One book that really fits into this theme is Elise Kova's THE ALCHEMISTS OF LOOM. Elise wrote a YA Fantasy series, AIR AWAKENS, and while that started as YA it definitely ventured into the Adult realm near the end. However, the Loom Saga is decidedly Adult, so I thought I would feature it today as Kova is an author that has written both YA and Adult Fantasy! See my thoughts below + enter to win one of three signed Loom bookmarks!
Breakdown for the month...
January's Theme: YA to Adult Crossover
January 6: 2016 Release Roundup
January 20: YA to Adult SFF Recommendations
January 27: Review of THE ALCHEMISTS OF LOOM by Elise Kova
THE ALCHEMISTS OF LOOM
Series: Loom Saga #1
Source: ARC via Publisher
Publisher: Keymaster Press
Publication Date: January 10, 2017
Rating: 4.5/5 stars
Her vengeance. His vision.
Ari lost everything she once loved when the Five Guilds’ resistance fell to the Dragon King. Now, she uses her unparalleled gift for clockwork machinery in tandem with notoriously unscrupulous morals to contribute to a thriving underground organ market. There isn’t a place on Loom that is secure from the engineer turned thief, and her magical talents are sold to the highest bidder as long as the job defies their Dragon oppressors.
Cvareh would do anything to see his sister usurp the Dragon King and sit on the throne. His family’s house has endured the shame of being the lowest rung in the Dragons’ society for far too long. The Alchemist Guild, down on Loom, may just hold the key to putting his kin in power, if Cvareh can get to them before the Dragon King’s assassins.
When Ari stumbles upon a wounded Cvareh, she sees an opportunity to slaughter an enemy and make a profit off his corpse. But the Dragon sees an opportunity to navigate Loom with the best person to get him where he wants to go.
He offers her the one thing Ari can’t refuse: A wish of her greatest desire, if she brings him to the Alchemists of Loom.
Anytime you read a book by an author you love, you have that momentary jolt of panic thinking "Am I going to like this? What happens if I don't?!" and that's how I felt going into THE ALCHEMISTS OF LOOM. I loved the AIR AWAKENS Series by Elise Kova and had those butterflies upon starting Loom, but I shouldn't have. THE ALCHEMISTS OF LOOM has a great magic system, complex characters, and lots of action to keep you on your toes. If you're a fan of MISTBORN by Brandon Sanderson, you will enjoy THE ALCHEMISTS OF LOOM.
I liked that this one started off really fast paced: We met all of our POV characters pretty much right away. Switching POVs allowed us to move the story along and understand the world from the perspective of every class of person that would have a say in the world. I think it was a really wise idea to show the perspective of everyone because it allowed us to understand where the Dragons are coming from and where the humans are coming from in terms of how they view the way the world works. I especially liked Arianna's conversations with Cvareh about how the Guilds were so much stronger without Dragon influence because now they are throttled and not allowed to grow as much as they did when the Dragons were still on Nova.
The world building was really intriguing. I liked the idea of different territories for different Guilds and how to travel between them. I also liked seeing a bit of some of the different Guilds to understand how each Guild lived differently and why. The descriptions were wonderful because I felt like I was walking around in this world and experiencing everything our characters did. I would love to be able to transport myself into this world just to see the sights. Everything was really logical and made sense, especially the heavy magic coming from the Dragon blood. I think it is a really interesting and cool system with much more yet to be discovered about it.
I really liked all the characters, but ESPECIALLY Leona. Leona was legit my fave which is awkward since she is a Dragon and technically the enemy of the main characters. But girlfriend knew what she wanted and did whatever she had to in order to get it and I am so here for that. I thought all the characters we met were really well rounded (if not, you know, a little off their rocker) and I am really excited to see where things go from here for all of them. Arianna is a mystery wrapped in a riddle wrapped in a bitch (thanks OTH) but she is still a great character. I liked seeing her bring down her walls for Florence and [spoiler]that at the end she started to do the same for Cvareh[/spoiler] because it made her human. I am excited to see what else she can do in the future.
The one thing I was a little meh about was the ending. I felt like the main conflict of this one ended a tad too early and the final chapters, while interesting and setting up the next novel, left much to be desired. I am excited to see where the next novel takes us and to see how Arianna grows as an individual (and how her relationship with Cvareh adapts and changes). I also think we were left with a few too many questions at the end. We could infer a lot from the conversations at the end and some of what transpired, but it was never outright said which means that my ideas could be completely wrong, altering my perspective of certain characters and situations. And while it is good to have questions about the future ([spoiler]i.e. What dragon will Arianna ask Cvareh to kill for betraying them?[/spoiler]), I shouldn't have just as many questions about our main character at this point. I like that she is mysterious and has a tragic past, but I needed a few more nuggets of information before this one ended to really satisfy my curiousity.
This is another fresh and fun Fantasy series that is sure to be a hit. I loved the world, the characters, and the magic system. I was meh on the ending, but I am very excited to continue reading! I think if you're a fan of Brandon Sanderson or Brent Weeks, you will enjoy the start of Elise Kova's newest series.