*I received the ebook version of this from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Title: Apex Rising
Author: Tom Wright
Series: (Talker #1)
Genres: Fantasy, Action
Revenge, power, and love in a world where men and women commune with animals.
Revenge: After a treacherous attack, former spymaster Katria promises to find who betrayed her. The thought that keeps her going, night and day, is vengeance.
Power: Unbeknownst to Prince Neru, Katria still lives. In her absence, he struggles to help a far-off village in his kingdom. He placates his father, the king, but knows his people live under the brutality of the Apex.
The Apex movement gains ground, openly recruiting and openly attacking.
As Neru races to stop the Apex, Katria moves against her past enemies. Political turmoil erupts into bloodshed. Constant danger looms over the kingdom.
Love: Against the odds, each must complete their deadly tasks to ever see the other alive again.
Apex Rising is an action packed fantasy novel full of magic, revenge, battles, bravery, deceit, strength, and even romance (though thankfully, not much).
What I like/What I Had Problems With:
The magic- 1) it really stands out, with each individual person being bonded to a specific type of animal (they’re called Talkers). The concept is an interesting one and something I really enjoyed reading. 2) Unfortunately the background wasn’t really explained: how is it possible, how are the animals chosen for each person, why is it possible ect. I feel like it should be better explored and explained.
The Characters- 1) Katria is a strong female lead, and most definitely is not your average female heroine. At the very beginning you learn of how she suffered from disfiguring burns and why she speaks in such a harsh rasp due to her damaged throat. From then on, since we now know her reason for motive, we follow her as she journeys to the city that was once her home and attempts to seek out justice and revenge for the damage inflicted upon her. She kills, as well as finds out the true reasoning for what happened to her; it’s quite the adventure. And let’s be honest, it was really refreshing to have a strong female lead who, for once, isn’t ‘breathtakingly beautiful’ or ‘gorgeous’ or any of that nonsense. 2) I feel like if we had more time with her, more of a look in her head, we would be able to understand and connect with her better.
Neru is the son of the king, and prince of the realm. He’s fairly flat as a hero, but an interesting character nevertheless. He takes it upon himself to deal with the problems The Apex creates, and in doing so he gets entangled with a problem bigger then he originally thought. Which obviously ends with a lot of action because who doesn’t love action?
Nalia is a bitter old trainer with some snark and sass lined up and ready to fire. Honestly, I saw her more as a warrior, as someone who fights, then how she actually was in the book. She was more of a supporting character though, and so I feel like we didn’t get to really see much of her true ability and character. I’d definitely love to see more of her in the next book of the series.
The World Building- The world building was fairly well done, but I feel like it took more of a backseat position and so it was more difficult to get a hold on the world. While much of it is hinted throughout the book with descriptions, it’s mostly an afterthought as the action and issues presented take the lead.
The Romance- See, the thing I love most about Wright’s writing is the fact that in every book I’ve read from him so far, the romance is kept at a low, if at all. It refreshing. I like how there’s more action than romance, how the two the romance is between don’t meet again until the end.
That said though, the ending was a bit of a disappointment. I won`t share too many details (because spoilers), but it really did seem rushed and painfully cliché. I played it out differently in my head, with there being more hesitation and shock.
The Writing- The action and issues were well presented and the final conflict was well written (especially the action). The few twists there were I enjoyed and there’s nothing all too wince-worthy.
However, I feel like some parts could have been stronger, and possibly even made more of an impact. Other then that though, it was an interesting, enjoyable read.
If you enjoy books full of fantasy and action, I suggest Apex Rising.
Decided to try something a little different. I don’t know if I’ll continue with it, but yeah.