The Siren’s Realm by Megan O’Russell

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The Tethering

The Tethering (The Tethering #1)
Megan O’Russell
Published: 17th October, 2014
Silence in the Library Publishing
Genre: Fantasy
Age: Young Adult
From: Xpresso Book Tours

Summary:

All sixteen-year-old Jacob Evans wants is to win the heart of Emilia Gray, but with order in the magical world crumbling, war threatening, and Emilia’s boyfriend living across the hall, he may never have the chance.

Jacob Evans loses everything he has ever known and is tossed into a world of magic. The Dragons, a group of rebel wizards, are threatening to expose the existence of magic to humans. Jacob is determined to find a way to fit into Emilia’s family, but as his powers grow, so does the danger. With the death toll mounting, Jacob is accused of acts of rebel terrorism and must fight to stay in a world he’s only just beginning to discover.

When Emilia’s life is threatened, Jacob must risk everything to save her. Does he have the power to rescue her in time? And what could their survival cost?

What I liked: Although this book clocking in at just under a two hour read for me, the fast pace of this book ended up being mostly enjoyable. Jacob, our main character, is a kid who’s grown up in poverty since his father is barely ever home and doesn’t leave Jacob a lot of money to use when he leaves. Emilia is his best friend, someone who he met at a young age and who he ended up becoming best friends with later. Jacob’s story is a story of having to learn to endure and to change what he thought he knew, and to accept that he was never who he thought he was. Not only that, but as he begins to step into the world he never truly thought existed, he’s accused of terrorism by other wizards since Magickind is on the brink of civil war. It was an interesting twist, and one that made the story more interesting to read as we learn a little more about the world Jacob is going to live in.

What I didn’t like: There were a lot of pieces in this story that felt reminiscent of another fantasy book series that many are familiar with, and at times that was a little jarring to me, but at the same time this story was also its own, just not in enough ways for me to completely separate the two. I don’t feel like the magic and the secret world was really explored in this book either. I get that there was a lot put into this story, but I also felt like slowing it down and letting us learn about the world little by little as well would have been great too.

Overall Review: A fast paced, yet short read, The Tethering is an interesting start to a new series. Despite its similarities to another series I’m familiar with, it had a great premise and what seems to be an interesting story to tell readers as the series continues. With a couple of surprises in the story it made for a fun story and I look forward to reading the second book in the series!

Recommend?: While not everyone may like it, if you like fantasy (especially more towards urban fantasy) this would be a good book for you to pick up and check out!

Goodreads: 4.4/5 Amazon: 5/5 Barnes&Noble: 5/5 BookDepository: -/5

US Paperback | UK Paperback | Kobo | iBooks

My Rating: 3.6/5

Rated Materials:
Cover: 3.9
Idea: 3.3
Story: 3.5
Characters: 3.7

The Siren's Realm

The Siren’s Realm (The Tethering #2)
Megan O’Russell
Published: 29th April, 2015
Library Publishing
Genre: Fantasy
Age: Young Adult
From: Xpresso Book Tours

Summary:

Jacob loves Emilia Gray, but things aren’t always that simple in the world of Magickind…

The war has begun.

The Dragons are gaining power, and the Gray Clan stands alone. Desperate to find a way to stop the Pendragon, Emilia is forced to seek answers from someone who hasn’t been seen in seventeen years…her mother. Embarking on a magical journey filled with witches, wizards, centaurs and a dangerous and powerful Siren, Jacob and Emilia must take a leap of faith to a land neither could have ever imagined…and hope they can then find their way home.

What I liked: Compared to The Tethering, The Siren’s Realm was more fleshed out in terms of how things in book one affected and followed the characters in book two. We also see how the characters and decisions affect what’s happening in the story in what felt like a way that we didn’t get in the first book. The choices that Jacob and Emilia make in this book will undoubtedly have consequences in the future that the author is already planning, especially what they had to do to get to the siren’s realm. The characters were also fleshed out a little more in this story, which made them more relatable and easier for me to cheer on despite thei circumstances they were up against. In this book, Jacob shows less development than he did in the first book, but the things that he does in the book also reenforce the ideas and what we think about Jacob as a character so far aside from what he went through at the hands of the Dragons. Emilia on the other hand had plenty of recovering to do after everything that ended up being thrown at her, and the way that was handled was done well. Aside from that, the platonic state of the relationship between Jacob and Emilia also showed a nice play in the story and also reenforced how Jacob is and it made me like his character even more.

What I didn’t like: I felt like this story was too short to really convey the plot that it was trying to, similar to the story of the first book. It felt like the story could have been elongated to try and make it more interesting and have more development for the world. Yet we get a little more taste in magic than in the first one, but it wasn’t what I was expecting and I was hoping for something a little more different.

Overall Review: This story was a fun, and entertaining read. Compared to the first book, The Siren’s Realm was the better read and much more interesting overall. The series seems to get a little more interesting in each book, and that makes me wonder what the author has up her sleeve for the third book. I look forward to seeing what that one will be like in the future.

Recommend?: If you enjoyed The Tethering, then I suggest you carry on because The Siren’s Realm was a good follow up to what happens to the characters.

Goodreads: 4.8/5 Amazon: 5/5 Barnes&Noble: -/5

UK Paperback | Kobo | iBooks

My Rating: 3.7/5

Rated Materials:
Cover: 3.8
Idea: 3.6
Story: 3.7
Characters: 3.7

Check out the rest of the tour here!

Megan O'Russell

About the Author

Megan O’Russell is thrilled to have published her premier novel The Tethering with Silence in the Library Publishing. Originally from New York, Megan is a professional actress who spends her time traveling the country for different shows. When not on stage or writing, Megan spends time with her beloved ukulele and her wonderful husband. To follow Megan’s writing adventures, you can visit her website at meganorussell.com.

Links:

Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter

GIVEAWAY*!

  • Signed copy of both The Tethering and The Siren’s Realm by Megan O’Russell (INTERNATIONAL)
  • Signed copy of Elected by Rori Shay (INTERNATIONAL)
  • Signed copy of Vision of Shadows by Vincent Morrone (INTERNATIONAL)

Winner will be drawn 11th June, 2015

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Books and Ashes is not responsible for any lost, damaged, or unreceived materials that you may win. Books and Ashes does not handle the materials, or have any input on who receives a prize. In the case of a Books and Ashes Sponsored Giveaway Random.org will choose the winner. US and international followers eligible where applicable.

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2 responses to “The Siren’s Realm by Megan O’Russell

  1. Great review, hun! I wish I could finish a book in under 2 hours >.< I'm a slow poke lol. This sounds like a fun series though I often find the second book in series now is where a lot of the character dev and world building happens so that it seems more fleshed out, but the plot itself doesn't always progress as much as the other books in turn. Glad you liked it! 🙂

    Like

    • Thanks Giselle! I’ve learned how to read quickly over the years because of school and other obligations so that way I can finish my books. I’m not finding that a whole lot, but it seems to be something that’s happening. Truthfully I like my world building done as much as possible to help introduce me to the world in the first book and everything to be built off of that in the following books. Its something I’ve become used to in fantasy so its something I really enjoy. And thanks! 🙂

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