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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

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4.6 out of 5
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  • Jampacked with fast paced action, shocking secrets

    The Heart Forger talks about the Tea's journey as she uses the teachings as a bone witch/Asha of the House of Valerian - the good, the bad, and the scary while trying to find out what happened to The Heart Forger and the importance of this particular character. Storytelling:- Book 2 continues from Tea's POV with the addition of the scribe's (bard). It also adds more scenes with the Heart Forger. With threats all over the Eight Kingdoms, it was time for Tea to fight for the ones who lost and stop sulking of their loss. Book 2 focuses on the present versus the past, comparing to its predecessor. The retelling of Tea's past supports the current plot development. Its difference is slight but a nice shift change as The story moves more to the present and why the Bone Witch, from isolation, decides it was time to come back from exile and resurrect a few help from some friends. Each event discussed answers the "why" of the present, making readers empathize with Tea and clears up any questions. Book 2's Tea is more mature and well-developed. Gone are the days of Tea's naivety. She knows her purpose and is more determined to save everyone. Characters' Development:- In the past, Tea faces dangers of the unknown as she learns what it means to be a full-time Asha but learns from them as Tea faces the danger head-on with more experience and expertise. There were many deja vous moments, past recollections, and self internalization, as Tea will mention. Book 1 has readers discover the Bone Witch's world - full of magic, intrigue, and purpose, while Book 2 is more about critical players who will be helping Tea's mission. The Heart Forger will be a critical player in shaping the story with an indelible impact in the end. He will be instrumental in helping Tea seek the justice that plagues the Eight Kingdoms, which ironically aren't the beasts/monsters terrorizing its people. Dramatic and Startling Scenes:- There are a lot of exciting fight scenes, dramatic confessions, and jaw-dropping revelations at the end. Some of the monsters Tea had to face are nothing compared to realizing who was "really in control" at the end. All I can say...H-O-L-Y! (I'm still speechless with the reality that fell into Tea when everything unfolded in the last few chapters. It was one secret uncovered over another with complex connections that I would never in a million years realize possible! There as just so M-A-N-Y secrets - dangerous, out-of-the-box, incredible, dark, foreboding, etc. I was a wreck when everything came crashing down! PS: I'm still palpitating from the action and still wrapping my head around the secrets revealed. Book 2 shattered my presumption that sophomore books cannot beat the debut, wherein I say that this book disproves that theory so WRONG!

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  • perfect sequel

    While the first book had set up the world and the characters in the past, and with a little narration going on in the present as Tea is preparing to take on the world, The Heart Forger shifts the focus so as to simultaneously focus on the past as well as the present. In the past, Tea, after having bonded wit the azi, is hiding the fact of her having a daeva familiar. Meanwhile, some nobles across the land have been suffering from a sleeping sickness that even affects Kance. Coupled with the fact that the Faceless Aenah has been whispering secrets in her ear, Tea is starting to doubt the motives of the elders when it comes to Dark asha's well-being. In the present, Tea is waging war against the very elders who had exiled her, masterfully taking on the might of the kingdoms and the people who she called friends. An interesting effect that Chupeco wound into the tale was that the events in the past, as Tea is narrating to the the bard, sort of mirror the events in the present - so you get these parallels between the relationships that existed then and how they are now. Speaking of relationships, Tea and Fox both get romantic developments in this book. As for Tea, we already know it was Kalen who she fell in love with, and this book nicely slow burns that hate-to-love development into a amazing couple. As for Fox's love, Princess Inessa becomes a wonderful addition to the group as an ally and as a character who is pretty formidable. Speaking of additions, Likh features more prominently after being reluctantly inducted as an asha by the elders and demonstrating some pretty awesome magic skills, and is also being hinted as a love interest for Khalad. Khalad, the heart forger, is developed further as a character, because of his relationship to Tea in the present, as well as his work in the past to cure the sleeping sickness. Tea, meanwhile, gets the best turn in her character arc, as she goes from a celebrated asha in one time to a feared one in the other. The awe associated to her slowly becomes realized as she grows into her own power, and also realizes she was capable of much more than she was told. Narratively speaking, this was a strong sequel which felt perfect in nearly all aspects - pacing, plot, characters, world-building!

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  • Loved

    How does anyone write like this? But am so grateful they do. How wonerful to be able to escape into another world.....no passport reqired. Thanks Rin

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  • The story isn't over

    The fight against the second faceless gives us another story that you want to read in one go. I can hardly wait for the third and hopefully last volume.

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  • Dark and Passionate

    I’m now officially in love with this series. The world, magic, drama, power struggles, and dash of romance have completely stolen my heart and leave me aching for the final instalment. The story took on a much darker tone and had a plot filled with deceptions and betrayals. There were plenty of moments that had me gasping and wondering what would happen next. The ending in particular came from a place of pain and power. Tea continues to grow as a complex morally grey character who I absolutely love. She’s still awkward and kind with her friends, but the more she uses dark magic, the more dangerous she becomes. I adore seeing the human side of her, but what the bard sees is equally as fascinating. Many of the side characters continued to endear themselves to me, with Fox still being my favourite. The story is fast paced and filled with more magic than I expected. I love the imagination on display, made all the better by the incredible prose. The world still feels fresh and enticing, and I can’t wait to see how it all wraps up. This is a series I recommend for fans of dark fantasy, necromancy, epic battles, and vulnerable yet powerful characters. I get the feeling the third book will be a heartbreaker, so get those tissues ready!

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