Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Book Review: First Year by Rachel E. Carter


First Year by Rachel E. Carter

First off I want to say a huge thanks to Rachel for sending me this book for free!
On to the review!
Okay, so I have had my eye on this book for a while. I remember reading about it a couple of years ago and wanting to read it at the time but for some dumb reason I didn't. A month or so ago I saw on the wonderful world of bookstagram that Rachel was giving copies away for reviews and I was like “YAASSSS! Totally getting on that train.” If you know what I mean. Anyway, I loved it a lot and although it was a plot that I feel has been done a thousand times, this story will stick out to me against the others. I loved the characters, I thought Rachel did a good job describing them and their personalities, along with their looks.

First year is about Ryiah and her journey to becoming a Black Mage of Combat, who are country’s most fierce warriors. Only one thing is missing, the magic required to even go to the academy where she and her twin brother will train to become Mages. When Ryiah finally gets her magic it’s only through injury.  Ryial fights to stay afloat at her new school and has more to prove than anyone there. The odds are stacked against her and her friends as one of the kingdoms Princes loathes her and casts stones at every opportunity. Ryiah has the choice to back out or press on and hope that maybe just maybe, she can learn to control the magic inside her without killing herself.

That’s probably a poor description of the story BUT I don’t want to give too much away. I honestly loved this book. I thought it was cute and entertaining and I found myself rooting for Ryiah and feeling sorry for her loses. I think the world building could have been better and I would have LOVED a look into her brother’s life at the academy or her friend Ruth, both of which had different majors than combat. I really liked how realistic and relatable Ryiah and her friends were. She is extremely hard working even though she knows she isn't as good as the others at both school and wielding her magic. I think Ryiah is a good example to young girls and she seems like a total baddie!

Recommended age:

On to the ratings!

0 = None 10 = Tons

I didn't get emotional while reading//listening to First Year but I did really hate having to stop reading and looked forward to every time I got in my car to start the book reading to me again. I went over my lunch break time a couple of times because of reading this book! So is day I had MY feelings wrapped up in the story. I did hurt for Ryiah when she was embarrassed or hurt by the actions of others, also I loved the sibling interaction with her and her brothers.

The story is about fighting. Fighting physically and mentally. I would have loved to see more mental struggle with her but there was just more physical violence. Nothing too graphic but there was a lot of talk about crushed bones, blood and just combat in general.

Sexual content:
Very little of this happening. There was one kiss which wasn’t graphic but the character talks about not having control over their body. Lol. Natural though.

Crude language:
Not much crude language at all. One of the things I liked about this book. Clean enough for young readers and felt mature without the profanities.

Other elements/comments:
Bullying, some rule breaking.

I just really enjoyed the book and luckily there are like 4 others for me to indulge myself with! Again thanks to the author for sending me the ebook!


- Sarah

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