10 Jan 2022

Audio Review: CHOSEN CHAMPION by Elise Kova


Author: Elise Kova
Series: Vortex Chronicles #2
Source: Audio from Audible
Publisher: Silver Wing Press
Publication Date: May 1, 2019
Overall Rating:
Diversity Rating:

A princess on the run, with enemies on all sides...

Vi Solaris is on the eve of getting everything she’s ever wanted—her family, her home, her throne—and to save the world she’s going to have to give it all up.

The Empire sees her as their Crown Princess, returning at long last. But Vi only sees visions of fate guiding her to the world’s gruesome end. Across the sea is a man who holds the keys to deciphering her premonitions and thwarting the ancient evil ravaging their world. But to get to him, Vi will have to contend with enemies of the crown, romance she didn’t expect, sorcerer pirates, and a betrayal she never saw coming.

She will learn the hard way that some evils never die... They only bide their time...

Return to Solaris in the second book of Air Awakens: Vortex Chronicles, a young adult epic fantasy filled with even more magic, adventure, and romance. Get ready for twists you never saw coming that will keep you up all night reading!
Amazon | Chapters | TBD
I think this one was an okay book - mostly because the pacing felt a little off overall. The beginning was fairly slowly paced to set up the rest of the book - and the rest of the series. Because of that, it almost felt like the entire first book didn't really matter. It also feels like, while a spin-off, it's trying too hard to be nostalgic for a series that really only ended a year before these books came out.

I still really like the characters and the way that they interact. However, I would like for them to spend more time together, more time interacting, and more time understanding everyone's motives and conflicts. While we get a bit of this with Vi, it doesn't feel as though the rest of the characters are as fully fleshed out.

Even though these are supposed to be able to be standalones and an entry point into the Air Awakens universe, it feels as though these books fall into the trap of "having" to live up to the Air Awakens series and that means that things aren't able to "scale up" the way they should because they are living in the shadow of a completed story. It feels unbalanced and at times very empty, as there's not even a lot of character introspection or interpersonal relationships to work off of.

I'd anticipated the sea-faring and meeting of Taavin to occupy more of the story, for Vi reuniting with her mother and brother to really establish and elaborate upon their bonds, yet only the final seven chapters had anything to do with the journey from the Solaris Empire/the Dark Isle to Meru and literally the last 3 pages have them miraculously meet when Vi washes on shore and there he is.

TLDR: I wanted this to be more than it was, but it falls into some traps of second books and even longer fantasy series. I'll be continuing with the story to see where it goes but I am feeling a bit disappointed overall.

Have you read this book? Are you going to pick this up?

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