Hey, hey friends! I’m so excited to be back for another @WriteReads blog tour for Knightmare Arcanist. This was such a fun and fast-paced read and I’m so glad this was put on my radar because of this tour 😍 Be sure to check out all the other bloggers participating in this tour over here.
Super big thanks to Dave for organising the tour and to the author, Shami Stovall, for the free copy in exchange for an honest review! Let’s get to it…
Goodreads: Knightmare Arcanist (Frith Chronicles #1)
Publisher: Capital Station Book
Published: 18 June 2019
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Magic. Sailing. A murderer among heroes.
Gravedigger Volke Savan wants nothing more than to be like his hero, the legendary magical swashbuckler, Gregory Ruma. First he needs to become an arcanist, someone capable of wielding magic, which requires bonding with a mythical creature. And he’ll take anything—a pegasus, a griffin, a ravenous hydra—maybe even a leviathan, like Ruma.
So when Volke stumbles across a knightmare, a creature made of shadow and terror, he has no reservations. But the knightmare knows a terrible secret: Ruma is a murderer out to spread corrupted magic throughout their island nation. He’s already killed a population of phoenixes and he intends to kill even more.
In order to protect his home, his adopted sister, and the girl he admires from afar, Volke will need to confront his hero, the Master Arcanist Gregory Ruma.
A fast-paced fantasy with magical creatures for those who enjoy the Furies of Calderon (Codex Alera series) by Jim Butcher, Unsouled (Cradle Series) by Will Wight, and Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan.
Buy a copy: Amazon
When I read the description I knew that I wanted to read this book. It was such an adventure and I was pleasantly surprised to find how much I enjoyed it! While nothing really unexpected happened and the plot was kind of easy to predict, there are times you just need a book where you can shut your mind off and simply enjoy the ride the author takes you on–and this was definitely a fun ride the whole way through!
Stovall’s writing flowed well and was so easy to read that I could’ve easily finished this book in one sitting if I wasn’t reading it during an incredibly hectic period (right now). But every time I was “forced” to put it down–because y’know, work and all that adulting stuff–I really didn’t want to leave the world Stovall created for us readers. The story immediately kicks off with a fast pace and that didn’t slow down until the end. I thought the world building was done well, with enough details to get a clear picture in our mind but with none of the info dumping. What I appreciated most was that we learn about the world beyond the Island of Ruma alongside our MC, Volke. It was ‘charming’ to experience the awe and delight of the different areas of the world and especially the magical/mythical creatures as we encounter them along Volke and Illia’s journey.
“You cannot see the whole tapestry if you stare at a single thread.”
I liked almost all of the characters although there were a few, like Volke’s bullies, who I wanted to seriously knock upside the head! For the most part though, they all had interesting sounding stories and I liked the roles each played. I came to really care for Volke, Illia and Adelgis (with his adorable eldrin). That said, I do wish the character development was done better. I wanted to know more about many of them but unfortunately, only a few of the characters experienced any kind of growth (and not much of it when it happened). I loved the group that we’re “left with” at the end of the story and I started to really get some strong “found family” vibes within the group that I’m really hoping will continue to grow as the series goes on because that’s one of my favourite tropes and I really liked these characters!
Unsurprisingly, my favourite part of the story were the magical creatures/eldrin because duh! They were sentient and each had their own voice/personality and there were so many different kinds of creatures, too. Reading about their different abilities, personalities and their bonds with their arcanists was wonderful–although my favourite was Nicholin. He was such a cheeky and cute little fur ball, I just wanted to scoop him up and squeeze him forever! His sass had me laughing out loud at times! Also, the Atlas Turtle!? Talk about fantastical and amazing 😍 I could so easily picture this part like a Ghibli movie in my head and I loved it!
Overall, this was a really fun and fast paced fantasy adventure that gives you all the magic and magical creatures, journeys across oceans and lands, and likeable characters that are so easy to root for! I can’t wait to continue this series because I’m itching to know what comes next (and guess what? If you have Kindle Unlimited, it’s available to read right now!), so you can bet I already have the next book lined up to read now! 😉
Shami Stovall is a multi-award-winning author of fantasy and science fiction, with several best-selling novels under her belt. Before that, she taught history and criminal law at the college level, and loved every second. When she’s not reading fascinating articles and books about ancient China or the Byzantine Empire, Stovall can be found playing way too many video games, especially RPGs and tactics simulators.
Have you read Knightmare Arcanist or is it on your TBR?