Prince Galian is third in line to the throne, but prefers his place as a resident at the Royal Kylaen Hospital. When his father urges him to join the military to help reclaim their colony, Galian is forced to put aside his oath to Do No Harm and fight a war he does not believe in.
Across the great Madion Sea, Captain Theo Kallistrate dreams of a day when she is no longer bound by conscription to fight for her country’s independence. But when the Kylaens threaten, honor and duty call her to the front lines to fight off the oppressors.
When an air skirmish goes wrong, both Theo and Galian crash on a remote island hundreds of miles from either nation. Grievously injured, Theo must rely on Galian’s medical expertise, and Galian must rely on Theo’s survival skills, to live another day in a harsh and unforgiving terrain.
Can they put aside their differences long enough to survive? Or will the war that brought them to the island tear them apart?
By S. Usher Evans
My rating: 4.5/5
I’m not going to lie, when I read the back I was not exactly enthused. I thought this was going to be a book filled with clichés and I would hate the whole thing. Now don’t get me wrong there are some clichés but I found I didn’t mind them as much. There is the royalty falls for lowly citizens and torn apart by a war trope, but I didn’t even really notice it there. It was a unique story. But I’m happy to report there is absolutely no love triangle! Love triangles are what I can’t stand above all else.
I really liked how we got both points of view and the parallels we saw between the two. I really liked the bickering and dynamic between Theo and Galian. I loved the unique names and how the author sprinkled in the unique language of the Raven people. I loved seeing the culture of the two different sides. It was also nice to see the prejudices and ideas the sides had about each other and how wrong they were. One thing I admired more than anything is that both girl and boy Ravens were conscripted.
Theo wasn’t another Katniss, it was refreshing. She wasn’t the chosen one or born for this. She survived on will and skill alone. Skills she’d fought for and learned in battle. I loved the worldbuilding too. I really felt like I was on that island with them. I could feel their desperation and hunger. I loved the journey both of them had to go through: both to see the other side as not an enemy and specifically Galian to see that his family are indeed monsters and that the Raven people aren’t as stupid and naïve as he thought.
It ended with sort of a cliff hanger, leaving me tweeting the author for book two. I honestly couldn’t put it down.
About the Author: Usher Evans is an author, blogger, and witty banter aficionado. Born in Pensacola, Florida, she left the sleepy town behind for the fast-paced world of Washington, D.C. There, she somehow landed jobs with BBC, Discovery Channel, and National Geographic Television before finally settling into a “real job” as an IT consultant. After a quarter-life crisis at age 27, she decided consulting was for the birds and rekindled a childhood passion for writing novels. She sold everything she owned and moved back to Pensacola, where she currently resides with her two dogs, Zoe, and Mr. Biscuit.
Evans is the author of the Razia series and Empath, both published by Sun’s Golden Ray Publishing.