Monday, May 22, 2017

Monday #Review - The Alchemists of Loom by @EliseKova #YALit #Fantasy #Steampunk

Series: Loom Saga # 1
Format: Kindle, 395 pages
Release Date: January 10, 2017
Publisher: Keymaster Press 
Source: Amazon
Genre: Young Adult / Fantasy / Epic

Her vengeance. His vision.

Ari lost everything she once loved when the Five Guilds’ resistance fell to the Dragon King. Now, she uses her unparalleled gift for clockwork machinery in tandem with notoriously unscrupulous morals to contribute to a thriving underground organ market. There isn’t a place on Loom that is secure from the engineer turned thief, and her magical talents are sold to the highest bidder as long as the job defies their Dragon oppressors.

Cvareh would do anything to see his sister usurp the Dragon King and sit on the throne. His family’s house has endured the shame of being the lowest rung in the Dragons’ society for far too long. The Alchemist Guild, down on Loom, may just hold the key to putting his kin in power, if Cvareh can get to them before the Dragon King’s assassins.

When Ari stumbles upon a wounded Cvareh, she sees an opportunity to slaughter an enemy and make a profit off his corpse. But the Dragon sees an opportunity to navigate Loom with the best person to get him where he wants to go.

He offers her the one thing Ari can’t refuse: A wish of her greatest desire, if she brings him to the Alchemists of Loom

The Alchemists of Loom is the first installment in author Elise Kova's Loom Saga. Kova's world is dirty, dark, dreary, and well thought out. The story is filled with extraordinary characters like Arianna (Ari) "The White Wraith" who continues to carry a high bounty. Then there is Cvareh, a Dragon who has an agenda all of his own. He belongs to the Dragon House Xin, which is lead by his own sister. Cvareh's goal is to remove the Dragon King, and replace him with his sister Petra. Which leads him to a partnership with Ari and Florence.

Florence is the third character to keep an eye on. She escaped a brutal past and the Raven's Guild to become Ari's initiate. She is remarkable with weapons, and really gets her fair share of story time, which I have learned will continue into the next installment for which I was just approved for. YES! 
There are actually two worlds that are featured in this story. Loom, the place where most of the Fenthri population lives, and the main setting of the book, and Nova where Dragons live and the King of Dragons who rules both worlds resides in all his glory. 

In the before, Dragons arrived out of nowhere and took over Loom and subjugated the Fenthri population to their rules, and their guidelines. In the process, they destroyed the (5) Guilds of Loom who once worked hand in hand with each other. Those being Alchemists, Rivets, Revolvers, Harvesters, and Ravens. Ari still carries memories of the time before Dragons. She lost someone she loved, and she was also a brilliant engineer who continues to tinker with gadgets, and other inventions. Her hatred for Dragons is what drives her into taking on some missions that others would walk away from. It also made her the White Wraith.

This is a story that also features three separate races: Fenthri, Dragons, and Chimera. Chimera's like Ari are the most interesting to me. They are made by Alchemists and have Dragon organs and blood in them which make them strong as Dragons. Ari is perhaps the most dangerous of the Chimera, therefore making her Loom's most infamous criminal. In this world, ALL Fenthri are marked on their faces to indicate which Guild they belong to. If you are not marked, you won't live long enough if you are caught by a Dragon. 

This isn't a romance novel per se. Even though two characters slowly move in the direction, and another two appear to be headed that way, it doesn't take over the storyline. Ari is definitely my favorite character. She's not your typical heroine. Her motives are clear, and in order to be successful, she has to do things that may not be in the best interests of those around her. This is a story that is Epic Fantasy with a Steampunk infusion which I believe all readers will enjoy.  

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