Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Review & Blitz: Enlightenment by Liz Keel

Title: Enlightenment
Author: Liz Keel
Genre/Age: Fantasy/YA
Series: The Driel Trilogy (Book One)
Publisher: Champagne Books
Format: ebook via Goddess Fish Promotions
Rating: ✺✺✺
LinksGoodreads
SynopsisAfter losing everything, all seventeen-year-old Thea wanted was to be a normal teenager. Instead, she was attacked by a mysterious creature she thought only existed in fairy tales. Now thrown into the unknown realm of Faey, Thea is forced to determine the difference between reality and fantasy, in a world ruled by a dark elite and a society wracked by intolerance and prejudice. 

With the support of her new friends and a mysterious dark haired, blue-eyed guardian watching her every move, Thea will discover that when it comes to Faey, nothing is what it seems. Will her courage and desire to save this new world from darkness be enough? Or will Thea be the next victim to fall to the dark whispers of fate...

I awoke to an incessant bleeping and hushed whispers of ‘So young’ and ‘Such a shame’ and it was at that point I knew both of my parents were dead. Upon opening my eyes, a numb feeling began to take over as I realised I was in the local hospital with doctors giving me sympathetic looks and calling me sweetie whilst a nurse asked me who they should contact. That was an easy answer: no one. My parents had both been only children and their parents, my grandparents, had died when they were young.

There was no one else.

A couple of hours later Eli turned up with his family. Who’s Eli? Explaining him isn’t exactly one of the easiest things to do, as our relationship was complicated to say the least. Foremost, he’s my best friend, even with his over-protective nature, which I think stems from his need to look out for me, kind of like how I imagined a brother would for a sister. This would make sense as I’ve always been really close to his family, who seem to have been in my life for forever.

Yes, it was helped by the fact they lived in the same neighbourhood as us and that he went to the same high school as me; but more than that Eli seems to have been there at all my major life events. From losing my first tooth, to falling off my bike and then taking me for walks in the forest when I
needed the company, he’s always been there, someone I could rely on.

And again on this eventful day, he turned up knowing exactly what I needed: for someone not to say anything, but instead just to sit with me. He completely ignored his mother’s sobs as he only had eyes for me, walking quickly over to my bed and wrapping his arms around me. He pulled me onto his lap and once again I seemed to fit perfectly as he cocooned me, wrapping his arms around my back, his warmth spreading through me like a drug.

We were both seniors but he looked older, probably due to the growth spurt he had had over the summer. At six foot one he was a whole seven inches taller than me and had these tanned muscular arms that were freakishly strong, probably due to his part-time job as a labourer on the local farm. His dark blond hair spent most of the time being brushed back from his forehead, as it always fell into his eyes, but it always really suited him that way. One of the things I loved most about him were his eyes, which sparkled different shades of emerald green and I swear just looking at them let me know how he was feeling. On that day they had been a dull green.


I live in Surrey, England, a short walk from the beautiful Windsor Park, with my husband Richard
and our two gorgeous children Noah and Olivia. For me, writing is nothing short of an addiction
and I often find myself sneaking out to my writing shed for just a few minutes, which can often
turn into hours of pure, unadulterated bliss catching up with my characters and continuing their
story. In-between writing, I teach in a primary school where there’s never a dull moment! I will
also often be found Kindle in hand, reading a wide variety of genres but with YA fantasy and
paranormal romance at the forefront of my reading list. Although I’m currently writing the second
book in the Driel trilogy, other characters involving all things fantasy, paranormal and YA
romance are jockeying for position, wanting me to write their story next, so watch this space! It is
such a privilege to share my stories with you the reader. Thank you enough for taking the time to
find out more about me.

To find out more about Liz, visit her website: www.lizkeelauthor.com

Enlightenment will be $0.99 during the tour.

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**Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for honest review.** 

What would you do if you woke up one morning and learned that you were secretly royalty of a fantasy kingdom in another realm? Or that your best friend is really a highly trained guardian that has been hiding you from your enemies? What about the fact that you have magical powers beyond your wildest dreams?



That is precisely what happened to Thea. Leaving to catch the school bus one morning, she finds herself being attacked by grotesque creatures bent on killing her. Discovering magical powers that she didn't know she had, Thea fights to escape, along with the help of her friend, Eli.

But then Eli drops a significantly shocking secret into Thea's lap. She is actually an elf and the princess of a kingdom in another realm. Oh, and that they were leaving right away to return to said kingdom so she can finally reclaim her throne and become the queen.

Thea handles this revelation well, I think. Considering, in most instances...

 

After arriving in the new realm, Faey, Thea meets several more of her kingdom's protectors, including the head guard, Isaac. She feels immediately drawn to him, despite his icy demeanor. This eventually causes a dilemma for Thea, as she hasn't even sorted her possible feelings for Eli, at this point.

Her return to the realm does not go without its challenges. In order to become the queen, Thea must complete training that she hasn't even started yet, and only has four months to do it. She must learn fighting, weapons, history, and magic. And all the while, she has to avoid her evil nemesis who wants nothing but to see Thea fail.

I flew through this book. I didn't want to put it down. I think the author did a fabulous job of portraying Thea's experience of learning her true identity and falling into this new world. The pacing was fast but I had no problem keeping up. The romance was a bit 'quick' for me, but I've come to expect this in YA novels. The "I love you's" tend to come earlier when dealing with teenagers, so I tried to ignore the cringe I felt when I saw them. We eventually do get to see a couple of chapters from Isaac's POV.

The fight/action scenes are descriptive but don't drag on and on like is done in some fantasy novels. My only big critique is I wanted more description as far as the characters go. We get to "see" the surroundings and scenes much better than the actual people inside of them. I finished the book and couldn't even remember what color hair Thea had. But I knew exactly what the inside of the caves/tunnels looked like.

In closing... 
A strong beginning to what I expect will be a good fantasy trilogy. 4 suns!