My Review – ★★★★
This novel is a beautiful blend of fantasy and reality where the author has created a breathtaking alternate universe called Agalrae that draws you in with its magical creatures and the main character’s mysterious past. The story is fast-paced, the characters are developed just enough to keep you curious, and the creatures that inhabit Agalrae will make you wish you had an imagination half as cool as Sydney’s! You get your fill of magic, adventure, love, loss, and the healing that takes place in between so these characters are easy to relate to.
Title – Ariel: The First Guardian (Guardians of Agalrae Book 2)
Author – Sydney Scrogham
Length – 262 pages
Pub. Date – May 26, 2016
Genre – Romance/Paranormal, Fantasy
Summary – Abuse survivor Ariel Harte doesn’t need anyone. Ever. But her companion animal is infected with a dark, magical force. Only an ancient purification ritual, the mind link, performed with another human can cure this infection. Ariel must ask her ex-boyfriend, Ryan Tracey, for help. But she’s racing time. She’s infected, too. All the walls will have to come down so Ariel can heal or she will lose herself to the darkness forever. Ariel: The First Guardian is a story of true love that wins over time, the power of second chances, and redemption from abuse. This is a prequel to Chase in the Guardians of Agalrae series but can be enjoyed as a standalone novel.
My Review – ★★★★ Con’t.
Some of the world felt slightly underdeveloped, but it’s possible that that was just because I started this book before I read “Chase” (which is technically the first in the series) and didn’t have any background on Agalrae. It is written in first person, Ariel’s perspective specifically and I was not very comfortable with the POV because she takes it a step further as if the character is speaking both directly to the reader and back into regular first person narrative off and on. That made it difficult for me to keep up with sometimes, but not enough to steer me away from the book because I thought it was an interesting perspective that I have not experienced before. This book was a unique experience for me, I’ve never really stepped into the paranormal romance (I think this is more of a fantasy novel to be honest) direction but I did really enjoy it! The author is so creative, and you get to build your own image of this world in your mind as you are reading which is one of my favorite reading experiences.
I’m not going to lie, my FAVORITE parts about this book were the creatures called “Alicorns.” They’re very much like unicorns, but colorful, winged, and able to communicate/talk with their guardians. I am a horse lover, so I may be partial to these books because of this, but I adored the critters once I got used to them! Sydney talks more about her inspiration behind them (think My Little Pony from the 80’s and 90’s) in the interview we did earlier this week where you can also find a synopsis from the next book in this series as well as the exclusive cover reveal! You’ll find more info about the author below, as well as the link to enter our February giveaway (US entrants only) to win a signed copy of BOTH of Sydney’s books!
A complimentary copy of this book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.
SYDNEY SCROGHAM loves creating happy endings. She started writing when she was 12. Her first book, Chase, was published by Koehler Books in August 2015. When she’s not writing, she’s at the barn with her horse Snowdy or catching up on reruns of the best TV show ever – Castle. She is a new resident to the Indianapolis, Indiana area. To learn more, visit her website at sswriter.com and don’t forget to check out her other media outlets below:
Click on the link below to be entered to win signed copies of BOTH Sydney Scrogham’s books (“Ariel: The First Guardian” & “Chase”) and make sure to check out our Bookstagram where we are hosting an IG exclusive second GA for $15 to Book Depository in celebration of reaching 1,000 followers!
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