Wednesday 17 June 2015

Blog Tour / Book Musings / Giveaway - The Chronicles of Izzy Boxed Set by Michelle Graves


Welcome to the blog tour of The Chronicles of Izzy Boxed Set by Michelle Graves. Today I am reviewing the entire series for it. Read on to know more about Izzy and her adventures and my thoughts on it.

Title : The Chronicles of Izzy The Complete Series
Author : Michelle Graves
Series : The Chronicles of Izzy 
Genre : Urban Fantasy, Fantasy
Source : A free copy from the author through IndieSage

Tour: The Chronicles of Izzy Boxed Set by Michelle Graves
Blurb : 

I lived an ordinary life. Perhaps it was life of loss, maybe even a lonely life, but ordinary all the same. Never in a million years could I have predicted the events that would unfold after that fateful delivery. Some Seer I was.

But that doesn't matter any more, that life, the one I'd thought was my reality, was nothing more than a weakly constructed facade. The lines between reality and fiction have blurred, leaving me with nothing but the cold hard facts. The world is vastly different than I ever understood. Guardians and Seers are real, and I have the power within me to tip the balance in a war between good and evil that had been brewing since the beginning of time. The fight was coming to a head and the outcome hinged entirely upon me. I have to make an impossible choice. Would I step into my role as a Seer and face the growing Darkness head on, or would I cower and let everyone I loved suffer and die? The Darkness will rise and the Prophecy remains, the Seer must Fall. So Fall I will. Friendships, love, and sacrifice will all play out transforming Izzy into the Seer of prophecy. Find out what happens in The Chronicles of Izzy. 

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My Musings : 

I am so buying the boxed set!

I hope that shows how I feel after reading the series.

To be honest, I spent the prequel thinking what is so special about Izzy. Yes, it didn't prepare me for the roller coaster ride of destiny and love and sacrifice. The action begins in the first book, See how she runs and continues till the end. There's non stop suspense and thrill throughout the series. 
This is one series I read without looking at the book covers. Yes, I am a book cover lover but the blurb of this series had me so much interested in the story that I didn't even think to peek at them. And the author delivers much more than what is hinted in the synopsis. If I had read it as single books I would have not been able to withstand the wait for the next book. And that's saying something because it's not that easy for me to continue with series books. 

What to say about the story? Basing a book on Seers isn't anything new but the way they have been paired with Guardians and the powers bestowed on them was different. The world created around them with their supposedly good and bad factions was unique and was shown in a fresh light. Of course, what's a fantasy story without a prophecy in it? The convolutions in it was, in one word, scary. Seriously, if I was Izzy I would have gotten out long ago. But then Izzy is special and braves everything for her loved ones. 

The theme of the book, I felt, suits the modern world well. I especially liked that the Darkness brings out the worst in everyone even the protagonist, Izzy who is to be the ultimate fighter against the dark ones. The book is chock-full of adrenaline based incidents which happen one after the other without any respite to the characters and to the readers. This kept me on my toes anticipating the next move. There were many scenes which had me surprised with their ability to turn the story in a totally different direction. 

The characters were very good and they kept me engaged with their intensity and action. I absolutely loved Izzy's snarkiness and Molly's bull headedness and Sena's no-filter mouth. I had such a great time reading about their antics. I missed Izzy's attitude in the second half of the series. Other characters who impacted me were Kennan and Aberto with their pure love ( I call any love which is selfless as pure ) and Conall and Ian with their acceptance. All other characters were peripheral. They were there to pull the story forward. The demon, Sonneillon made more of an impression than Damali. That's one part which disappointed me. I usually expect more from my villains! 

The pace was very fast and at no place did it slow down. The story flowed beautifully from scene to scene. There was always this continuity with the plot and the characters. The plot was made intricate with the convoluted turns in the prophecy leading to action half the time while the other half was spent in waiting and behind-the-scenes details. In spite of less direct action, it did well as a page turner. 

So if you guys want to know my verdict, just read the first line of this review. And guys, do read this series! It is a lovely addition to the urban fantasy lovers' shelf.

