Title: Air Awakens
Series: Air Awakens #1
Author: Elise Kova
Publisher: Silver Wing Press
Publication Date: August 27, 2015
Genre: Young Adult – Fantasy, Romance
Pages: 320 pages
Format: Purchased eBook
A library apprentice, a sorcerer prince, and an unbreakable magic bond…
The Solaris Empire is one conquest away from uniting the continent, and the rare elemental magic sleeping in seventeen-year-old library apprentice Vhalla Yarl could shift the tides of war.
Vhalla has always been taught to fear the Tower of Sorcerers, a mysterious magic society, and has been happy in her quiet world of books. But after she unknowingly saves the life of one of the most powerful sorcerers of them all—the Crown Prince Aldrik—she finds herself enticed into his world. Now she must decide her future: Embrace her sorcery and leave the life she’s known, or eradicate her magic and remain as she’s always been. And with powerful forces lurking in the shadows, Vhalla’s indecision could cost her more than she ever imagined.
This book was a fun adventure of magic, acceptance, finding inner strength, and more. Once I started I felt compelled to keep reading, I was so drawn in to the story and the world through Vhalla’s eyes.
I felt that this story was one in which was gripping and it made me want to continue turning the page to find out what would happen next: from the society to the magic system, to the library apprentice and the dark prince, to the chaos of war and the fate that was laying before Vhalla, I wanted more.
The plot itself was one that told of a girl named Vhalla who thought her life was little more than becoming an apprentice in the royal library when she one day helps to save the crown prince by searching for ways to rid poison from his body – which, in turn, causes her to be taken to the Tower where she is told that she has magic. In this world, to those whom magic doesn’t choose, magic is a very frightening thing and it causes those without magic to judge those that do. I thought that this was blatant in the story and that it was executed in a manner that showed that fear through multiple perspectives, and the obvious annoyance caused by that bias through others.
The plot also lead to Vhalla growing to learn of her magic and her choices, of learning more about the dark prince and just what his role in her life would be to her, and what it could mean if she allows her magic to Awaken and manifest and grow.
Vhalla was the kind of girl to think little of herself in terms of looks, and though I was annoyed with this at the beginning, it quickly went to the back burner because she so whole-heartedly focused her love and time on reading and books. She poured her heart into her work as a library apprentice, not only do the tasks assigned to her, but taking time to read the books she cleaned and fixed and more. I think that that passion really drove her in the beginning. She was otherwise one who tried to stay away from conflict and was very polite around others, but that didn’t stop her from speaking her mind when it came to talking to the crown prince, Aldrik. At first, he infuriated her, but as time passed and she came to understand him, that annoyance would turn to teasing and eventually genuine conversation and talk. I really enjoyed Vhalla’s character because even though she had up and down swings from being weak to outspoken to being unsure to being strong, I found that to be a relief, in a way. It showed that she is both flawed and capable of growth.
Aldrik was mysterious in the beginning, showing his wit and temper at times, but as time progressed we got to see him become gentler and softer with Vhalla, talking to her as a friend would. I think that he has a difficult time with friendships because of his magical ability and how he is portrayed in the eyes of society as a heartless Fire Lord. But I found him to be a redeeming man, though he also admits to his faults. He was also very protective of Vhalla, and though that’s explained in the book, I still found it to be swoon worthy, in a way. Like many princes in many books he doesn’t show his emotions in certain situations, but subtle hints of what he’s thinking are communicated and I thought them to be affective.
And GOOD GOD I WANTED THE ROMANCE SO BAD. Like, there were so many parts where I was just like, “They’re gonna kiss! They’re gonna kiss!” And then something happens to deter them from it and I got so upset. And then I would wait for the next time, and then the same thing happened! Ahh! But the relationship between Vhalla and Aldrik, though tense sometimes, was also raw and one that drew them to each other more than just because of circumstance, in my opinion.
The side characters were also ones that I either liked or disliked for various reasons, but I still felt connected to them and that they played an important role in the story – that they weren’t just there for plot device or anything. I’m interested to see where some of them take place in the next book because things seem like they’re going to get interesting and I want to know if allegiances will stay or divide.
The magic system in the world is based off of elemental magic with the four main elements of earth, air, water, and fire. Air is the most rare ability because the last Airwalker lived almost 150 years prior. The way that the magic is used seems to stem from the person’s self rather than the elements around them, which is the kind of magic I really enjoy. I hope to see more of it used in the next book because though it wasn’t used much in this book, we got glimpses of the power of Fire, for sure.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book way more than I thought I was going to. It had me constantly turning the page and it kept me craving more.
I rate this book 4.5/5 stars and highly recommend it.