Monday, March 13, 2017

The Wish Granter by C.J. Redwine

Title: The Wish Granter (Ravenspire #2)
Author: C.J. Redwine
Genre: Young Adult, High Fantasy
Source: Balzer + Bray via Edelweiss

An epic fantasy inspired by the Rumpelstiltskin fairy tale, about a bastard princess who must take on an evil fae to save her brother’s soul, from the New York Times bestselling author of The Shadow Queen.

The world has turned upside down for Thad and Ari Glavan, the bastard twins of SĂșndraille’s king. Their mother was murdered. The royal family died mysteriously. And now Thad sits on the throne of a kingdom whose streets are suddenly overrun with violence that he can’t stop.

Growing up ignored by the nobility, Ari never wanted to be a proper princess. And when Thad suddenly starts training Ari to take his place, she realizes that her brother’s ascension to the throne wasn’t fate. It was the work of a Wish Granter named Alistair Teague, who tricked Thad into wishing away both the safety of his people and his soul in exchange for the crown.

So Ari recruits the help of Thad’s enigmatic new weapons master, Sebastian Vaughn, to teach her how to fight Teague. With secret ties to Teague’s criminal empire, Sebastian might just hold the key to discovering Alistair’s weaknesses, saving Ari’s brother—and herself.

But Teague is ruthless and more than ready to destroy anyone who dares stand in his way—and now he has his sights set on the princess. And if Ari can’t outwit him, she’ll lose Sebastian, her brother...and her soul.
Review by Nara

The Wish Granter is a retelling of a fairy tale that isn't retold very often: Rumpelstiltskin. It's a companion novel to The Shadow Queen, and actually I feel like you definitely don't need to read the first book in this companion series to read The Wish Granter. They're pretty much completely separate apart from one very small cameo from some characters from book one.

Starting off with a negative: the romance line was a bit weak. Personally, I found it quite sappy at times. Sometimes, like in The Shadow Queen, a sappy romance is okay because you can see the progression of the romance building through friendship and you've seen the struggle the characters have gone through to get to the romance. Other times like in The Wish Granter, it goes very quickly from nothing to romance and it's a bit harder to accept the sappiness.

The story apart from the romance was pretty decent, with the main focus on how Ari and Thad are going to take down Alistair Teague. Teague was an interesting villain, and I actually liked seeing things from his point of view. You were able to get more backstory and a better idea of the motivations behind his evilness. Probably the only real complaint I have about the plot is that most of the problems were solved very easily by Ari (sometimes Sebastian) and even the ending was somewhat underwhelming.

Ari especially was a great character, and easy to empathise with. She isn't the typical princess, wanting to be treated like everyone else and having a major sweet tooth (the baking in this novel made me so hungry). Sebastian was also pretty well developed, but he did have the more typical "tragic past" backstory that you often see in high fantasy. I actually would've liked to have heard a bit more about this backstory, and I think the lack of this development made him a bit less empathetic than Ari.

Overall, The Wish Granter was quite a well written novel with an interesting take on a well known fairy tale. I've really enjoyed this companion series so far from C.J. Redwine, and I'm hoping to see much more from her.

Really liked it
Overall: 8/10
Plot: 4/5
Romance: 3.5/5
Writing: 4/5
World Building: 4/5
Characters: 4/5
Cover: 3/5