I’d like to express my gratitude to Pan MacMillan Australia for sending me a review copy of Roar by Cora Carmack. The review below is completely my own view.
In a land ruled and shaped by violent magical storms, power lies with those who control them.
Aurora Pavan comes from one of the oldest Stormling families in existence. Long ago, the ungifted pledged fealty and service to her family in exchange for safe haven, and a kingdom was carved out from the wildlands and sustained by magic capable of repelling the world’s deadliest foes. As the sole heir of Pavan, Aurora’s been groomed to be the perfect queen. She’s intelligent and brave and honorable. But she’s yet to show any trace of the magic she’ll need to protect her people.
To keep her secret and save her crown, Aurora’s mother arranges for her to marry a dark and brooding Stormling prince from another kingdom. At first, the prince seems like the perfect solution to all her problems. He’ll guarantee her spot as the next queen and be the champion her people need to remain safe. But the more secrets Aurora uncovers about him, the more a future with him frightens her. When she dons a disguise and sneaks out of the palace one night to spy on him, she stumbles upon a black market dealing in the very thing she lacks—storm magic. And the people selling it? They’re not Stormlings. They’re storm hunters.
Legend says that her ancestors first gained their magic by facing a storm and stealing part of its essence. And when a handsome young storm hunter reveals he was born without magic, but possesses it now, Aurora realizes there’s a third option for her future besides ruin or marriage.
She might not have magic now, but she can steal it if she’s brave enough.
Challenge a tempest. Survive it. And you become its master.
After finishing this book for nearly a month, I present to you my spoiler-free review.
Rating: 2.5/3 stars
Yo girl really wished she enjoyed this one more. I’ve read great reviews about this novel and I have to say I’m truly disappointed. But that doesn’t mean it’s all bad, I am quite certain that one of the reasons I didn’t enjoy it too much is I read it at the wrong time *sigh*. Anyways, Let me break it down for you. I may or may not have
forgotten remembered everything, but I’m really trying here so just bear with me please thanks.
PLOT. When I first saw Roar floating around on Goodreads I was like “YES I WANT THIS! GIMME!” – I mean we have a badass storm magic system
(if we can even call it that), some cool-af storm hunters, a high-key messed-up kingdom on the edge of falling, a lonesome girl with an identity crisis wanting to escape from an arranged marriage to a prince – it’s the kind of “typical” fantasy quest and it sounded promising to me okay. WRONG – uh uh.
There were a few troupes that I generally tend to avoid – e.g.: the-alpha-male-thing, insta-fucking-unrealistic-love, everyone-is-so-fucking-good-looking-how-the-actual-heck, and the so-cheesy-I-need-some-anti-emetics-stat. You get the gist. To be honest, not a lot happened (that I found exciting anyway) between the events and it got so boring for me. On top of that, it’s kinda like a big loop of a journey and a lot of things are still unexplained and I was in the WTF mode pretty much all the time.
The plot has huge potential to grow so don’t get me wrong, it’s just that there were huge drags and certain repetitions that I wasn’t a huge fan of. Romance was there, but again, the male-alpha thing didn’t work on me sigh, I just wish I could unread some scenes and save myself some time and live a happy life as a penguin in Antartica. BUT if you’re into the alpha-male thing – then GO FOR YAH LIFE, you’ll are definitely gonna like this more than I did.
CHARACTERS. Okay, I’ll start with Rora, our gorgeous princess with beautiful platinum hair. She is the kind of “soft” heroine that grew HEAPS in the period of the novel, and I liked that, and I did enjoy seeing her development from a closeted princess to a much stronger woman. I particularly enjoyed reading her POV (oh yes the book has multiple POVs so yah FYI) during the first third of the novel. But later on, it kinda went downhill and I was just so UGH to the point of “oh dude not her again”.
Next up we have Locke, ummmmmmmmm…. yeah I ain’t a fan. I mean he’s nice and sweet at times, but I don’t know I just don’t see him and Rora together down the track. He gives the vibe that “oh all pretty, young, weak, innocent girls like Rora needs protecting because they can’t do a thing” – I mean he does show support and let Rora tries to do stuff but he just keep giving me that vibe idk why. Yeah there’s that.
And theeeeen, we have CASSIUS. He has this Darkling-vibe
whom I’m a sucker for so I kinda wish there was more about him. He IS however, a possessive jerk, so there’s that too. But I do low-key prefer him over Lockle…
And yeah, as you can tell by now, I ain’t a fan of the characters. I DO LIKE THE SIDE CHARACTERS THOUGH!!!! CAN WE TALK abOuT NOVA!!!?? She 140% reminded me of Nehemia from TOG and gosh I can’t. She deserves all the recognition and if I – IF – I decide to pick up book 2 in the not so near future, I hope we see much more of Nova.
WRITING + WORLD-BUILDING. The storm system is COOL, and has potential to be epic but I found it so confusing and I don’t know if the storms are elemental-like-whirlpools or elemental-shit-coming off a cloud. Perhaps I just lack that imagination lmao, my bad then.
I’ve been discussing with one of my writer friends, and we both agreed that the editing of this book could have been done a lot better, there were just so many unnecessary words and fluffs that could be edited out. The book would be much less thick and I would have finished it earlier and perhaps add another star and a half.
OVERALL. On the bottom line, this story has huge potential so I hope things pick up real fast
I mean it should considering that ending for the readers. And if the magical system could be explained better that WOULD BE AWESOME thanks in advance.