Series: Ondine Quartet
Author: Emma Raveling
Published: July 2012
It has been six months since ondine Kendra Irisavie arrived in Haverleau, the hidden capital of the water elemental world.
Six months since she discovered her destiny as the sondaleur.
Six months since a series of devastating events left behind their mark.
Now, as she enters the chevalier elite program in her final year at Lumiere Academy, Kendra continues forward on her prophesied journey against the Shadow. Obsessed with what she must do to keep those around her safe, she struggles to balance her powerful magic and the demands of her fate with the challenges of friendship, the complications of romance, and the bonds of family.
Meanwhile, the threat of the Shadow looms larger. Kendra and her friends investigate a series of puzzling human and elemental disappearances in the city of Lyondale and uncover a horrifying tactic used by the Aquidae in the war.
When danger strikes close to home, Kendra must separate the truths from the lies and choose who and what to believe.
Even if it means facing what she fears the most.
**note: this book was provided to the Bookhookup by the author but it did not in any way influence this review.
Today our friend Z is joining us to review Billow. Z and Ana have been waiting patiently for it to be released and now that it is we’re ready to share our thoughts with you!
Ana & Z will put Billow on the second shelf!
Ana: I really enjoyed this book. I thought the story took some good turns and continued to intrigue me. The bad guys are even more evil in this installment and things are getting personal. The magic is changing and Kendra’s abilities are shifting which makes the action more interesting. The romance is still in flux…I have a love/hate relationship with that element because I can’t decide which way I want it to go!
Z: I’ve been looking forward to this book since I finished the first, Ana knows this as I kept badgering her for release date info. It didn’t disappoint! Kendra’s life has been turned upside down, in good ways and bad. Billow is about her struggling to deal with the trauma of those events, while balancing being a teenager, a girl, a powerful empath AND her worlds prophesized saviour. No easy feat. The love story still drives me crazy, because I’m as clueless as they are on how to resolve this. It’s in direct opposition to their responsibilities and her own mortality. Ah sweet forbidden romance! I was itching for them to give in to lust.
Ana: The characters in this book continue to evolve. They are growing and embracing their roles in this world. Kendra has a lot of weight on her shoulders and although she may not always handle things in the best way, she’s fiercely motivated to play her part in winning this war that threatens her people. We see a dark side to her in this story that wasn’t visible in the first book. Tristan is a true warrior…he’s selfless and focused on what is important outside of himself. But, I must say that I’m falling hard for Julian. He is the character that I think grew the most in this book and he never fails to surprise me with his actions. He’s a hidden gem!
Z: Julian was one of the best characters. He was such a surprise! So many hidden layers. Tristan the strong, protective, gorgeous Selkie Prince still has my heart. Always trying to do the right thing, but you can tell he’s dying to cross the line. Kendra is far from perfect, but she’s a real fighter and stands up for what she believes in. She’s also fiercely protective, which frustrates those close to her who want to stand by her side and help. As they work their way through these struggles you get a great insight into the strengths and weakness in all of them. We see their vulnerabilities while they fight their personal demons as well as the real ones. I feel like I bonded with them. Yeah, we totally bonded.
Ana: Julian! His character is really making this story very interesting for me and I hope we see lots of him in book 3! I also like the fact that Kendra’s dark side was explored a bit in this book…I like that she’s a bit of a broken hero. I loved Ian as well. He’s a great new character!
Z: Gotta agree! Julian was a big like. I can’t even call what’s going to happen in book 3 now. I love all the fight training scenes. The anticipation when Tristan joined in. Julian’s banter.
Ana: There’s not much to dislike here. As a matter of fact, I can only think of one thing. I don’t want to spoil anything but I didn’t like what happened to one of the female characters towards the end of the book. I can understand the reason for it…but it doesn’t mean I have to like it!
Z: That was a shocker. I was reading the kindle version, but mentally I threw the book across the room, wailing.
How it compares to book 1:
Ana: Unlike many second books, I thought this one was just as good as the first and is a great lead-in to the 3rd installment. The story took some turns and we learned more about the characters which is quite unique in middle books!
Z: This book was all about humanizing the characters for me. About life, loss, limitations, and acceptance. Lessons we all eventually learn, and an important step for these characters. A fitting second book. Oh, and we finally get a glimpse at the Shadow! Creepy.
Ana: Good book…good series! I must admit that I still struggle with all the terminology that’s unique to this book but the definitions at the back are wonderful! I like that it’s different than some of the other books I’ve been reading lately and I’m fully invested in these characters. I want more Julian…and more Tristan…and the next book!!
Z: This series should totally be more popular. Once you get your head around the terminology, it’s easy to like. I pretty much read it in a day and wanted more. Those are my favourite kinds of books. The thing I’m most looking forward to within the next two books is visiting Tristans turf, the Selkie Kingdom!
So, the bottom line is that you should read this series, it’s great!!
Thanks again for joining us Z…make sure to mark your calendar for a discussion after book 3!