Author: Elizabeth May

BOOK REVIEW: The Fallen Kingdom (The Falconer #3) by Elizabeth May

BOOK REVIEW: The Fallen Kingdom (The Falconer #3) by Elizabeth MayThe Fallen Kingdom (The Falconer #3)
by Elizabeth May
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Add to: Goodreads


The long-awaited final book in the Falconer trilogy is an imaginative tour-de-force that will thrill fans of the series. Aileana Kameron, resurrected by ancient fae magic, returns to the world she once knew with no memory of her past and with dangerous powers she struggles to control. Desperate to break the curse that pits two factions of the fae against each other in a struggle that will decide the fate of the human and fae worlds, her only hope is hidden in an ancient book guarded by the legendary Morrigan, a faery of immense power and cruelty. To save the world and the people she loves, Aileana must learn to harness her dark new powers even as they are slowly destroying her. Packed with immersive detail, action, romance, and fae lore, and publishing simultaneously in the UK, The Fallen Kingdom brings the Falconer's story to an epic and unforgettable conclusion.

Kiaran goes still. “Save me, Kam?” His low, bitter laugh is cold enough to freeze my heart. His next words are whispered against the pulse at my throat. “(view spoiler), you’d wish you had killed me.”

So many times a person will pick up a book-or book series-and immediately put it down when it doesn’t suit them. I can’t say I do this often, but when I do, I generally don’t go back and give it a second chance. But, for some reason, I might have saw this on my feed or maybe I saw it on my iPad-I can’t remember-and I immediately wondered…did I really give this a fair shake?

“Bad habit,” I murmur.
“The worst,” she agrees.
My laugh is low, forced. “You know those stories where the lone hero saves the world?” I ask. “Do you ever notice that they don’t talk about what happens if the hero fails?”
Catherine looks impatient. “That’s where it began, wasn’t it? Thinking it was your duty to protect us all.” She shakes her head. “We’re not your responsibility, Aileana. This world isn’t your burden. It belongs to all of us.”

The Falconer seems to be a very polarizing series. In some ways, it is revered and a large group of people LOVE it. On the other end of the spectrum, people hate it with a fiery burning passion. As I said-that makes it difficult for a mood reader like me to decide if I should crack on or move on. But, again, for some reason, when I saw this, I just knew I had to try again. It pulled me in, made me wonder, made me remember how little I read fantasy back when I first tried it. That, and I read it with a dud of a friend who shall remain nameless-that tends to taint things when there’s a ridiculous black cloud hanging over everything, doesn’t it? Either way-I decided to try it…

“Threats? Too easy. If he doesn’t listen, I’ll challenge him to a duel and beat him a few times with a blunt instrument. He likes that sort of thing.” In fact, I seem to recall it being Kiaran’s idea of flirting.

And wow did it start out JUST as bad as I remembered. I hated it. Well-no-I just saw why I had put it down. The focus was fuzzy and I had nothing that really drew me in. Well-I decided to push for a few more chapters-why not? It was free, I’d already bought it years ago, and I had nothing else pressing. And I am SO. GLAD. I. DID. Because not one chapter after I was about to put that heaping pile poo down (and about when I put it down last time, though I made it a bit longer this time, obviously) my whole world was tilted on its axis and I lost my breath in a crescendo of ravaging stomach butterflies. Why, you ask? Come now…you all know me better than that.

Why love a butterfly when it starts to die the moment it gets its wings?

It always starts with a boy, doesn’t it? The minute I met the dark and mysterious Kiaran…I knew I was a goner. I knew I’d be finishing book one, and I knew I’d like it quite a bit. From the moment he appeared, the minute they began training, it’s as if the story opened up and the sun shone brighter. I actually was really loving it. The end was epic, mildly so, but on the epic end I’d say, for most, if not a little convoluted, and it began a newer, darker path for our MC and the guy she had grown to love.

“Are you trying to forget me, MacKay?”
Kiaran looks up at me, his beautiful lilac eyes oddly vulnerable. “Say that name again.” His voice is rough with emotion. He does feel. And if he still feels, then he’s Kiaran. And he’s worth saving. I smile.
His fingers slide down my ribs. Lower. “Again.”
“Kiaran MacKay.”

Now. That’s that. I was very up and down with this series-I’ll straight up admit it-but I didn’t want to quit on it. I just….felt something, ya know? Sometimes you get a feeling that if you just hold on a little while longer, it will pay off in the end. Well, it did. And, frankly, this might be one of the best finales of a trilogy I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading. Gone were the useless, tedious side characters that made me grit my teeth. Gone was the ridiculous humor and not-so-witty banter that really took away from the story. Here, we got to see a fully fleshed out story where we have our main 4 or 5 characters, a dark curse entwining not one-not two-but many characters that led to death no matter the path they took. Now…THAT is a story. That’s a story I’d sacrifice my soul for.

