26 August 2018

These Rebel Waves - Review

These Rebel Waves - Stream Raiders #1
by Sara Raasch

What they say: Adeluna is a soldier. Five years ago, she helped the magic-rich island of Grace Loray overthrow its oppressor, Argrid, a country ruled by religion. But adjusting to postwar life has not been easy. When an Argridian delegate vanishes during peace talks with Grace Loray’s new Council, Argrid demands brutal justice—but Lu suspects something more dangerous is at work.

Devereux is a pirate. As one of the outlaws called stream raiders who run rampant on Grace Loray, he pirates the island’s magic plants and sells them on the black market. But after Argrid accuses raiders of the diplomat’s abduction, Vex becomes a target. An expert navigator, he agrees to help Lu find the Argridian—but the truth they uncover could be deadlier than any war.

Benat is a heretic. The crown prince of Argrid, he harbors a secret obsession with Grace Loray’s forbidden magic. When Ben’s father, the king, gives him the shocking task of reversing Argrid’s fear of magic, Ben has to decide if one prince can change a devout country—or if he’s building his own pyre.

As conspiracies arise, Lu, Vex, and Ben will have to decide who they really are . . . and what they are willing to become for peace. 


I received a copy in exchange for an honest review!

What I say: I've seen some pretty mixed reviews for These Rebel Waves. It seems to be the Marmite of books, where you either love or hate it. I really enjoyed the story, but that's probably because I didn't go in with expectations of gay pirates and I like Sara Raasch's writing style.

The story focuses on multiple characters: Benat, Adeluna and Devereux. The religion in Argrid opposes the magic in Grace Loray.

In a world with a very controlled magical system and strict rules, Ben has a big secret. Ben is the Prince of Argrid and doesn't exactly want to follow the path chosen for him. Sara Raasch does a wonderful job representing a young gay character, without making his sexuality an issue. Lu is a rebel, a fighter and all round magical expert. She kinda reminded me of Rey from Star Wars for some reason. Vex is a  steam raider (think pirate) and an immigrant. I particularly appreciated how Raasch uses Ben, Lu and Vex to present the different sides and opinions across society.

The main characters are all well written and developed. I found the political/society structure intriguing. Everybody has an agenda and it's the combination of the characters which provides the balance. Adapt to the rules of society or embrace where you come from, but can you do both?

The world building is vivid and exciting. The narrative is strong, although a touch confusing at times. The characters are great, but can we have more Vex next time and a little more pirate action please?

I enjoyed These Rebel Waves and cannot wait to see what happens next. Oh the cliffy!!

4 Stars in my Sky!


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