ARC Review: Faye and the Ether by Nicole Bailey

Title: Faye and the Ether

Author: Nicole Bailey

Page Length: 284

Publication Date: Oct. 27, 2020

Synopsis: For as long as I can remember, the sea has called to me, luring me to explore the secrets hidden beneath its cresting waves.

Faye is tossed into a current of uncertainty as she deliberates over her college choices. More than anything she wants to study by the sea, forever chasing the line where the ocean meets the horizon. But she finds herself dragged down by the riptide of her and her mother’s financial restraints. How can she be true to herself when anchored by her world’s limitations?

As the leader of the deadliest group in the Ether, Daron is at the top of his game. Yet there is one thing he’s failed at time and again–finding the human-raised Ether. It’s a known fact amongst his team that success on that particular mission would change their lives in unimaginable ways. Yet Daron couldn’t comprehend how true that was… until he saw Faye.

Guided by Daron, Faye enters a world she never knew existed. One filled with mythical creatures, struggling to coexist. As Faye wrestles with where she fits in this magical realm, secrets are revealed that turn the tide once more.

Inky darkness is seeping ever closer. Can Faye and Daron work together to save Ether and themselves? Or will the world be crushed under a wave of evil?

From author Nicole Bailey comes a young adult adventure filled with magic, intrigue, and the inner well of strength that flows through us all.

LINKS:     Goodreads    |       Amazon    

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, including Amazon, and I may earn a small commission, at no cost to you, if you purchase through my links.

My Review:

Faye and the Ether is a wonderful and immersive young adult fantasy about a girl who is thrust into a world of mythical beings and prophecies. I love the world of the Ether and the way that the author introduces classic mythology, including centaurs, gods, selkies, and more, with a contemporary spin. The vivid imagery brings the characters and story to life, and the world-building is fantastic!

The characters are so well-developed and layered, and I particularly liked Faye, Daron, and Daron’s father. Each has such depth, and I loved watching the relationships grow and change. Faye is a fantastic protagonist. She spent her life believing she was human until she meets Daron. Her strength and resilience, as well as her bravery and empathy, are admirable. However, Faye is also scared, confused, and homesick, and I love that the author didn’t shy away from these negative feelings. Faye has to leave behind all she knows to go on a dangerous quest. As her entire world is turned upside down and she begins her physical journey, she also goes through an emotional one.

Daron also goes through an emotional journey throughout the story. Though Daron is used to holding in emotions, with Faye’s encouragement, he starts to reveal his true feelings about life, love, and family. It was fascinating to see this fierce and controlled warrior open up and become vulnerable. I also like how supportive he is to Faye and the other characters in the story. A loyal and good person and a great leader, Daron is a true friend to Faye, especially in her times of need.

The fate of the world rests on Faye’s shoulders, and she faces many dangerous and potentially deadly situations. Unfamiliar with the beings and customs of the Ether, Faye must rely on her intuition and her new friends for guidance. From combat training to dangerous mountain treks to epic confrontations, the story is action-packed and suspenseful.

The messages about love are one of my favorite parts of the story. There are so many different kinds of love explored in the novel, from familial love to romantic-love to unrequited love, and I loved them all. Daron and his father, for example, have a phenomenal relationship. Supportive and connected, they epitomize a great father-son relationship. The slow-building romantic relationships were beautiful as well, and I loved watching them develop. I’m eager to see how these relationships progress in future books.

Messages of love, acceptance, fighting for what you believe in, and staying true to yourself, as well as the well-developed characters and world, make Faye and the Ether an unforgettable story. I thoroughly enjoyed this fast-paced adventure, and I’m excited to read the next book in the series! Thanks so much to the author for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.


Favorite Parts:

  • The romance!
  • The world-building.
  • The characters.

Favorite Lines:

Every mission needs a team. One being’s weaknesses may be another’s strengths.

Could tension be a living thing? If so, it breathed down both our necks, wrapping us in its smoldering embrace.

Bravery isn’t being unafraid; bravery is being afraid and carrying forward regardless.

I wanted to be free, out of the cage of school, off the factory line of life. But what else was out there?

Faye, I was finding, was like a river you stepped into only to discover it was over your head. What came off as disinterest in her was actually the still waters that obscured the drowning depths beneath.


Readers who enjoy YA fantasy with rich world-building and fabulous characters will love this story!

31 thoughts on “ARC Review: Faye and the Ether by Nicole Bailey

  1. Wow! This book looks so great! I’m adding this to my TBR asap! I especially love that this book teaches about all the different kind of love. This, I believe, is a good plot and moral to a story that so many books are lacking in nowadays. Thanks for the informative review!

  2. As a “Faye” myself I’m first flabbergasted that anyone would name a character Faye but that’s a personal thing….beyond that I love how you’ve laid out the review. It feels fair and thorough. Great job.

    1. Thanks so much, Faye! I love the name Faye – though I’m always a bit surprised when someone uses my name too. There aren’t a ton of Julie’s in the books I read, and my middle name is Rae , which I rarely see.

      1. lol…Thanks for Stopping by Julie. Yes, we’re always surprised to see our own name. I love the name Julie…two syllables–now that’s awesome πŸ˜‰ Love Rae too…wasn’t that the Star Wars name and it got popular? Hmmm…

  3. This sounds like such a good read.I’ll have to add it to my TBR list. I really enjoy your reviews, even if my bank account may not appreciate them as much – haha!

  4. Fab review, Julie! I can’t believe I haven’t seen this one around more. I love the illustrated cover and the story and characters sound wonderful! Love the idea of this parallel fantasy world and I love me a story about love (all kinds of course)! Lol

Leave a Reply