Reviewed: February 24th, 2023
Released: August 30th, 2022
Genre: Paranormal Fantasy
Scarlet Seraphine should never have been born. Living in the House of Raven – the home of a race with magic and vampire blood – she is an outcast and wants nothing more than to escape her life of confinement.
But everything changes with the announcement of the Hex Trials – a deadly competition in which Ravens lose their lives at every turn. Scarlet is forced to abandon her plans to leave for a chance to claim one of the trials’ most valuable prizes, the only medicine that can save her sister’s life.
With time running out and her sister’s fate hanging in the balance, Scarlet has no choice but to compete. Death follows closely in every trial, and with a target on her back, Scarlet must decide whether fighting for her sister’s life is worth losing her own.
Helen’s thoughts: 5/5
An enoyable paranormal adventure with definite hints of the hunger games, though with vampires.
Beautifully written, Penfold keeps you engaged as you follow Scarlet, the half human, half vampire Raven. The child that shouldn’t have been allowed to live, so you immediately wonder why she still is still alive.
Being the underdog from the outset, with no magic, and constantly derided for her human blood, you would think Scarlet has no chance when competing against the full blooded, more powerful Ravens.
Scarlet is a wonderful heroine. Feisty but gentle. Competent and wise. Her weaknesses defintely appear to be her strengths, and her love for her sister and her family is beautifully portrayed. I won’t say much about Jack, as there would be too many spoilers, but suffice to say he is yummy and like mother like daughter!
I never knew there were so many words for red. You’ll know them all by the time you finish this book. An enjoyable read, a great debut and I look forward to book two.
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If you enjoy fantasy books then you will love my epic fantasy Sentinal series or the Romantic Fantasy SoulMist series. As a new threat against Remargaren is discovered, only one man can wake the ancient guards who can protect them, only he doesn’t know how. Start the adventure and stay for the journey. Sign up to my newsletter and download a free novella called Sentinals Stirring and get notified when my next books are published.