BOOK REVIEW: A Promise of Fire by Amanda Bouchet

By Amanda Bouchet
Publisher: Piatkus
Publication Date: 12th January 2016
Format: Paperback (448 pages)

Catalia “Cat” Fisa is a powerful clairvoyant known as the Kingmaker. This smart-mouthed soothsayer has no interest in her powers and would much rather fly under the radar, far from the clutches of her homicidal mother. But when an ambitious warlord captures her, she may not have a choice…

Griffin is intent on bringing peace to his newly conquered realm in the magic-deprived south. When he discovers Cat is the Kingmaker, he abducts her. But Cat will do everything in her power to avoid her dangerous destiny and battle her captor at every turn. Although up for the battle, Griffin would prefer for Cat to help his people willingly, and he’s ready to do whatever it takes to coax her…even if that means falling in love with her. (Goodreads)

When I was asked to read and review this book, I had no idea what it was about and I actually thought it was to do with the Earl of Warwick, who was known as the Kingmaker during the war of the roses. So I was more than pleasantly surprised to find that beneath this unsuspecting cover with a crown on it, there was a book that warmed the PNR/ Fantasy heart.

As many of you know, it is really difficult to try to come up with something that is fresh and original, but Bouchet has easily done this. She cleverly and masterfully brings together many elements, to create a complex and fully functional world, with a cast of characters that are multi-dimensional. Rather than have the more common Paranormal creatures, such as Vampires, Werewolves and Faye’s, the powerful beings in this world are the Greek or Roman Gods (I am terrible at determining between the two) and a number of mortals who have magical abilities.

When the book opens, there has been a coup by non-magical people and they have overthrown one of the houses that controls one of the three realms. The main character in the book, Cat Fisa, is reluctantly dragged into a political game that could rival those found in game of thrones.

Bouchet keeps the book very streamlined by centring it on Cat and the people she interacts with. While you learn a lot about Cat in the present, Bouchet sprinkles little nuggets of information and I began to build up a clearer picture. While most of the questions I had about Cat were answered, especially about one half of her parentage, the mysterious prophecy surrounding Cat was still has to be answered.

The romantic interest in this book is the formidable, but entirely charismatic Griffin. He just encompassed everything that I have grown to love about the alpha males in PNR and at times I felt he could have fitted very well into The Black Dagger Brotherhood Series. While it was clear he is very possessive and has a drive to get what he wants, he is loyal to a fault and this made clear with the relationship he has with his family and his small group of close friends, who make up his personal guard.

What was really enjoyable for me was the way in which Cat and Griffin’s relationship develops over the course of the book. She is coerced into going with Griffin and for much of the first part of the book dislikes him and what he stands for. As the group come across numerous obstacles, Cats feelings change towards Griffin and I ended up really rooting for these too. Yes, they way in which they crossed paths was unconventional, but you begin to see there are deeper issues than this that prevent Cat from taking that big leap.

While all this is happening, you also get a feeling that the God’s are playing their games and that Cat and Griffin are just pawns in this. Even by the end of the book, I was still unsure what their plans were and I think this will play out in the next day.

While Cat and Griffin are the central characters to the book, I was drawn to Griffin’s to best friends and his two sisters as it was clear there was chemistry between each couple. There is real potential for this series to grow beyond Cat and Griffin and I have my fingers crossed that these will come into existence.

The ending of the book was bittersweet, as I knew that more trial and tribulations are ahead as there are still two more books in the series. It will be interesting to see how this story will play out.

If all the books I read this year are half as good as A Promise of Blood, I know I am in for a cracking year. This is such brilliant and refreshing fantasy romance book and it is a must read all PNR romance fan. It is the perfect mix of the Black dagger brotherhood with its complex and twisty romance, Game of Thrones with so much political maneuvering and backstabbing, it would make Cesri Lannister proud and sprinkled with Roman (or Greek Mythology).

I’m just glad the second book is already out as I need to find out what happens next.



1 A Promise of Fire
2 Breath of Fire

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