A Heart so Fierce and Broken

Book Review

Book: A Heart so Fierce and Broken
Author: Brigid Kemmerer
Year: 2020
Page Count: 450
Synopsis: Find the heir, win the crown.

The curse is finally broken, but Prince Rhen of Emberfall faces darker troubles still. Rumors circulate that he is not the true heir and that forbidden magic has been unleashed in Emberfall. Although Rhen has Harper by his side, his guardsman Grey is missing, leaving more questions than answers.

Win the crown, save the kingdom.

Rumored to be the heir, Grey has been on the run since he destroyed Lilith. He has no desire to challenge Rhen–until Karis Luran once again threatens to take Emberfall by force. Her own daughter Lia Mara sees the flaws in her mother’s violent plan, but can she convince Grey to stand against Rhen, even for the good of Emberfall?”

This review is probably going to turn into a massive obsessive rant about the book – it was so good!! I loved the first one so I wasn’t surprised when I was instantly hooked into this one too, it felt like I just read it straight after.

I really love Brigid’s writing, her ability to weave together the magic and plotlines and the ability to swap between different character’s POV was just a marvel. She has got such a great tone, and it was so easy to tell the difference between the characters chapters. The magical land that she has created comes across so effectively in everything that she describes, it becomes so real and becomes a place that I can imagine perfectly. I always admire when an author can perfectly balance world-building, moving the plot along and character development – and she can just do it all wonderfully.

The characters are so well-built. I love the parallels between the female characters, showing the differences of how women can be strong – whether it’s from reading, and a longing for peace or being powerful on the battlefield. There were also so many dynamics! Families that are made out of loyalty and not blood, emotionally manipulative and controlling parents, PTSD, trauma and blooming friendships. Even the smallest of characters felt built and had a critical role in the developing plot, each person had their purpose and never felt like a filler character. I really liked the range of characters and how they all fed off each other.

Grey was my favourite character from the first book, and I was over the moon when I heard that the sequel was going to be following him! I think he’s so interesting and has such a complex personality from everything that has happened to him. I loved exploring his character, especially from Lia Mara’s perspective. Of course, the relationship that blossomed between them was amazing. The tension in every moment, every touch made me feel desperate to read more and for them to get together. I think they might just be one of my top book relationships! They are just so perfect for each other, and all of the forbiddeness of it and the secret wanting, fulfills some of my favourite tropes.

The plot itself was interesting, I couldn’t work out where it was going at some points and I was quite happy to just let the writing lead me on. Reflecting back, it may not have been the busiest of storylines and not much may have happened – but it covered everything it needed to and threw up some surprises along the way. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

I feel like I’m just so biased! I really enjoyed the whole story and every single aspect of the book. If I could, I’d go over and read it again for the first time. Sometimes a book just really tugs on your heartstrings and leaves an imprint in your mind – and this series so far is doing it for me. The writing, the characters, the story – everything, pulls me in and makes me so invested. I can’t wait for more.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

-Personally, Emma

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