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Reading Time: 3 minutes -

Raven’s Ruin

The Keeper Origins #2


J.A. Andrews

The first book in The Keeper Origins, Dragon’s Reach, was one of my favorite books last year. It kept me up at night and it swept me away to a world far beyond my own dark chambers. When I recently learned of the imminent release of the second part in the series, I realized it was once more time to make irresponsible decisions about sleep.

Three very late nights, and an afternoon that turned dark way too fast, that’s how long it took – followed by an evening of despair (well, okay, mild annoyance) as I agonized over how I’d have to wait another year to read book three. It’s annoying, but I’ll wait. It’s worth it.

This is the good stuff.

This book put its claws in me and didn’t let go. After I finished, while reading another book, I kept wondering why the main character couldn’t hear the lies in the words spoken to her, and I had to remind myself they weren’t Sable. Yes, seriously.

Raven’s Ruin takes over where Dragon’s Reach ended, where Sable finds herself in a situation she’d never predicted, and in which she has no desire to be. She struggles at the sidelines as major events unfold, feeling weak and powerless, trying desperately to get back on her feet and find her own voice in the world.

Eventually, she does. Slowly, at first, but then with more courage and confidence. It’s predictable in the good way, where you can tell what’s going on and what’s coming, but instead of losing interest, you’re filled with anticipation and excitement at what the future holds.

And still, the story twists and turns, and nothing’s ever really certain.

Raven’s Ruin is not a fast-paced, action packed adventure, but its tense and thrilling all the same. There’s a realness to Sable and the characters around her. A solidity to the world. A joy in the magic explored.

What I’ll Whine About

More than once, I caught myself thinking that Vivaine made a lot of sense, and that Sable was a bit dense not to see it. I’m not sure whether that says more about me or about the book, though.

What I’ll Gush About

This is the kind of book, story, and writing that just oozes solid quality, from the cover, to the maps, to the tie in story that I still haven’t read but that I know is there. It’s epic fantasy the way I want it to be. There’s really no good point to put the book down and go to sleep (maybe that should come under whining?). Even in the quiet moments, the story is warm and comfortable enough that I’m reluctant to step away from it.

Fear. One thing that keeps coming back, over and over again, is the question “what are you afraid of?” It tells of how we all carry our own fears within us, and how everyone’s afraid of something. It shows that opening up to our fears is a way of conquering them.

I really enjoy this kind of commentary on what it means to be human. It’s not overbearing or preaching, but it’s present enough to be a factor in the story, and it enriches the reading experience.

Final Words

At well over 700 pages, this is a chonker of a book, but it’s worth every tired yawn the day after.

Find Raven’s Ruin in Goodreads.

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