Title: Mageborn by Jessica Thorne
Date Published: 18th February 2020
The room is small and dark. Row upon row of jars line the shelves, each one sealed with blood-red wax. The seal’s mark is a twisted circle of briar with gleaming, gold-tipped thorns. And in each jar a flicker of forbidden magic dances… beautiful, but deadly.
Sold to the Crown in the aftermath of the Last Great War, Grace Marchant has never known her parents. Now, she trains as an elite soldier tracking down mageborn – those born with an ancient and long-outlawed magic – and destroying them if they don’t surrender their power to the Crown.
The mageborn who submit are collared, then handed over to the King’s cousin and heir: the elusive Bastien Larelwynn, Lord of Thorns, locked away in his shadowy workshop deep inside the castle. What becomes of them is hard to say – the Lord of Thorns keeps his secrets close.
Grace has always fought the voice inside her that questions whether the law is truly just, but when her closest friend is next on Bastien’s list, Grace’s loyalties are tested to the limit. Confronting Bastien – searching his strangely compelling obsidian-black eyes for answers – Grace is shocked to feel herself begin to change, to show the first signs of the wild magic she so fears.
Only the Lord of Thorns has the power to save her and the rest of the mageborn – if he doesn’t destroy them all first…
A dark and addictive fantasy read, perfect for fans of Graceling and Sarah J. Maas.
You can buy your copy here: https://geni.us/B08334HN5JSocial
I want to thank Noelle Holten for inviting me on this blog tour and Bookouture for providing me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
This is my first book by Jessica Throne (also the first in the Hollow King Series) and I will freely admit I don’t really read that much fantasy romance stories but I was intrigued by the blurb so I thought I’d give it a try!
Mageborn is a romantic fantasy, stuffed full of magic with a dash of adventure which was a delight to read.
I liked both of the main characters, particularly Grace. She’s a strong and fierce warrior but can be prickly and often holds people at a distance (this is understandable once you get to know her). She’s also hiding a secret, her powers, which she thought were gone, are beginning to return. Then we have Prince Bastien, someone who is feared and disliked by most. At first I thought Bastien was your typical brooding anti hero but it turned out he had a lot more to him than meets the eye.
I found the world building, in particular the magical elements very intriguing. There are mageborn, each with a different type of power, for instance a flint can control fire and is not harmed by it or leeches who can suck magic from others.
The romance was nicely done throughout, even with a few steamy bits just to add a bit of heat to the story.
I will say the first half of the book was a little slow burn, with a fair bit of world building and introducing the characters but the second half really picks up the pace.
Mageborn is a vividly written magical tale to dive into and escape from reality for a few hours!
About The Author:
Jessica Thorne saw Star Wars at an impressionable age and life was never the same. She’s loved fantasy, romance and science fiction ever since and spends her time looking for adventure – in the pages of her books.
Sometimes she is Ruth Frances Long and won the European Science Fiction Society Spirit of Dedication Award for Best Author of Children’s Science Fiction and Fantasy, 2015.
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