Rating: 4/5 stars
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Fae
O how I’ve missed thee, Elise Kova!
There was an odd mix of trepidation, hope, hesitation and eagerness that enveloped me ever since I learned of Vortex Visions. For me, Air Awakens is a truly special series; the sorrows, the tragedies, the raw pain and the whirlwind of love and devastation that swept and defined the lives of Vhalla Yarl and Aldrik Solaris have left a permanent mark, and returning to the world they shaped could either lead to deep contentment or utter disappointment. I should have known better, though. I should have known not to question her.
A desperate princess.
A magical traveler.
And a watch that binds them together with the fate of a dying world.
Vi Solaris has never met her home. Due to a necessary political maneuver of her parents, she is forced to live as a warden of the Solaris Empire’s latest conquest; the North. As a result of her situation, she never fully belonged neither to the North nor to the South. With expectations heavy upon her, and her magic almost non-existent, with the Senate seeking political advantage and enemies at every corner, Vi’s position as the Crown Princess is precarious. When a deadly plague spreads, when dark gods appear and terrible secrets come to light, Vi finds an unexpected ally in the face of Taavin, a young man who shows her a world that she never imagined. Now equipped with mysterious powers and terrifying visions, Vi will fight, bleed, despair, try to save Solarin and the rest of her world, with the burden of its survival on her shoulders. For Fate is waiting for Vi Solaris.
Halleth. She whispered. Heal. And she did heal. She healed the void Air Awakens left when it ended, she healed the ache of goodbye and replaced the bittersweet taste of loss with skillet cake and cookies and the tang of magic.
Juth. She continued. Destruction. She wreaked havoc on tender hearts, shattered your fragile resolve and made pieces of you fall apart.
Narro Samasha. She uttered with intent. Awaken the Words. Make distant continents come alive, bestow feelings and blessings and curses on readers, invoke churning powers and stir deadly creatures from their sleep. Awaken long forgotten memories and blend them with the excitement of new adventures, new loves, new horizons. New pain.
❝ Isn’t that part of the enjoyment, though? Getting lost in something that seems as if it should be impossible?❞
Vortex Visions was both familiar and fresh; Elise Kova expanded the world of Air Awakens, rattled the very foundations of magic, added new elements, legends, sacred places and ungodly foes to a story of stardust and moss covered trees. Mixing politics, mystery and magic, infusing with breath a cast of diverse and multi-layered characters of intriguing backstories, she painted a gripping first instalment in green and brown shades. And since Vortex Visions is the introduction to the series, I am certain the next books will be mind-blowingly epic (and I withhold the 5th star until then).
Vi. Taavin. Andru. Ellene. Jayme. Jax. A web of friendship, secrets and loyalty interlaced with different types of love that fueled the plot. Everyone served a purpose, everyone was strategically placed in order to shape Vi’s character, and I cared about them all. Vi’s need to lead a normal life with but at the same time the desire to simply be herself defined her personality, and made her a heroine I wanted to follow. I loved her relationships, her nightly escapades, and all those times she thought of her family. Because once upon a time, her family was also my family. That’s a heavy legacy, but I am positive she’ll be able to bear it.
Vortex Visions was an encompassing journey, and I’m looking forward to the next part!
*ARC generously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review*