Crystal Crowned by Elise Kova ARC Review

Crystal Crowned CoverCrystal Crowned by Elise Kova (Air Awakens #5)

Publisher: Silver Wing Press

Release Date: July 12,2016

Pages: 432

Summary: Long live Solaris.

One bloodthirsty ruler has been overthrown by another, casting the shadow of death over the Solaris Empire. Vhalla Yarl stands upon the stage of fate, prepared to do battle one final time. Fragile alliances will be tested and new bonds will be formed as the world is reshaped. She fights as the champion of peace, but when the night is darkest will she be able to pay the price of a new dawn?

My Rating: Full StarFull StarFull StarFull Starhalf star--Book Blog

My Thoughts: I can’t believe its over!

I’m still at a loss for words!

Looking back on the very first novel Air Awakens, I truly saw how much Vhalla and Aldrik grew and matured over the course of the series!

When this novel starts Vhalla & the team are finding a way to rebuild an army to not only to reclaim Aldrik’s throne, but also find a way to destroy Victor, who not only took over Aldrik’s throne, but is also using his magic from the Crystals to create his own army!

What makes this series great and unique is the politics and world building!

Both of those aspects are explored in much more depth in this final book and becomes quite an integral part of the story.

Elise does a spectacular job at creating such a rich and vivid world and magic system. Her descriptions from the clothing, food, setting, and characters truly made the Solaris Empire feel so real.

With Vhalla’s past hinted at in previous novels, it was great to see Vhalla’s father introduced + getting more background on her family life!

What raised the stakes for this series was definitely Victor’s character! He is led to believe that Vhalla is gone and he has full control over Aldrik’s throne. So Vhalla and her team have to stay hidden for as long as they can, to gather enough supporters who are willing to take down Victor!

I loved that aspect of the story, because not only does it give more world building, with the long travels, but it really gave time to expand/develop on the number of characters we’ve come to know in the series!

Vhalla becomes much more powerful as the novel progresses. She finds her place as a royal and her relationship w/ Aldrik is truly put to the test.

Aldrik wants a marriage which would both unify the people politically, while also making Aldrik happy! However Vhalla feels there are other priorities at stake! Kova does a wonderful job at illustrating the pros/cons to both of their decisions!

Kova also does a spectacular job at illustrating the effects this war has on the empire!

I will admit, there are some issues I had with this novel. The pacing, where I felt it was much slower compared to the previous novels.

However, building an army doesn’t happen overnight, nor does rebuilding an empire! So I can definitely see from a plot perspective why the pacing was how it was!

+ As we reach the conclusion for the final battle,Vhalla has created a “connection” w/ Victor after coming in contact w/ the crystals and gets “tainted”!

Which causes to not only use her powers more aggressively, but then her attitude starts to change towards her friends/companions when they ask her whats wrong.

My issue with that was ,in my opinion, it felt like her attitude/personality change almost instantly and she really put herself in danger b/c of it!

From a plot perspective+looking at the overall story however, I can definitely see why that scene was necessary!

Characters we didn’t get much background on in previous books, such as Elicia + Jax get a more prominent role in this novel which I loved! It was also great to see how their past/background transformed them into the characters we see in this final novel!

*There is also an epilogue*

It was absolutely perfect! We get closure to the characters we’ve come to know, while also seeing what the war left behind!

There are no words to describe just how magical this series/journey has been for me as a reader!

This final novel is filled with rich world-building, wonderful characters, moments of laughter, sadness, happiness!

Battles are fought, relationships/friendships are tested, tears of happiness/sadness are shed!

This novel is a spectacular conclusion to a series that is truly unique and magical from its wonderful characters and world-building, to its high stakes plot that reminded me why I will always love YA Fantasy ❤ ❤

 

 

 

 

Yallwest 2016 Tips/Tricks

Yallwest Tips+Tricks.jpgWith Yallwest right around the corner, I thought I’d make a post giving you my personal tips/tricks for making the most out of your trip!

1.Planning!

This one is huge! Having been to Yallwest last year, I had a feeling there would be a decent amount of people.

But I underestimated just how many there were!

Its best to make a list/outline for all the authors/panels/ etc. you want to see!

Make sure you know the times for your signings/panels so your not rushing at the last minute!

+ If your going in a group, that would definitely make much easier to go from line to line!

1a. Pack your books in order of the author/time! With so much going on, this definitely helped me when the lines for others= authors started one after the other!

2.What To Bring (Besides All The Books :’D)

Definitely bring extra money!  For lunch or if you need to buy that last-minute book!

Snacks+ a water bottle (some lines can get pretty long!)

Sunscreen/Umbrella! -Most of the festival takes place outside, so it would be best to bring them just in case!

Camera w/ extra batteries/Phone w/ charger- Some (Not All) authors were allowed to take pictures!

+ If you want to document the event def. bring something to take pictures/record!

**- If you have fan art for the authors, it also wouldn’t hurt to bring it & have it signed!

*** To save time and make sure everyone can get there books signed, I recommend putting your sticky-note/post-it with your name in your books ahead of time!

If any author’s lines gets really packed, this can definitely move the line along.

However, there will also be volunteers w/ sticky notes+markers in case you forget!

3.Networking

Since I started my blog well after Yallwest, I obviously didn’t use the opportunity to network!

But now that I do have one, I will have some business cards ready to connect w/ other book bloggers/booktubers/bookstagramers!

+ it’ll def. be fun to make some new bookish friends! ❤

If you have any other Tips/Tricks for Yallwest, leave them in the comments below! 🙂