Mundie Moms

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

REIGN THE EARTH by A.C. Gaughen / Book Review #ReignTheEarth #Elementae

By: A.C. Gaughen
Published by: Bloomsbury
To Be Released on: January 30th, 2018
SeriesThe Elementae #1
Pre-Order fromBloomsbury | Amazon | B&N
Add it to Goodreads

Rating: 5 Stars
A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review

Shalia is a proud daughter of the desert, but after years of devastating war with the adjoining kingdom, her people are desperate for peace. Willing to trade her freedom to ensure the safety of her family, Shalia becomes Queen of the Bonelands.

But she soon learns that her husband, Calix, is motivated only by his desire to exterminate the Elementae—mystical people who can control earth, wind, air, and fire. Even more unsettling are Shalia’s feelings for her husband’s brother, which unleash a power over the earth she never knew she possessed—a power that could get her killed. As rumors of a rebellion against Calix spread, Shalia must choose between the last chance for peace and her own future as an Elementae.

This intense, richly drawn high-fantasy by the author of Scarlet will hold readers spellbound.

A fantastic fantasy! This is one spellbinding read. This book has it all; desert magic, elemental power, romance, danger, one incredibly tough heroine, and a shocking twist I never saw coming. This book was worth it's long awaited release. I'm long been a fan of Gaughen's, but I think this may be her best book yet! That's saying something, because her other books are fantastic. 

I'm still trying to process this story. Gaughen wrote such a mesmerizing, complex story. Her writing is richly detailed, and easily springs to life on the pages of this book. With it's rich history, memorizing elemental magic, lore, mixed with incredibly world building and characters I absolutely loved getting to know, it wasn't hard to not get sucked into this story. There's definitely a few twists, and a shocking reveal I didn't even except. I loved it. Not to mention there's a villain who is so easy to despise. 

The characters are one of my favorite elements of this book. All of them are incredibly detailed and in-depth characters I emotionally felt connected to (except the villain, Calix). I loved Shalia. She is a character my heart broke for, as well as easily cheered on. She is an incredible heroine, and a character I greatly admired. She's fierce, loyal, independent, smart, as well as broken. She's a leader as well as a survivor. I admired her strength and her hope. Even in the situations when all seems lost, she doesn't give up. 

To match Shalia's resilience, are some characters I absolutely loved getting to know. Including her friends, her brothers, and Galen. I loved that every character had a purpose in this story. There are some characters who are so easy to love, and some that are so easy to despise. Galen was such a fantastic surprise! He's light to his brother, Calix's darkness. 

Talk about a villain who doesn't spare anyone when it comes to his abuse, and his evil reign. Shalia endures much, as does the people she comes to love when it comes to Calix. He is a cringe worthy villain who is probably one of the best written villains I've read in a long time. I do want to mention there are darker themes in this book, including that of emotional abuse. Calix is a ruthless villain, and no-one is spared when it comes to his abuse of power, and evil ways, including Shalia, his siblings, and those he rules over.

This story really does have it all. I felt like the elemental part of this story as well as the setting were such important parts of the story. Instead of just telling the reader about them, Gaughen makes you feel as though you're in the story, witnessing the power of those that wield the elemental power. The setting is so vivid. It's beauty, and hardness all rolled up into one. 

Just, WOW! Gaughen has really out done herself with this richly layered story. This book was everything I could have hoped this story would be and so much more. My word, I'm tempted to re-read it again after writing my review. I can not wait to read the next book in this series.