This is a great start the the Blade of Secrets duology! I can’t wait for Master of Iron to be released to find out the fate of Ziva and her group. I’m amazed at the world building and story concept. I am a sucker for a map and this book includes a gorgeous one at the beginning that was very easy to reference back to when needed. The setting and plot are new and exciting, however, the best part is the main heroine Ziva. She suffers from debilitating social anxiety and panic attacks. The realism of her neurodivergence is portrayed with such perfect description and accuracy. This is something that effects many people and in different ways. But it was very easy to relate to Ziva, even if on a basic level. She is so strong despite her anxiety and I love how she fights to overcome and protect her loved ones.
I also love her relationship with her sister, Temra. Even though Ziva is older and sees herself as the protector, it’s clear that they equally share that role with each other. It is a very heartwarming relationship. Petrik is such a dynamic character and I really can’t wait to see more of him and see him open up as he experiences the world. It took me a bit to warm up to Kellyn. I thought his personality was a little dull until closer to the end. But there is definitely potential. The book really has everything. Magic, world building, slow burn romance, adventure, and excitement. I voluntarily reviewed this after receiving a free copy.