Author: Sara Ella
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Source: Publisher Provided – thank you, TNZ Fiction!
Publication Date: 2017
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E L S E W H E R E
Genre: Fiction; Fantasy, Young Adult Contemporary
Series: Unblemished, Book 2
Romantic, adventurous and fulfilling, Unraveling soars above the fray with its poignant themes of true beauty and true love.
REVIEW | In the aftermath of her life forever changing, Eliyana Ember is about to be crowned queen of her new realm (aka the place she’s meant to now call home). Growing up in contemporary New York, El is thrust into a world of fantasy and unexpected dangers. Being queen of this realm means she must prove wrong the deflated expectations her subjects have of her reign.
Further complicating things is the Kiss of Infinity she shared with a boy gone physically, but never far from her mind. Their bond won’t be denied despite the efforts of her fiancé, Joshua. The boy El once thought she loved without reservations. Now she questions everything. Is Joshua still the boy she loves? Why does she have this unexplained connection to Ky? And who or what is behind the Callings failure?
Same as is the story with Unblemished, this follow up novel is a kind of magical experience. Booktuber Sara Ella wrote an emotionally complex YA novel with her debut and her sequel keeps that same powerful storytelling without suffering “middle book syndrome.” Book two picks up where its prequel leaves off, and delves into more emotionally intriguing and complex mind-bending queries.
“Because true beauty comes from within, from the person you are.” – Sara Ella
What I love most about this series (or perhaps clarification is necessary: one of the things I love best) is that this is more about the emotional cliffhangers than edge-of-your-seat thrills. Tis true I’m a proponent of nail-biting suspense, but sometimes it’s nice to read something that’s character focused rather than event driven. This helps the reader learn more about these characters and helps “ground” us in their version of reality.
In conclusion, Unraveling is a solid, intriguing and breathtaking adventure that follows up its predecessor in a memorable fashion. Every part of this novel is unique. It’s these elements that blend fantasy (a world that feels a little bit like The Mortal Instruments) with a strong fairytale “voice.” By this I mean, this novel (series) doesn’t fall prey to the same-old, same-old mantra so many of its peers do. Sara keeps the voices fresh, engaging and pressing towards more secrets that help the reader better grasp the story and its inhabitants.
One thing those of us who love romance will love is the “resolution” of the romantic entanglement. Saying more about this is bound to wander into spoilers which makes me hesitant to continue, but I will say that (for me) answers do reveal themselves. It’s not the kind of answer that means there won’t be complications in book three, but it’s a decisive choice that gives me a sense the back-and-forth will be in the right frame of mind. Unraveling easily outwits the competition with its smart narrative and equally interesting protagonists.
Romantic, adventurous and fulfilling, Unraveling soars above the competitive fray with its poignant themes of true beauty and true love. It challenges its readers in the best ways and makes us pause while still giving its readers an adventure not to be missed. ♥
Synopsis: What happens when happily ever after starts to unravel?
Eliyana Ember doesn’t believe in true love. Not anymore. After defeating her grandfather and saving the Second Reflection, El only trusts what’s right in front of her. The tangible. The real. Not some unexplained Kiss of Infinity she once shared with the ghost of a boy she’s trying to forget. She has more important things to worry about–like becoming queen of the Second Reflection, a role she is so not prepared to fill.
Now that the Verity is intertwined with her soul and Joshua’s finally by her side, El is ready to learn more about her mysterious birth land, the land she now rules. So why does she feel like something–or someone–is missing?
When the thresholds begin to drain and the Callings, those powerful magical gifts, begin to fail, El wonders if her link to Ky Rhyen may have something to do with it. For light and darkness cannot coexist. She needs answers before the Callings disappear altogether. Can El find a way to sever her connection to Ky and save the Reflections–and keep herself from falling for him in the process? – Goodreads
Coming Next from Sara Ella, Unbreakable: Eliyana Ember is stranded in a foreign country in the Third Reflection with no passport, the inability to mirrorwalk, and zero clue where the nearest Thresholds back into the Fourth or Second might lie. Her mind is a haze, her memories vague. She knows a wormhole from the Fourth sent her here. She remembers her mom and baby brother Evan. Makai and Stormy and Joshua . . .
Deep down El realizes she must end the Void once and for all. Is there a way to trap the darkness within its current vessel, kill it off completely? To do so would mean sacrificing another soul—the soul of a man Joshua claims is a traitor. But he’s lied to her before, and even El senses Joshua can’t be fully trusted, but one thing is certain . . .
The Void must be annihilated. And only the Verity—the light which birthed the darkness—can put an end to that which seeks to kill and destroy. – Goodreads, May 2018
Sincere thanks to TNZ Fiction (the publisher) for providing a complimentary copy of this book. All opinions are my own.