Right. Just battle four dozen soldiers to get the attention of my lover, who may or may not be evil depending on what mood he’s in.
“You know,” I say lightly, “I think we need to rethink your use of easy. Just a suggestion.”
“I have taken your suggestion under consideration and decided to ignore it.” She steps back with a smile. “Ready?”
I recall another portal Aithinne opened for me to cross between islands. “You’re not going to have me nearly crushed by tree branches again, are you?”
“No, no. Crushed by water.”

I know some people still found issues, but this is the one time I’m going to call them out. It’s cool that you wanted a darker character (they know who I’m talking about), and of course that would be freaking awesome, but the balance this author struck between longing, tortured, and dark was impeccable and I honestly don’t think it would have added a single thing. It wasn’t ‘rip your head off’ dark, yet you still always felt like you were teetering on the precipice of something that our characters couldn’t come back from. That they just might not win-or-someone would lose among their group. And, not to mention, she also added a weird tilt of balance where an evil character kind of made bad things happen when they wouldn’t have, and I think that’s the angle the author went for, as opposed to our characters losing large, irredeemable parts of themselves that would be hard to clean up in the finale.

“What’s your plan?” Aithinne asks.
“Go back, find the girl, and kill the Morrigan.”
“Simple. Effective. Small chance of success.” She smiles. “I like it.”

I just…I was in astonishment at the pure perfection that encompassed these pages and I could lose myself in them every single night. It’s a story I felt was written just for me-the tortured love, the sense of hopelessness, the way that we got glimpses of how much they cared for one another and how it could not/would not/will never be, all while battling an evil entity that is everywhere they turn, playing with their minds endlessly and???? I mean…how is this NOT peak entertainment? How are people not falling head over heels for this? I’m sorry, I know people have high standards but come ON…it is SO worth it to just let it all go and just feel and enjoy! But…hey…that’s just me.

Maybe the price of saving the world is forgetting how to live in it.

And I won’t praddle on too much longer, but I must say that I appreciated that author kept the silly humor far out of this one. We got snarky comments that could be cheesy, sure, but they finally balanced in and it added levity when things were bleak or the characters were losing their way. And, I’m sorry the nonexistence of a certain character in this one literally made this book work. If I had to hear that dumb **GRRRR** make any more silly, frivolous, or childish comments on the side, I’d have ripped my hair out. In fact, this person was the reason I about quit the series in book two. It’s just. Too. Much. And it is NOT good. So…the lack of presence there, I was here for it. And I also loved the way a certain evil character was incorporated in, how it added tension to Kiaran and Kam’s relationship, and how we finally were able to learn more about her-and I didn’t even know I wanted that. Go figure.

What does that make me, when a faery is capable of more humanity than I am?

SO. Do I recommend this series? Yes and no. Can you overlook the silly to get to the epic? Normally I can’t. But I did, and It was 100% worth it and I will be getting the hardbacks as soon as possible. This book series is for you if you can put aside the annoying side parts, if you can push through, if you can embrace that slow darkness that creeps in. But, if you want you perfection from every angle, no plot holes ever…then I don’t know. Obviously it’s not for you because this series is far from perfect. But I do feel bad for you- because book one, while not without issues, is a delight. Book two has a huge payoff, a dark, bleak look into what’s to come. And book three is dark, tortured, romantic, and a anguished lovers peril scenario lover’s greatest delight. Is it for everyone? Nah. But as the stakes finally became high enough-my biggest quabble from before-my tears were flowing and I was blubbering, fangirly mess in the end…and I couldn’t be happier I rediscovered this series and found a forever favorite. I hope you can find it in these pages, too.

(view spoiler)


Where in the world was this author hiding that level of writing??? Holyyyyy shit, that was epic and everything I needed to make this series one I will never forget. Y’all are sleeping on this one.

Review to DEFINITELY come.

BOOK REVIEW: The Vanishing Throne (The Falconer #2) by Elizabeth May

BOOK REVIEW: The Vanishing Throne (The Falconer #2) by Elizabeth MayThe Vanishing Throne (The Falconer #2)
by Elizabeth May
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Add to: Goodreads


My name is Lady Aileana Kameron.

First the fae murdered my mother. Then they destroyed my world.

Now I’m fighting for more than revenge.

Aileana took a stand against the Wild Hunt, and she lost everything: her home, her family and her friends. Held captive by her enemy, and tormenting herself over her failure, escape seems like only the faintest possibility. But when she gets her chance, she seizes it . . . to rejoin a world devastated by war.

