In today’s post, I am reposting my very short review of Book 1 – The Awakening and posting for the first time my review of Book 3 – The Choice. I read Book 2 – The Becoming, but I didn’t review it last year. I kept specifics out to avoid spoilers!
In the realm of Talamh, a teenage warrior named Keegan emerges from a lake holding a sword—representing both power and the terrifying responsibility to protect the Fey. In another realm known as Philadelphia, a young woman has just discovered she possesses a treasure of her own…
When Breen Kelly was a girl, her father would tell her stories of magical places. Now she’s an anxious twentysomething mired in student debt and working a job she hates. But one day she stumbles upon a shocking discovery: her mother has been hiding an investment account in her name. It has been funded by her long-lost father—and it’s worth nearly four million dollars.
This newfound fortune would be life-changing for anyone. But little does Breen know that when she uses some of the money to journey to Ireland, it will unlock mysteries she couldn’t have imagined. Here, she will begin to understand why she kept seeing that silver-haired, elusive man, why she imagined his voice in her head saying Come home, Breen Siobhan. It’s time you came home. Why she dreamed of dragons. And where her true destiny lies—through a portal in Galway that takes her to a land of faeries and mermaids, to a man named Keegan, and to the courage in her own heart that will guide her through a powerful, dangerous destiny…
The Awakening by Nora Roberts is the start of an exciting and whimsical fantasy by Nora Roberts. Set in a world connected to our own, I was swept away by the land of fae in this novel. The world-building takes on a mystical quality that is totally suited for the connection to Ireland. The characters are well-developed and relatable despite the magical abilities, and the magic system is traditional so far. It begins pretty slow, with too many small details bogging my reading pace down. Still, it quickly picks up speed once the main character gets to Ireland and starts making life-altering discoveries. And did I mention that there are dragons!?!? Yes, dragons! Overall, I found this an entertaining start to what could be an outstanding trilogy.
The conclusion of the epic trilogy from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Awakening and The Becoming.
Talamh is a land of green hills, high mountains, deep forests, and seas, where magicks thrive. But portals allow for passage in and out—and ultimately, each must choose their place, and choose between good and evil, war and peace, life and death…
Breen Siobhan Kelly grew up in the world of Man and was once unaware of her true nature. Now she is in Talamh, trying to heal after a terrible battle and heartbreaking losses. Her grandfather, the dark god Odran, has been defeated in his attempt to rule over Talamh, and over Breen—for now.
With the enemy cast out and the portal sealed, this is a time to rest and to prepare. Breen spreads her wings and realizes a power she’s never experienced before. It’s also a time for celebrations—of her first Christmas in both Talamh and Ireland, of solstice and weddings and births—and daring to find joy again in the wake of sorrow. She rededicates herself to writing her stories, and when his duties as taoiseach permit, she is together with Keegan, who has trained her as a warrior and whom she has grown to love.
It’s Keegan who’s at her side when the enemy’s witches, traitorous and power-mad, appear to her in her sleep, practicing black magick, sacrificing the innocent, and plotting a brutal destruction for Breen. And soon, united with him and with all of Talamh, she will seek out those in desperate need of rescue, and confront the darkness with every weapon she has: her sword, her magicks—and her courage…
What’s it about (in a nutshell):
The Choice by Nora Roberts is the conclusion to The Dragon Heart Legacy trilogy that began with The Awakening in 2020 and continued with The Becoming in 2021. It’s the story of Breen Siobhan Kelly, who grew up in the human realm but discovered she is part human, part fae, and part demi-god at the beginning of the trilogy. She is also a blogger and a writer of children’s books and is working on an adult story. Going back and forth between the human and fae realms, Breen learns all about her family, blood, and mysterious past.
Initial Expectations (before beginning the book):
I’m very excited to read this book. I’ve been waiting for it anxiously since I finished book two last year.
Actual Reading Experience:
I am going to be unusually frank. I was disappointed by my reading experience with this installment. I enjoyed the first two books. I gave them each four stars or close. There’s magic and all sorts of creatures like trolls, mermaids, werewolves, elves, fairies, and witches. And best of all, there are dragons – dragons that only good can ride- beautiful, glorious dragons. And you all know how I love dragons. It’s got everything I love, and when you combine that with my history of reading and loving Nora Robert’s fantasy stories, this should have been a love fest of a review.
Unfortunately, it’s not. My reading experience was a slog-fest. The writing bordered on over-writing, spending too much time and detail on the making of meals and just everyday activities that had already been established in the first two books. I’ve only noticed this before in one other book I read by the author, so it was an unexpected and unwelcome surprise. Even the romance between Breen and Keegan was pushed so far into the background that it was practically nonexistent.
I was expecting action and adventure, considering how the second book ended. The big bad had yet to be defeated, and since he is a god, the final battle should have been epic and long – full of successes and failures. But I felt that it was pretty short and easy when it finally came.
The last fantasy trilogy I read by Roberts, Chronicles of the One (2017-2019), I found to be a fantastic fantasy story full of the same plethora of creatures but with a good struggle and story. It was a definite elevation for me in Roberts stories of this genre. So, my expectation was for that to continue.
But it didn’t, and I felt a bit let down. Now, my opinion is not the prevailing one – not at all. Ninety-one percent of the people rated their reading experience on Goodreads either a 4 or 5 (mostly a 5). But for me, it just wasn’t what I had grown to expect, and I was disappointed.
Read if you like:
- Romantic Fantasy
- Diverse magical/supernatural creatures