Grishma (Necoh Saga #1)
As a young boy, Ryder lived with his family, deep in the caves underneath the Kadin Forest, unaware of the horrors of the world. His simple world was turned upside down one horrible night when Grishma attacked his family, killing his father and kidnapping his mother and younger sister.
From that night on, Ryder devoted his life to killing Grishma. He tracked the monster from Necoh, to our world, and back again. Unfortunately, during his quest, he accidentally transported Brooklyn, a high school junior into his tumultuous world, where she is mistakenly identified as Princess Sophie, the missing princess of Sumner.
Days after Princess Sophie's return, Grishma plots and manipulates the King into drugging and marrying off his only daughter to Prince Algid of Dratun. Desperate to save Brooklyn, who now believes she is the long lost princess, his mother, and his little sister, Ryder embarks on the deadliest part of his quest.
Will he save Brooklyn?
Will she ever regain her memory?
What will become of his mother and sister?
Through epic adventure, loss, and love, GRISHMA depicts the strength of the human spirit and the tight bonds formed by the unique creatures of Necoh.
The book begins with the story of Ryder, a boy who is forced into manhood upon witnessing his father’s death at the hands of a hideous beast that has plagued his homeland of Necoh. I love Ryder! He is the epitomy of a young adult hero. Struggling to become a leader, he battles his own internal doubts while trying to show confidence in his decisions. Yet, in light of trying to appear confident, he is always willing to take the advice of others.
Enter Brooklyn: a normal teenager whose biggest worry in life is her annoying, yet loveable, older brother Jax and what he will do next to embarrass her in front of her high school crush. Brooklyn first lays eyes on Ryder at a party where he is trying to blend in. The chemistry between them is strong and immediate; a true love at first sight interaction, but Brooklyn shies away from the encounter at first. I struggled to relate to Brooklyn at first, she seemed just a little too contrived for me. But she was not left this way. She grows and changes with the story into a person that I was very invested in. After she is drugged by Grishma, making her think she is the lost Princess Sophie, the author cleverly changed her third-person references to that of Sophie. A very nice way to cement that fact that she really believed she was the Princess.
One thing I hate in a book is when the main characters go from meeting/hating each other to suddenly being deeply in love with no back story on how the relationship developed. This was not an issue in this story. The relationship between Brooklyn and Ryder develops slowly, almost painfully slow, but the reader has time to digest and grow with the characters.
Ryder’s journey to find Brooklyn is joined along the way by several Necohian creatures willing to help. They form a band of unlikely heros who each have something to prove and something to gain. Each of these creatures is a loveable character in their own right. Who are my favorite characters? – Pidifer and Cridifer! They are orvbas, small stumpy creatures, and brothers. The epitomise the meaning of brotherly love and sacrifice. Plus I just picture them as being so darn cute (like little teddy bears, or something)!
Every time I thought I had this book figured out I was thrown a curveball! The rise and fall of action is so well placed it maintained my interest throughout the entire story. Ryder and Brooklyn cross paths so many times only to be pulled apart again!
This story is reminiscent of The Chronicles of Narnia, written with a modern young adult theme. I even picture Grishma as a cross between Aslan and Buckbeak (the hippogriff from Harry Potter) with a serious mean streak and a manipulative personality. With all of the original creatures, this is one of those stories that would make an epic motion picture! (One I would be first in line to see)
I highly recommend this book for fans of the Chronicles of Narnia but who are looking for something with a modern romantic twist. There are some adult situations portrayed in the story, but they are subtle. I would recommend this book for ages 15-18 (and for those young at heart).
A sequel to this title is already in the works and I cannot wait to get my hands on it!
Check out my full review at Reviewing Wonderland!