Good afternoon to all of you reading! This is my second book of July read, and I love it dearly. I hope you all had an excellent weekend, and let’s start this week off right!
Customary warning: This is a reminder that these are my personal opinions. My thoughts and feelings are not your thoughts and feelings. I may not always be the target audience for a book; sometimes I am. If I do not like a book, that doesn’t mean you’ll dislike it. If I love a book or simply like a book, you may hate it. Take everything I say with this knowledge. If it sounds interesting to you despite what I’ve said, then go ahead and read it. You’ll only know you like something if you read it yourself.
That being said… Spoilers ahead.
Before the Broken Star by Emily R. King
Synopsis From The Book
Everley Donovan is living on borrowed time. The lone survivor of her family’s unexplained assassination, she was saved by an ingeniously crafted clockwork heart. But the time she was given won’t last forever. Now, every tick-tock reminds her how fragile her existence is and hastens her quest to expose Killian Markham, the navy admiral who shattered her world and left her for dead. But Everley’s hunt for justice will be a long and hard-won voyage.
Her journey takes her to a penal colony on a cursed isle, where she will be married off and charged to build the new world. It is here, and beyond, that hidden realms hide, treasures are unearthed, her family secrets are buried, and young love will test the strength of her makeshift heart. When Everley discovers Markham may not be who he seems, her pursuit for truth is bound to his redemption, her tragic history, and her astonishing destiny.
Initial Thoughts Before Reading:
The book I got in my Unicorn Crate box, that I had no prior knowledge on. Funny how this always seems to be the case. However, the premise sounds cool. It clocks in at 283 pages (big font too), so I’m anticipating this to be a quick read. The cover is beautiful, but the cover under the dust jacket is to die for. I will insert them below.
I’m not sure what to expect with this, but Unicorn Crate has not let me down before!
Initial Thoughts After Reading:
It was a good book. I was thoroughly entertained. If anything the world captured me the best, and the most out of everything. It is the first book in a trilogy, and when the others come I am interested to see how this story goes.
Everley is the orphan of an assassination, dealt to her family when she was a child. She was stabbed and left for dead, only saved by her uncle and a clock that was used to function as her heart. Since then she has vowed revenge, and revenge came to her one day dressed identical to how he had been when she saw him last. She vows to finally kill Killian Markham.
Everley goes to the docks for information on Killian Markham, only to be arrested for streetwalking and sentenced for seven years penance at the colonies. She takes the sentencing because it is the only way to get to Killian. On the boat she interacts with the other girls who were sentenced and is forced to marry Jamison Callahan a noble lieutenant and a boy her age. (He saves her from marrying another man). She and he have a rocky start to their relationship and Jamison talks to her about his life to get her to talk about her’s. She does not.
Once at the colonies, Everley discovers her brother is alive and that he believes their father had been the one in the wrong and the butchery of their family justified. Killian reveals himself immortal, and the prince of a fairytale come true. He forces Everley’s hand to lead him back to his lost kingdom. The team goes through many hardships on their journey and arrive in the otherworld. It is here that Killian reveals his true nature, kills his once beloved for good, and aims to take over Everley’s world.
After a massive battle, Everley and her friends narrowly survive, before Killian is swallowed by a whale. Returning to sea, her boat is taken over by a mutiny, and she decides to become a pirate with them, aiming to hunt and find Killian before he can destroy her world.
What I Liked:
Everley; She was strong, and dedicated. Her determination to see him for what he was, was not waned even in light of learning some truths of her family. She was good with a sword, and I had hoped that she was as great an adventurer as her family. I believe her to be, and hope that in future books we see this.
Jamison; I really liked him. His back story is tragic (though nothing touches on the tragedy of Everley’s backstory) and he was trying to do right by the world. He is the moral compass that Everley needs in her life even if she doesn’t want to abide by it and I hope that we get more for him outside of being a very prince charming type character.
Everley and Jamison’s relationship; They never fell in love, not really. Jamison may have begun to like her, and Everley him but it was never outright love. Additionally they were with each other and knew each other for months, the feelings developing over time. Regardless they are not beholden to each other and that is nice.
The girls; All of the girls were interesting with their own backstories. I can’t wait to get to see more of them as we continue on this pirating adventure.
Prince Killian; He is a good villain. I want to know the truth of his story, not the fairytale ideal. I thought the complexity of him loving her sleeping princess was nice, but I figure it won’t amount to much later on. For what it’s worth his complexity in the story was nice.
Concept and Worlds; This was the best part. The concept of a world in exploration like our own, where there is also magic. We get multiple religions. Multiple bed time stories. We see how they treat their prisoners, and an age of pirates. I do like this world setting a lot, especially the concept of different realms, each their own. I can’t wait to explore this further.
What I Would Have Liked or Changed:
Everley and Jamison to see eye to eye for once and for him to agree with her to do what she choses at the end. Just for once, having no sort of drama in this way, please. We already have so much of it with the rest of the world.
Time Taken To Read
“Miracles are forged in the heart.” – Father Time, pg 254