Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Luminaire by Ciye Cho (ARC)

Luminaire (Florence Waverley #2)
Ciye Cho
Pub: November 28, 2012

Luminaire (Florence Waverley, #2)Being the only human in a world of merfolk... isn't easy. Florence Waverley chose to stay in Niemela, but things have gone awry. Secrets have risen and the prince she cares about has pulled away. All the while, dark dreams warn her of a tragedy that only she can stop. But in order to save the merman she loves, Florence will have to enter the Life Path tournament: a brutal test of fear and madness.

The tournament is a rite of passage--a maze where young mermaids and mermen battle to find their purpose. It is also a place where Florence will face grave danger: mermaids with evil magic, tunnels filled with sea fire, and guardians who wish to use her as a pawn in their secret plans. But will Florence be strong enough to survive the tournament... or will she perish inside it?
Everything hangs in the balance: her life, her world, and her love.

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Book two in the Florence Waverley picks up a little into the future in the sea world of Niemela. Rolan is now king, but his relationship with the human-forced-'mermaid' is strained for some reason. Rolan still hasn't told their world about Kieran's deceit and not everyone is keen to follow the young king. Now that their warrior numbers have taken a serious hit, the counsel requests to bump up the annual Life Path tournament to fill the void with new recruits. Florence, now alone and still unliked by her fellow sea mates, agrees to choose and train in one of the seven life paths to support her best friend and Princess, who is forced to participate herself.
Training in the way of a mermaid isn't easy when you're merely human, but Florence shrugs off the constant disapproving glares from the community and the brush-offs from Rolan and moves forward in this new underworld life. But she has no idea what she's gotten herself into, because even if she can pass the initial test for her chosen life path, there's still the tournament to deal with, where either you come out...or you don't. And now that she's getting truth dreams that tell her Rolan and the children of Niemela will die if she doesn't go through and succeed, she has no choice but to push her way through the deadly maze. But the guardians are against her getting through, and the maze has been filled with new challenges that even the best of the mermaids can't get through, so how will she?
I actually enjoyed Luminaire more than the first novel, Florence, mostly because of the tournament and the odd group of mermaids Florence joins with in order to better their chances of survival, including a bitter warrior who would love to see her fail. It kinda reminded me of the Hunger Games in Catching Fire, but an underwater version, so all the crazy/deadly obstacles kept my attention. If you haven't read the series, its uniqueness surely makes it worth the read. :)
ARC provided by author for honest review.

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