My point-of-contact for the event was Angela Orlowski Peart, one of the authors. After a few emails back and forth, I realized that she had written some pretty sweet fantasy fiction, and she realized that I love to blog about books, especially of the e-read variety. Clearly a magical partnership was necessary. Angela emailed me her books, formatted for my kindle, in exchange for my honest review. Luckily for her, I LOVED her books, so I don't have to write any diplomatic BS about her work being better-suited for people who aren't me.
The Forged Series is a blend of urban fantasy and high fantasy, Forged by Greed being the former and Forged by Magic: Origins being the latter. Forged by Greed is a full-length novel, and Forged by Magic: Origins is a collection of short stories that serve as a prequel. Read them in the published order, even though they're both available. Nerdy #ProTip: Prequels work best when read after reading the main novel (think The Chronicles of Narnia).
Two Seattle 16-year-olds, Jatred and Jasmira, are not your typical star-crossed lovers. They are not even your typical Shape Shifters. Sure, they try to live an ordinary life. At least, as ordinary as the Prince and the Princess of the rivaling ancient Races–the Winter wolves and the Summer leopards–can live. But eventually they learn that not much about their existence can be normal. Especially when the Races’ two commanding Goddesses are involved.
I somehow managed to read this in a single weekend, one that was largely spent working at JCP. Almost immediately, I was intrigued by this overlapping mortal/magical world, one with two races of shapeshifters, two goddesses, an amulet, and otherworldly realms. At first, I struggled to keep straight all of the characters and their respective races/friend groups, but as the book progressed, I understood the need to have so many characters. There's definitely a lot to digest in the first few chapters, but if you stop trying to analyze it (difficult, I know!), and just keep reading, everything comes together.
I know that the genre of "star-crossed lovers" has been done, many times over, but I never grow tired of it. Plus Angela definitely included a few twists to keep things interesting. The true reason Jatred and Jasmira can't be together is MIND-BLOWING, to say the least.
The more I learned about the Winter and Summer races, the more I wanted to know. Angela has borrowed from ancient mythologies worldwide to create a a new mythology of two races, led by two goddesses.
So obviously, I was excited to finish this book and then start the prequel, which fills in many of the gaps about this mythology.
Prequel 1 to the Forged Series, Forged by Magic: Origins is a collection of short stories, featuring the characters from the Forged series. This is the first of two prequels to the series. Each story is told from a different character’s point-of-view.
Find out how the Amulet and the Dasht-e Kavir have been created, and how the powers of the Universe opened the gates to other dimensions, inadvertently releasing unworldly supernatural creatures into the Human World.
Like I said, the mythology Angela has created is fascinating. I loved reading more about the magicians, the Amulet and the Dasht-e Kavir, the goddesses, and the shapeshifters in their early days. I was a little confused by the inclusion of a story about a water nymph, but I assume this character becomes important later.
The next prequel just came out on July 10th! I haven't had a chance to read Forged by Legacy: Beginnings yet, but rest assured, I will review it as soon as I can!
Linking up with Heather & Katie
for Book Club Friday!