My one line review : A prophecy oriented fantasy tale for strong heroine lovers.

My rating : 5/5

My reread factor : 4/5

So now you guys know what I think about the chronicles, read on to peek into the books. 

See How She Runs Excerpt

I dreamt of rolling green hills. I found myself standing on the precipice of a cliff staring down into a raging ocean. The waves beat ruthlessly against the cliffs and I wondered what it must be like to try and swim against such a force. The sound of my name being called pulled me from my reverie.

“Mom?" I asked, wondering if this was just a dream or if she were really there.

“Baby, I won’t be back again. I want you to know how much I love you. But it is my time. I feel myself fading. I just couldn’t leave without telling you goodbye.”

My feet carried me towards her before I could even make sense of what she was saying. Violently, I threw myself into her frail arms.

“Please don’t leave me!" I pleaded with her, burying my face in her boney shoulder. “I can come and get you. Just wait a little longer. Please mom. Please don’t leave me again, not when I just found you.”

Fool's Errand Excerpt

“The darkness will reemerge. There are steps being taken, lies being spoken, plans being laid. The threat shall come and you, my dear, must protect our kind.”

“How am I expected to do that when I could not stop it the last time?”

“You will do it the same way you did the last. There is a Seer.”

“Surely you are not talking about that old prophecy! I believed that to be a falsehood, a fairytale of sorts to keep Seers in line.”

“You, yourself, should know all tales have some bit of truth in them. This is no different. She lives now. The elders have all felt her presence for a long time, yet her power grows every day. She must reach her potential. You are entrusted with this, Conall.”

“Who is she?” The woman’s riddles grated on my nerves. Surely she could not expect me to seek out this Seer.

“You will know when the timing is right. Of this, I am sure.” She smiled as I spun her around the room, making everything else a blur.

“Do you know what is coming?” I tilted my head to the side, wondering if the woman was altogether there.

“Of course, child. I’ve seen what is to be and what cannot be. It is my blessing and my curse. It is why I live alone in a city of pretenders and practitioners. But this knowledge is not yet yours for the knowing.” Again, a smile ghosted across her lips before her face turned serious once more. “There is something more. Something that I feel I must tell you.”

“What?” I sighed.

“Protect her, and she will find the truth you seek. She will be your savior.”

See How She Fights Excerpt

“Hello?” I yelled. Even in the dreaming I knew this was a half-baked idea. I heard moaning in the distance. I moved forward through the foggy oblivion, the sound my only guide. The eerie noise echoed and bounced until I could not find my way. I was lost.

I turned to run but was greeted with a new nightmare. I looked down at almost a dozen bodies. Each one more gruesome than the last. They reached out for me with blood crusted arms. Their wails shredded my soul. I couldn’t breathe. Everywhere I looked, there were eyeless figures, begging me for help. I wanted to save them. I wanted to make them whole again. I tried to remember that it was just the dreaming. It was not real. This was not reality. I closed my eyes and tried to steady my breathing.

“It isn’t real,” I shouted into the fog. I opened my eyes to find them moving towards me. The sightless mob closed in around me and as I began to scream, I heard him. I heard Xavier whisper.

“Oh, but it is real. This is what shall become of you all.”

I screamed out as their cold fingers brushed against my skin.

See How She Falls Excerpt

As I let the inevitability sink in, I heard it. A familiar voice called out of the fog. A voice I hadn’t heard for two months, yet there he stood. The culmination of nightmares and fears wrapped into the body of a cloaked figure. My future cradled in the palms of his crushing hands. Motionless, I was rooted to my place. The unchangeable darkness, the coming storm, it all pushed down upon me.

He moved towards me, cutting a path through the fog to stand above me like some sort of centurion. The robe covered all but his sneering mouth. The mouth that housed the words that would end me. “Do you see it now? The inevitability? This world will burn for its sins, Izzy. These people, they don’t deserve the grace they are given, or the protection of our kind. Why not just join us? Fighting really is futile.”

