Storm from the East

Description

Part war drama, part romance, Storm from the East is the second installment in Joanna Hathaway’s epic Glass Alliance series

War has begun, and the days of Athan’s and Aurelia’s secret, summer romance feel a world away.

Led by Athan’s father, the revolutionary Safire have launched a secret assault upon the last royal kingdom in the South, hoping to depose the king and seize a powerful foothold on the continent. Athan proves a star pilot among their ranks, struggling to justify the violence his family has unleashed as he fights his way to the capital—where, unbeknownst to him, Aurelia has lived since the war’s onset. Determined to save the kingdom Athan has been ordered to destroy, she partners with a local journalist to inflame anti-Safire sentiment, all while learning this conflict might be far darker and more complex than she ever imagined.

When the two reunite at last, Athan longing to shake the nightmare of combat and Aurelia reeling from the discovery of a long-buried family truth come to light, they’ll find the shadow of war stretches well beyond the battlefield. Each of them longs to rekindle the love they once shared . . . but each has a secret they’re desperate to hide.

EXCERPT

1

AURELIA ISENDARE

Etania

Our palace is sharp with autumn’s chill. The boilers in the cellar hiss to life, radiators ticking in every parlour corner, but creeping cold still permeates the arching halls of home. A wintry breath snakes between double doors, jeweled chandeliers, marble alcoves. The high ceilings and endless rooms swallow warmth, hearth fires burning brightly in defiance.

My mother is as defiant as the flames. She sits at her mahogany desk, dressed in a wool coat trimmed with ermine, and I stand at her left shoulder, seeing every twitch of breath in the slender expanse of her throat. It’s the only thing that belies her calm. Beyond the large windows, the faithful mountains rise, their peaks gone brown, spindly leaves clinging in scarlet patches.

Lord Jerig places a white paper on the desk. “Your Majesty. Let justice be dealt.”

He waits obediently before us, as do the other men of her Royal Council, and even her brother, my uncle Tanek. A little herd of men hungry for retribution. From where I am, the decree is easy to read. A simple paper, with elegant script.

Ink words holding death.

“For betraying Etania, the kingdom of our true hearts, and aiding in the coup against Her Majesty, forsaking the honourable legacy of His Late Majesty Boreas Isendare—who, in good faith, crowned Her Majesty to rule until our Prince is of age—the following shall forfeit their life in payment for their shameful crime.”

It’s only been two months since that awful night when these men attacked my birthday masquerade, a fragment of our own people revolting against us and claiming my mother murdered my father for the Etanian throne. It’s still fresh, still frightening inside, and sometimes I catch myself counting the steps to each door or window in a room, scouring for an escape—anything to get away from the clatter of bullets, the plumes of smoke rising into the night sky. Something deep within me has been left small and fearful. I want this over. I want this hateful thing ended forever. And yet, I can’t stop reading the names on the paper.

MY REVIEW

The publisher and Netgalley provided me with a copy of this ARC in exchange for an honest review. I fell in love with this war-torn world in Dark of the West. It’s filled with vigilantes, saviors, refugees and revolutionaries. Two young lovers are thrown into the chaos and burden of the violence surrounding them, confronting impossible choices and damning truths.

Athan and Aurelia forged a bond despite their distrust and disguises. Their love is a defiant stand against the families and forces that have shaped them. Athan will finally earn the black marks on the wings of his fighter plane – a pilot on the front lines. Aurelia will finally step out of the shadows and gather the courage to make her enemies face truths they seek to deny. As they chase their separate destinies, their actions thrust them further apart. The words between them will become ominous and inadequate.

This series, though set in a fictional world, is one of the truest depictions of war’s inevitable destruction and the consequences of greed.

5 Stars.

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