The Rise of the DawnstarFeatured
The seven kingdoms of Avalonia are crumbling and evil is spreading across the land like a plague. Queen Morgana is close to finding a way to open the Book of Abraxas and it’s only a matter of time until she uses the power trapped inside its pages to enslave the entire world.
With Avalonia growing more dangerous by the day, Aurora must travel through war-torn lands and deep into the heart of the fae kingdom of Elfi. Her goal is to find a legendary weapon infused with the last of the realm’s ancient magic—the only weapon in the world powerful enough to stop the queen.
Aurora might have survived her first battle against Morgana, but the true fight to save her kingdom and restore her throne has only just begun…
Silver award winner in IBPA's Benjamin Franklin Awards 2018
Finalist in the 2018 EPIC eBook Awards
Notable Indie in Self Unbound’s 2018 Best Indie Book
Silver Medal winner in the 2017 Moonbeam Children's Book Awards
Bronze Medal winner in the 2017 Readers' Favorite Book Award
What I Liked:
When I read the first installment in the Avalonia Chronicles, I quickly fell in love with its world-building, for Farah Oomerbhoy introduces us to an incredible world where magic reigns. I loved the idea of the seven kingdoms ruled by mages, and also the co-existence of magical creatures along with the fae. However, I thought the same wonder I had back when I read The Last of the Firedrakes would not be something I would find in The Rise of the Dawnstar. I'm pleased to say that I was terribly wrong. In fact, Farah Oomerbhoy expertly expands her world, enchanting us readers with her creativity and dedication to make every nook and cranny so vivid and real, to the point that I can almost imagine a portal is about to open and suck me right into Avalonia.
I loved that this time we get to travel longer distances, Aurora testing her abilities and fighting foes on her way to Elfi, the kingdom of the Fae. It's not an easy journey and more often than not, Aurora comes to very close calls, but I'm glad that through these experiences Aurora finally realizes that no matter how strong she is, she is still new to this world and her inexperience is more probable to cause harm than good. She is a great character, a bit too impulsive and reckless, but her growth in this installment impressed me and I'm happy she finally took the time to acknowledge her weaknesses. The moment she sets foot in Elfi, she grows more into the heroine I knew was inside her all along.
Oh, but this series sure messes with my feels! I love when YA fantasy books have book princes, but Farah Oomerbhoy not only has one, but *counts with fingers* THREE official swoon-worthy princes (plus several other). I thought my heart was set in stone when it came to Prince Rafael, but then I met Tristan, Dark Prince of the Night Court, and Santino, the Pirate Prince. How does one choose? I'm completely smitten, and not only because they are great potential love interests (okay, maybe just two of them), but these characters are intriguing and a great help towards Aurora's success.
But what I loved the most about The Rise of the Dawnstar is that there's never a dull moment. This book is action-packed and so adventurous! Whenever and wherever Aurora stops to rest, there's always something that has her, and her companions, moving or fighting for their lives. Not to mention that there was always that constant danger of backstabbing and finding traitors in the midst of allies. Ack, so entertaining and I'm sure many will find themselves flipping pages non-stop just like me!
What Didn't Do It For Me:
There's not much that I can say about this book that I did not like. It's a great read and it had me at the edge of my seat the whole time. However, I do think it is worth mentioning that while I do love Aurora's love interest, Prince Rafael, I must admit that I dislike how he keeps pursuing her when he shouldn't. He is betrothed and Aurora often feels guilty for giving in when he seeks her out, which didn't sit that well with me. It's unfair and sometimes it felt a bit off-character. Might be just personal taste. ;)
The Rise of the Dawnstar by Farah Oomerbhoy is now my favorite installment in the series but one that left me in desperate need to read book three. With amazing characters and excellent world-building, this exciting sequel is one not to be missed!