About the Book:
Title: Raven Unveiled
Author: Grace Devon
Series: Fallen Empire #3
Page Length: 336
Publication Date: Nov. 8, 2022
Synopsis: A woman with the gift to speak to the dead—and the assassin pursuing her—may be the only chance a crumbling empire has of holding back true evil, in this electrifying fantasy romance from the USA Today bestselling author of Radiance.
Siora has been on the run for longer than she cares to remember, from her past and her gift. Born with the ability to see and speak to ghosts, she has heard their desperate pleas as an otherworldly predator stalks the dead amid the fertile killing fields of the collapsing Krael Empire. The creature’s power and reach are growing with every soul it consumes, but Siora is preoccupied with her own troubles: namely an assassin who has sworn an oath of vengeance against her.
Gharek of Cabast was once the right-hand man of the reviled empress but is now a wanted fugitive. Although his reasons for hunting Siora are viscerally personal, what Gharek can’t anticipate is that when he finally does find her, she will hold the key to saving his world, or what’s left of it. To make good on old debts and protect the vulnerable dead from a malevolent force, Gharek and Siora will both need to make an ally out of an enemy—and trust that will be enough to save each other.
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A story of redemption, sacrifice, second chances, and love, Raven Unveiled follows Gharek and Siora, enemies turned allies, in a quest to retrieve an ancient artifact and protect Gharek’s daughter.
The story begins while Gharek is hunting Siora for betraying him and his daughter. Determined to find her and drag her back to his daughter so Siora can apologize and ask for forgiveness, Gharek ends up becoming Siora’s ally. Theirs is a complicated partnership, as there are so many unspoken and unresolved things between them, but they work together well. Their begrudging partnership slowly turns into more as they begin to realize that their feelings for each other are deeper than either ever realized.
I liked both Gharek’s and Siora’s character arcs. They are unique and layered characters who go on major emotional and physical journeys throughout the story. Gharek was brutal and violent, but there’s more to him than being the cat’s paw. He is a loving and devoted father, a warrior, and a survivor. Gharek’s story is so intriguing, and I loved his path to redemption. As the cat’s paw, Gharek was forced to do unspeakable and violent acts at the behest of the Empress. He doesn’t justify his action, and he shows a lot of remorse for what he’s done. Much of what he did was to protect his daughter. The love that Gharek has for his daughter is without measure, and he shows time and again how far he’s willing to go to protect her. She is the one good thing in his life.
Siora is a survivor too, and she’s kind and caring. It was interesting to see Gharek and Siora face past betrayals, explore a new tentative truce, and slowly begin to trust each other. I was also really intrigued by Siora’s abilities, much of which she has yet to acknowledge and explore. It was fascinating to see her embrace her powers more. She can do some amazing things, especially as her powers grow and change throughout the story.
The plot and world-building are immersive, and there’s a ton of suspense and intrigue as Siora first tries to elude Gharek and eventually ends up kidnapped with him and working with him to save his daughter. Their journey is dangerous and deadly, and they encounter more than one enemy who wishes them dead. Even though I didn’t read the other books in the series, I was easily pulled into these treacherous worlds with unimaginable dangers and deadly supernatural beings. At the start, I found it a little bit tough to follow because I didn’t know the backstory, but it is explained and referenced enough that you get the main ideas pretty quickly.
Many secondary characters are interesting too, especially the ones who were connected to Gharek and Siora’s initial conflict. I was also interested in Gharek and Siora’s captor. He was mysterious and intriguing, and I was curious about his motives. A couple of other characters I loved were of the spectral sort. They both showed how strong family bonds can be in this life and beyond. These relationships, as well as Zharek’s relationship with his daughter, highlight the strength of familial love and ties.
This was an entertaining epic fantasy with dynamically developed characters, vivid world-building, unique fantasy elements, and tons of suspense and action. I’m thankful to for Berkley Books for providing me with a copy of the book. All thoughts are my own.
- The world-building.
- The fantasy elements.
- The romance.
“Love is the concubine of both fear and desperation when you’re a parent,” he said flatly. “And ruthlessness has no measure.”
Ruthless plans made under the impetus of loving intention had terrible consequences.
Raven unveiled will appeal to readers who like:
- enemies to lovers
- forced proximity
- only one bed