Title: The Raven and the Dove
Author: Kaitlyn Davis
Genre: YA Fantasy/Retellings
Publication Date: March 9th, 2020
eARC provided by author through NetGalley. All opinions are my own.
“A princess longing to be free…
On the dawn of her courtship trials, Princess Lyana Aethionus knows she should be focused on winning her perfect mate, yet her thoughts wander to the open sky waiting at the edge of her floating kingdom. One final adventure calls. Upon fleeing the palace, the last thing she expects to find is a raven prince locked in a death match with a dragon.
A bastard aching to belong…
Reviled son of a dead king, Rafe would do anything for his beloved half-brother, Prince Lysander Taetanus, including posing as him in the upcoming courtship trials. When a dragon interrupts their secret exchange, he orders his studious sibling to run. After suffering a fatal blow, Rafe is saved by a beautiful dove who possesses forbidden magic, just like him.
Fate brought them together, now destiny will tear them apart…
Unknown to the world above, on the foggy sea ten thousand feet below, a young king fights a forgotten war. He believes Lyana is the queen prophesied to save the world, and with the help of his favored spy, hidden deep in the highest ranks of the dove royal house, he will stop at nothing to have her.” (Goodreads)
I was so excited to see this listed on NetGalley. I had added it to my tbr on Goodreads solely based on the premise. Little did I know that an artist I absolutely love would end up creating the cover. It was meant to be! I had high hopes, I mean they were through the roof. I tried to reel it in as much as I could and although I did, it didn’t stop me from picking up my kindle right away to dive in.I’m happy to say that I really enjoyed this.
Let’s talk about the characters. There are four main characters that are the driving force for the plot. Each one gets their own point-of-view. This always makes me happy when I come across it in a book. It helps to understand what is going through their minds and connects the dots of the plot in a lot of ways.
Lyana is a girl who wants to be free. A bird that is caged, although that’s quite ironic since she has wings. Her family is always trying to set her on the right course but she is determined to make one decision solely hers. She is brave, loyal, and kind. Sometimes her heart gets in the way and it causes for some interesting plot twists. Her actions were quite childish at times but all of it makes her human.
Cassi, Lyana’s friend and guard, is a real piece of work! I can’t say too much about her without giving anything away but, dang! She is strong, calculating, and will do anything to make sure everything goes as planned. Such a morally grey character and it was great!
Rafe and Lysander, the half brothers. If you don’t already know, I love brothers in books. It makes for an interesting dynamic and this particular one didn’t disappoint. Each from the same father but completely different. I loved getting to know each one and honestly, I don’t think I would be able to pick a favorite. Each has their own struggles and although its hard to lean on one another sometimes, I hope they can pull through.
The world this author created was unique and a joy to read about. The avian-inspired theme really added to the uniqueness of the world and the people in it. Each House is represented by a different god and have wings that associate with a bird. Each isle is unique to that House as well. There is forbidden magic and although that has been done before, I think that because of this new world I didn’t mind. It felt fresh.
As for the plot, it was full of betrayal, forbidden love, and political games. Although it was clear from the beginning how one plot point would go, I still didn’t fully grasp what was to come. The plot twists were intense and that ending was brutal!
Overall, I enjoyed this one a lot! I am invested in this world and these characters. I don’t know what book 2 has in store for me and my emotions will be all over the place but I am ready! This is definitely a series you don’t want to miss.