, the romance is good and the relationship not easily broken but I kind of expected more, I wanted all the elements to be so well mixed that I wouldn't be able to not think about this. In the end, I liked it a lot but there's still something missing.
Grade: 8/10


  1. Sounds like this one had a lot of good elements. It has been a while since I've read fantasy, but that's what I love about them -- the fascination I have with how the author comes up with the world.

    1. This author has imagination, alright. I just think she is a bit too subtle in some details...