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Fantasy Romance Review: A Promise of Fire by Amanda Bouchet

A Promise of Fire by Amanda Bouchet (Kingmaker Chronicles #1)

Egalley thanks to Sourcebooks Casablanca

Synopsis from Goodreads
Catalia "Cat" Fisa is a powerful clairvoyant known as the Kingmaker. This smart-mouthed soothsayer has no interest in her powers and would much rather fly under the radar, far from the clutches of her homicidal mother. But when an ambitious warlord captures her, she may not have a choice…

Griffin is intent on bringing peace to his newly conquered realm in the magic-deprived south. When he discovers Cat is the Kingmaker, he abducts her. But Cat will do everything in her power to avoid her dangerous destiny and battle her captor at every turn. Although up for the battle, Griffin would prefer for Cat to help his people willingly, and he's ready to do whatever it takes to coax her…even if that means falling in love with her.

Audio US | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | The Book Depository


* * *
 Alright, A Promise of Fire had an awesome start! Cat's snark, snappy comebacks, amazing fighting skills and eye-rolling reminded me of Celaena Sardothien, and I am a big fan of that girl.

"I always get to know people before I kill them. It's much more satisfying that way."

Griffin is a newly minted de-facto ruler of Sinta, and he has been looking for a Kingmaker to help him to stay in power for awhile. When he finds Catalia, he easily sees that she is a real deal, so she is roped with a magical tether and whisked away to Sinta.

Of course, Cat is furious, as she has her own reasons to stay hidden, what with psycho mother whose army will kill anyone in their way to get to Cat, and with seriously disturbed rest of the family which just plainly wants her head on the platter. So, Cat is actively trying to escape until the first attack, and by then it's too late, so she has to join forces with Beta Sinta (Griffin) and his three warriors (who by the way are goofy, adorable and super flirty).

So far so good.

The world is pseudo-Greek, and there are so many underlying currents and hidden details, that the reader feels like we are just skimming the surface, which feels pretty lush. Even the modern thinking and language did not turn me off, it was in the spirit of this book.

The fights are rich and graphic, as Cat's talents and her upbringing are somewhat violent, but it's fun as well in Kate Daniels sort of way. Overall, 2/3 of this book rocked.

So, why am I giving it a lower rating? Griffin. He is a bore. A typical alpha male, dark, brooding and possessive. *yawn* Cat is a firecracker and he can't keep up with her. She had more chemistry and banter going with his closest warriors that with him. With Griffin, it's mostly sex, which takes majority of the last third of the book and is full of gems like "enormous erection". *eye-roll* I'm sorry but usually you either keep sex short and sweet with the fantasy romance or it turns into an erotic fantasy romance, and then this is what the author is really good at writing and concentrates on.

Amanda Bouchet is fantastic at action sequences and snappy dialogue, and I loved her for it, which is why the intimate scenes felt underwhelming and overly long. It's still and exceptional book, and I sure as hell will be continuing with the series! Grab it, recommended.

* * *
В общем, ребятушки, Обещание Огня началось здорово. Кат - полна сарказма, смекалки и шикарных боевых навыков, и напоминает мне Селаэну Сардотьен, характера которой я большой фанат.

"Я всегда знакомлюсь с людьми перед тем как их убить. Так я получаю гораздо больше удовольствия."
Гриффин - де-факто новый правитель Синты, и он ищет кингмэйкера, чтобы тот помог ему удержать трон в семье. Найдя Каталию, он наблюдаете за ней несколько недель пока не убеждается, что у неё настоящий талант. Бедняга Кат затем повязана волшебной верёвкой и похищена в Синту.

У Кат свои причины прятаться - от ненормальной мамули, которая отправляет по её следам армию и до кровожадной семейки, которая просто хочет её убить, так что она изо всех сил пытается сбежать на пути в Синту. Однако её попытки становятся бесползными после первой атаки. Теперь ей придётся объединить силы с Гриффином и его воинами (которые кстати, очаровательны, смешны и чертовски флиртуют с ней), чтобы выжить.

Сам мир -  псевдо-греческий со множеством скрытых деталей и ньюансов под поверхностью, что делает его богатым и интригующим для читателя. Даже современный язык и образ мышления не раздражает, так как соответствуют духу книги. Бои вообще здесь шикарные - кровавые и зрелищные а-ля Кейт Дэниэлс.

Так почему же я занизила оценку? вы могли бы спросить.

Гриффин - ну очень скучный персонаж и полон клише. Альфа мужик, постоянно мрачный, а также ревнивый. Кат - взрывная и яркая как фейерверк, и Гриффин на её фоне смотрится очень серо. Но хуже всего то, что после двух третей книги, которые динамичны и полны экшна, почти вся последняя часть посвящена сексу между главными героями, и мягко говоря, не очень хорошо написанному.

В моём опыте, секс в фэнтези достаточно короток и эмоционально насыщен. Если мы переходим в долгие, графические описания, это переходит в жанр эротического фэнтези, и тогда уже автор сосредоточивается именно на этом аспекте. Очерь редко автор может писать сильные сцены и экшн и жаркие постельные сцены, и Аманда Буше - не один из таких авторов. Экшн и диалоги у неё отличные. Всё остальное, по моему мнению, книгу ослабило.

Однако, отличное начало серии, и я его вам рекомендую. Сама точно буду читать дальше.

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