Raedan Warrior Series, Book 1
So, Ingrid read this book a few years ago, back when it was called Necromancer Rising. Abbott recently re-released it with a new title; it’s possible that the text was also updated, but if so, the changes weren’t significant, because everything Ingrid wrote in her review is still true.
However, as someone who has likely read more paranormal romance than Ingrid had when she first reviewed this book, I have a few additional notes for potential readers.
- When Ingrid said this book is dark, she wasn’t kidding. It’s not just the villains who are decapitating people. Both the hero and the heroine kill people in cold blood—and not just in battle. In fact, a central internal conflict for Adeline is what her relationship with dark magic will be.
- This is a fated mates book, with the twist that William was not *entirely* honest with Adeline about why her powers weren’t working. So we’ve got a bit of dishonest beginnings here to spice up the fate, which was a fun twist. Also a fun twist: both William and Adeline can sense that they are uniquely attuned to each other.
- I would also call this an age-gap romance. William is 500, give or take a century. Adeline is 21 (plus the fourteen years she was dead). While this is fairly standard in paranormal romance, Adeline’s youth and naïvité were really played up here.
- The worldbuilding is somewhat uneven. Ingrid noted that she relied on the author to explain who actually died and who didn’t; part of that is that there seemed to be inconsistencies in how to kill an immortal. Some vampires die when you break their necks, and some don’t. On a bigger picture, there are a LOT of characters representing a LOT of different kinds of creatures, so there’s not really space to flesh them all out. Even creatures who appear frequently in paranormal romance—such as werewolves and vampires—don’t seem to follow standard genre formulas for how they should behave.
- A corollary to #4: Some of the characterization is uneven. Part of this is, I think, a feature of having so many characters, but I couldn’t really get a bead on William or Adeline either.
- With that said, the plot moves at a brisk pace and kept my attention. And some of the secondary characters were just weirdly delightful.
As a sidenote, the villain here is the Morrigan, and Abbott also wrote/is writing a trilogy all about this particular triple goddess from her/their perspective—which would be a fun companion piece to read in parallel with this story and its sequels, if you decide you like gore and antiheroes. (I reviewed the second part of that trilogy here.)
Anyways, read on for Ingrid’s original review, which covers thoughtful things like tension and pacing.
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