Title: Deadly Dreams
Author: K.J. Sutton
Series: Fortuna Sworn
Publication Date: Dec. 3, 2020
Publisher: Once Upon a Time Books, LLC
Synopsis: I pushed myself up and stumbled away. But the memory followed me like a bad feeling. It found its way through the shabby mental wall I’d erected. Within seconds, it filled my skull again.
Fortuna has made one too many sacrifices to protect the ones she loves.
She no longer knows how to go about her day-to-day life like she’s normal. Like she’s not utterly destroyed. Just a glimpse of Ian O’Connell’s face causes panic attacks, and Collith isn’t much help, considering he’s fighting demons of his own.
Amongst so much inner turmoil, Fortuna’s abilities are still changing. However weak she feels, she knows she’s getting stronger. Fortuna does her best to hide it from other Fallen, because in the world of monsters, strength will get you killed. Well, that and unpredictable panic attacks.
Unfortunately for Fortuna, it’s when you’re most vulnerable that enemies—new and old—like to come out of the woodwork…
TRIGGER WARNING: This novel contains scenes or themes of PTSD, rape, sex, violence, and gore.
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.
Oh my word, this series! My mind is reeling from the action, the twists and turns, and the shocking revelations throughout Restless Slumber, especially in the last third of the book! Nothing is what it seems in Fortuna’s world, and the lines between good and evil are so blurred, Fortuna basically should trust no one!!
Fortuna is very impulsive in the first two books, and I like how Fortuna is not as ruled by impulsivity in this one. She’s become more patient and is as compassionate as always. Fortuna is a woman who will do anything for those she loves, and family is everything. She recognizes her rash actions and decisions and even tries to rectify some of them and repair the relationships she splintered. That’s not to say, she’s not impulsive. Fortuna still acts without thinking, and sometimes she needs to stop and think about the ramifications of her actions. However, she’s clearly changing. She’s showing so much emotional growth, and she doesn’t even realize it.
Home wasn’t four walls or the address where all your mail came, but the people you returned to.
Fortuna is traumatized by what happened at the end of Restless Slumber and is going through a very dark time. Her life is in turmoil and constant danger, she is riddled with guilt and fear, and she is burdened with ruling the Unseelie Court. Even her dream world with Oliver is no longer a safe and dependable refuge. This book highlights Fortuna’s loneliness and sense of isolation even though she’s rarely alone.
Collith also deals with trauma, and he struggles to communicate for much of the novel. There were times when I felt so bad for him and other times when I wanted to shake some sense into him. The same goes for Laurie. The men in Fortuna’s life are complex, secretive creatures with dark, connected pasts, and it’s fascinating to see their stories slowly unravel even if I don’t completely understand their motivations.
I also love the abundance of fierce and powerful women, as well as the constant introduction of new characters. Gwyn, Viessa, Lyari, Mercy, and others are all well-layered, independent females who epitomize female strength, and I love their individual roles in the story. The introduction of Dracula creates another unexpected twist and leaves me with more questions. I also want to know more about Oliver and the dream world. Fortuna has many questions about Ollie and the world, as well as the shadow figure who preys there. I have a feeling these characters and others, like Cyrus, Finn, and Adam, will be further explored as the series progresses.
There are so many dynamic characters in this story, and though I’m never sure who is good and who is evil, I’m intrigued by them all. I love that everyone’s motivations are unclear and that there are many layers to their stories. No one is thoroughly good or thoroughly evil, and that moral grayness adds so much to the suspense. It also makes for a fast-paced read with tons of action and intense moments and leads to some major jaw-dropping moments!
The strong imagery and vivid depiction of the characters and setting also add to the intensity of the story. Sutton’s writing quickly immerses you into this dark fantasy world filled with rich and well-developed characters. Fortuna’s dream realm is particularly vivid, and I love how the symbolism, foreshadowing, and imagery enhance the characters and setting.
Finally, I have to talk about that ending! Sutton sure knows how to create a jaw-dropping conclusion that leaves the reader salivating for more! Fortuna has experienced so much heartache, and I can’t imagine how she is going to handle everything she learned toward the end of the story. Her decisions will no doubt change her life irrevocably, and her story is far from over. I can’t wait for the next installment in this dark fantasy series!
- Fortuna’s growth. She is a fascinating character, and she showed so much growth in this story!
- The complexity of the characters and plot. This series is rich, well-layered, and well-developed.
- The morally grey characters. You never know who to trust and who to fear!
A true monster doesn’t care whether they’ve become one.
Strange how fear could twist reality against you, make you question your own instaincts.
Revenge is best served with little cakes and lots of icing.
This is the third book in the series and isn’t a standalone, so I recommend reading the first two books before you read this one.