Reviews for Realm Breaker

Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

Spindles—doors to other realms that are closed or long lost—are mostly thought to be a myth, as are legendary beings Immortals and Elders. But when the Immortal Taristan appears with a Spindleblade, ready to break as many Spindles open as he can, a motley crew of adventurers must come together to stop him. Pirate Corayne, Elder Domacridhan, assassin Sorasa, young queen Erida of Galland, and Andry, the squire to a dead knight, must travel to one of the last known Spindle temples and head off Taristan’s plans before he can bring myths and fairy tales through the portal and into Allward. One of the group is the last of an ancient line whose potential power might be enough to stop the Immortal from turning the world to ash. Like Aveyard’s hit Red Queen books, this series starter is a hefty tome with well-mapped details of lands, monsters, and people. Rotating narrators keep the story fresh and leave readers wanting more. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Red Queen (2015) put Aveyard on the map; the series hit number one on the New York Times best-seller list and gained her a host of fans who will be eagerly awaiting this new adventure.


Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

When the realm is in danger, only a small band of misfits can save Allward. An in medias res prologue, told from the point of view of the lone squire accompanying the 12 Companions of the Realm, tosses readers into the thick of a quest. Half the Companions are human heroes and half are immortal Elders; they seek to stop a rogue thief and his wizard accomplice from using a magical Spindle to tear a passage between worlds for nefarious ends. A disastrous battle sends squire Andry fleeing with Cortael’s sword so villain Taristan can’t get his hands on it. Grieving Elder Dom requires both a person of Corblood (a descendant of human travelers from another realm) and the Spindleblade Andry protects to stop Taristan from bringing ruin to the realm. Dom seeks Cortael’s secret daughter, Corayne, a bright but sheltered teenager with a pirate mother. At times the narrative tension is undermined by flashbacks that readers already know the conclusions to and by occasional repetition caused by the multiple point-of-view jumps, but there’s a wide variety of action scenes, daring escapes, and betrayals. Many tropes and character types are familiar, but exquisite descriptions and clashing motivations result in a nuanced, sprawling realm with a sense of complicated history. This world is highly diverse in terms of both skin tone and in the refreshing range of roles female characters inhabit. An epic series opener of old-school high fantasy catering to modern audiences. (map) (Fantasy. 12-18) Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Publishers Weekly
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Only descendants of Old Cor, an ancient fallen empire, can manipulate the Spindle gates that connect Allward to other worlds. One such individual, Cortael, believes the Spindles should stay shut, as they have for centuries—not all realms are friendly, after all, and some contain monsters. Cortael’s twin, Taristan, however, aims to open as many Spindles as he can find, destabilizing Allward so that the evil entity he worships, What Waits, can take over. When Taristan kills Cortael during a battle for control of a Spindle, Cortael’s ally Domacridhan—an immortal “Elder” whose ancestors hail from another land—tracks down Corayne an-Amarat, the 17-year-old daughter of Cortael and a notorious pirate queen, and persuades her to help stop her uncle. Aiding their quest are 17-year-old squire Andry Trelland and 30-year-old assassin Sorasa Sarn, among others. Insufficiently elucidated worldbuilding and late-defined stakes hinder this expansive, action-packed series launch from Aveyard (the Red Queen series). Some point-of view characters lack depth, but the ensemble cast, whose skin tones range from golden to dark brown, features several fierce females whose uncertain fates may lure readers back for the sequel. Ages 13–up. Agent: Suzie Townsend, New Leaf Literary. (May)


Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

Spindles—doors to other realms that are closed or long lost—are mostly thought to be a myth, as are legendary beings Immortals and Elders. But when the Immortal Taristan appears with a Spindleblade, ready to break as many Spindles open as he can, a motley crew of adventurers must come together to stop him. Pirate Corayne, Elder Domacridhan, assassin Sorasa, young queen Erida of Galland, and Andry, the squire to a dead knight, must travel to one of the last known Spindle temples and head off Taristan’s plans before he can bring myths and fairy tales through the portal and into Allward. One of the group is the last of an ancient line whose potential power might be enough to stop the Immortal from turning the world to ash. Like Aveyard’s hit Red Queen books, this series starter is a hefty tome with well-mapped details of lands, monsters, and people. Rotating narrators keep the story fresh and leave readers wanting more. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Red Queen (2015) put Aveyard on the map; the series hit number one on the New York Times best-seller list and gained her a host of fans who will be eagerly awaiting this new adventure.


Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

When the realm is in danger, only a small band of misfits can save Allward.An in medias res prologue, told from the point of view of the lone squire accompanying the 12 Companions of the Realm, tosses readers into the thick of a quest. Half the Companions are human heroes and half are immortal Elders; they seek to stop a rogue thief and his wizard accomplice from using a magical Spindle to tear a passage between worlds for nefarious ends. A disastrous battle sends squire Andry fleeing with Cortaels sword so villain Taristan cant get his hands on it. Grieving Elder Dom requires both a person of Corblood (a descendant of human travelers from another realm) and the Spindleblade Andry protects to stop Taristan from bringing ruin to the realm. Dom seeks Cortaels secret daughter, Corayne, a bright but sheltered teenager with a pirate mother. At times the narrative tension is undermined by flashbacks that readers already know the conclusions to and by occasional repetition caused by the multiple point-of-view jumps, but theres a wide variety of action scenes, daring escapes, and betrayals. Many tropes and character types are familiar, but exquisite descriptions and clashing motivations result in a nuanced, sprawling realm with a sense of complicated history. This world is highly diverse in terms of both skin tone and in the refreshing range of roles female characters inhabit.An epic series opener of old-school high fantasy catering to modern audiences. (map) (Fantasy. 12-18) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


School Library Journal
(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Gr 9 Up—Corayne an-Amarat is a pirate's daughter eager to embark on her own adventures at sea in Allward. But she is also the last of the ancient Cor bloodline and the only one who can use the ancient spindleblade to protect her realm and make sure the Spindles that can open destabilizing passages between realms are closed. Reluctant to embrace this lineage, Corayne joins weary immortal Dom as he attempts to mount a second quest to succeed where the first failed in closing the Spindles. Aided by a mercenary assassin and Andry, a squire and the only mortal to survive the first quest, the group faces numerous obstacles leading to fights, chases, and other derring-do. Aveyard follows up her blockbuster "Red Queen" series with this high fantasy that holds space for women and offers an inclusive cast. The realm of Allward features people with a range of skin tones and backgrounds—Andry is described as "honey brown" while Corayne has "golden skin." Shifting viewpoints, flashbacks, and changing locations cut through much of the novel's potential urgency as the narrative pauses continuously to ruminate on the failed quest seen in the prologue and offer character backstories. VERDICT Aveyard creates a compelling world in this series starter. Recommended where the author's previous books are popular.—Emma Carbone, Brooklyn P.L.

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