The Kingmaker Chronicles #2
by Amanda Bouchet
Published on January 3, 2017 by Sourcebooks Casablanca
Genres: Adult, Fantasy, Romance
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SHE'S DESTINED TO DESTROY THE WORLD...
"Cat" Catalia Fisa has been running from her destiny since she could crawl. But now, her newfound loved ones are caught between the shadow of Cat's tortured past and the threat of her world-shattering future. So what's a girl to do when she knows it's her fate to be the harbinger of doom? Everything in her power.
BUT NOT IF SHE CAN HELP IT
Griffin knows Cat is destined to change the world-for the better. As the realms are descending into all-out war, Cat and Griffin must embrace their fate together. Gods willing, they will emerge side-by-side in the heart of their future kingdom...or not at all.
This book was provided by the publisher (via NetGalley) for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Cat’s back in the second installment of the Kingmaker Chronicles and the stakes are higher than ever. A Promise of Fire saw her fighting against her past and falling for the alpha male Griffin who kidnapped her (that’s a whole other conversation). But in order for them to have a peaceful future and achieve Griffin’s vision of a united Thalyria, they must protect their own borders and take out the neighboring royals.
Just another day for Beta Team.
For nearly half of Breath of Fire, I held little interest in the story. It ranged between Griffin freaking out and going all possessive alpha (which I really disliked in the last book) while Cat apologizes and believes herself worthless in comparison, to sex scene, back to relationship struggles, sex, etc. The romance would’ve had more heat if it weren’t for the fact that I think they both need some serious counseling as a couple. Didn’t like it in book 1, still not a fan in this one.
Once the story moved past the back-and-forth, things picked up. While A Promise of Fire brought in the Greek myth laden throughout this world, Breath of Fire lived it. Bouchet brought all the magical creatures out to play, from the (unnamed) Chimaera (though based on the description that’s what I think it was), the Hydra, and even Cerberus makes his return.
Also, I want Cerberus as a pet.
Breath of Fire doesn’t quite strike the same balance of romance and fantasy as the previous installment, starting heavy on the former and shifting in the extreme to the latter. Bouchet sends us into the midst of myths and legends as Cat faces one creature after the next with the gods’ blessings. For the second half of the book, there’s rarely a moment spent where she’s not in danger. But with all that action, the other characters get to shine more.
One comment I had regarding the last book was the fact that I wanted more from the side characters instead of Griffin (yeah, you get it, I don’t like him). Each of the Beta Team members had a stronger role in this book: Kato and Cat working together in the icy labyrinth, Flynn and Jocasta finally starting to share their feelings for each other (it needed to happen sooner or later), Carver’s back story coming out, etc. Even the circus family returned. With all the setting details this time around, I think the story needed to bring out the characters to balance it out.
By the end of Breath of Fire I was firmly hooked and back into the series, eagerly awaiting book #3. The ending reveal wasn’t as hard-hitting as I had hoped but, then again, I felt it a predictable move based on the couple. These books are good but certainly not completely unique when it comes to the romance aspect of the plot. As for the fantasy and adventure, you’ll definitely want to grab a copy as soon as you can. Perfect for fans of Greek mythology and fated destiny.