The hopelessness pushed against me, prodding me, taunting me. Swallowing deeply, I rose to my knees. I’d never been a quitter, I wouldn’t start now. I’d been warned that the darkness would call for me, that it would tempt me. Strength I didn’t know I possessed rose up within me. Whatever this person was doing, I could fight it. I could fight him. Taking a deep breath, I stood on shaking legs to face the robed figure.

“I will do everything in my power to protect this world from whatever it is you are trying to bring.”

“Look down at your leg, Izzy. Do you really think that you can stop us? Just two more runes and the bridge will be complete. Your fight was lost before it began.”

At his words, the burning began on my calf, ripping deep into my soul. I knew that when I awoke, I would have another mark. I wondered if this one would be my undoing. My rubbery legs failed me, and as I began to fall I heard a laugh.

Seeing is Believing Excerpt

“But they said the darkness will still fall, Ian. Doesn’t that seem like everything we’ve done has been for nothing? I just can’t believe a loving God would allow all of that sacrifice to be done in vain.” Giving voice to the thoughts that had plagued me since we got the news sent a chill down to my bones. I hadn’t wanted to face my anger or my fear. I’d wanted to plow on like Izzy. But I wasn’t her; I was a freaking empath.

“It isn’t solely up to the Gods. We are in a battle against much darker forces, unimaginable beings. The Gods could not combat them alone; that is why we were created. We are meant to maintain the balance.”

“This doesn’t feel like balance to me, Ian,” I replied around a yawn. The day had been one of the longest of my life. Bone tired, I climbed into bed next to Ian. I didn’t care if I was still in my gross clothes from tromping through the swamp. The only thing on my mind was sleep.

“We will try tomorrow to make sense of all of this. For now, sleep.” Ian whispered words sending me into the one place I absolutely did not want to be – the dreaming.

Please don’t let there be Revenants, please don’t let there be Revenants. I chanted to myself, hoping when I opened my eyes I would be alone.
See How She Awakens Excerpt

The Old One will lie, the darkness whispered inside of me. The voice a twisting darkness that seemed to ooze with every syllable. He will betray you once more. Don’t trust him.

“GO AWAY!” I shouted. The voice was growing stronger. I hadn’t heard it like this in the void. Why had Aberto taken me away from my refuge?

“I will never leave you again,” Aberto swore. “You may rail against me, vent your rage, tell me to leave a thousand times, but nothing will sway my resolve.” His face transformed, frightening me. The way he looked at me, as though he wouldn’t be able to survive losing me again, made me want to run. I couldn’t do this. I’d lost everything. “Izzy, I would not survive losing you.”

As Aberto lowered himself to the ground, he raised his knees, resting his arms across them so his head hung there. Defeat and exhaustion warring with one another.

He lies, the darkness murmured.

“STOP!” I screamed, curling in on myself. “GET OUT!” I could feel it churning within me, trying to stretch itself to consume the light left within me. I clawed at my stomach, trying to rip it away.

“What is this? What has happened?” Aberto rose to move toward me. All emotion washed from his face. This Aberto I remembered well. He was the one that had taught me to soul walk; that taught me my soul was not my own. He was ruthless.

“You should’ve left me in the void. Now everyone will perish.” Repressed tears swept forth, bringing with them the pain and loss that had been walled up within me for God only knew how long.

“Why would you think that?” Aberto’s voice softened as he cradled my face in his hands. My eyes looked up to meet his, and I was sure he could see it. The darkness that lingered in the background, pushing me, twisting me into something I never wanted to be.

“You see it, don’t you?” I pleaded with my eyes.


Meet the Author

Michelle Graves is a self-proclaimed nomad, moving every two to three years with her husband the Army man, her beautiful daughter, and a fat tailless cat named Torri. When she is not writing away trying to purge her mind of yapping characters she can be found entertaining her daughter, attempting to craft (whilst trying not to injure herself with the glue gun), baking yummy treats, or reading. She admits to having a restless spirit and forces her family to go out on adventures whenever possible. They lovingly play along.

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1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and review the ENTIRE series! I know it was a lot. LOL. I'm so happy you loved it. <3 I truly appreciate your thoughtful review and your participation in my blog tour! Now, excuse me while I go throw confetti and frolic through it!