The future is bleak. Hunted by the fae, running for her life, Aileana has only a few options left. Trying to become part of a society scarred by – and hiding from – the Wild Hunt; trusting that a fragile alliance with the fae will save her; or walking the most dangerous path at all: coming in to her own powers as the last of the Falconers . . .

“Then what changed your mind?” I ask him seriously. “About wanting me to kill him.”
Derrick is quiet for the longest time, wings fanning softly. His golden glow is slowly returning. “I see the way he looks at you.”
I swallow, afraid of his answer. “And how is that?”
“Like he wishes he was mortal.”

Ultimately, due to the ending of this book that lead to an AMAZING finale, this got bumped to a 4.

It’s not often I go back and rescind old ratings, but with the way this series wove together, inevitably creating a very cohesive, high-stakes, romantic and perilistic nightmare, I couldn’t help but to become putty for Kiaran and Kam. Ultimately, this series deserves much more recognition and I am not willing to not review this accordingly…even if I reviewed book three first.

Now I see why Kadamach moved heaven and earth to find you.

It’s no secret that I had a few characters that I just couldn’t stand. I rarely am so bothered-and even rarer is me pointing it out in a review-that it effects the way I feel about a series as a whole but, here, it was ruining it. Plain and simple. The story started out dark. We knew she’d be okay, sure, but it started out with a little of what makes me tick, and I loved that because book one lacked a little of the tension I needed. So, we were good. But then it just got a little silly. Characters. Plot. And, ultimately, not really what I wanted or needed.

I know I shouldn’t trust Kiaran either. Not after everything he’s done. But the truth is, I can’t remember the single defining moment when I decided to trust Kiaran. It just . . . happened. Like the way I came to care so much for him just happened. Somewhere between our hunts and our kills and our kisses, he left his mark on my bones.

And then. AND THEN. The stakes were higher, the romance alluring, tortured, and a bit fatalistic (a theme in book three that catapulted the finale to a top favorite of mine), and it seemed like the author picked a direction and STUCK with it. I was finally where I wanted to be, and it continued into book three and we all know the rest is history.

“Why did you choose me?” It’s all I can do to keep my wits about me when he’s kissing me like this. Because when Kiaran kisses, he does it with the whole of himself.
He whirls me around with so much grace it’s as if he isn’t even trying. “Because you challenge me,” he tells me. And then we’re not dancing anymore. We’re standing pressed together, our hands entwined. “I chose you because you’re my equal.”

The way Kiaran treats Kam, the way he pines for her, the way he knows that even if they end up together, she won’t live as long as he, the way he knows it will all end in the blink of an eye…It just made me fall even deeper for them. He’d do anything for her, even as he knows it’s killing him slowly inside, seeing her slowly slip away, and seeing that even the smallest misstep means he could lose her no matter what he does. It’s just so damn gripping. And it’s honestly what helped me make it through this series when I didn’t know that I could.

We burn bright, and we burn out. That’s what it means to be human.

I wish I could say my reasons for rating it thusly were a bit deeper than that, but they aren’t. I’m simple, and I want simple things. Make a story interesting. Don’t make it easy. Add some tension. Add some romance that isn’t insta-fied, that the hero and heroine have to work to keep alive…and add some peril. Seriously. I’m as simple as that. Hell, if you create romantic tension and a plot that HALFWAY makes sense, I’ll likely enjoy it. That. Is. All. I. ASK.

Truth forces us to confront the ugliest parts of the people we love. The monstrous parts.

Luckily, where the first book and middle of second lacked, the end of book two and whole of three wrapped up the series and made it all wonderful. Book one was always good, but it definitely needed epic followers to make it memorable. So, here we are, and I dub it memorable. These books may have been shaky, but at least they found their way. And, unlike some other series that are epic up until the end, thus making me forget them, this series ended so well that when I think of it, all I think of is how epic it was. And we all know that’s not wholly true, but that’s how it works for me, and I’ll always remember this series positively and I’m more than happy about that.

I wonder whether the voices Daniel heard were talking about all the people I’ve lost, or if they were talking about Kiaran. Perhaps he’s my curse. Perhaps I’m his weakness. Together we left the world in ruins.


Okay, what even ARE these books? They start SO strong, then I feel like the side characters kind of take me out of it (I just can’t with the pixie), but then they end where I am suckered right back in. I will admit, upon finishing this last night, that I immediately downloaded book three when before, I had been planning to jump to another series.

It’s true what they say-some epic things happen in this one and it really takes me there with my romantic/effed up peril. So. Ya know. When you’re fifty shades of fucked up and you find something that makes you tick, you kinda tend to stick with it. Like calls to like and all that jazz.

From 70% on I was trash for this book, and it really turned my opinion around concerning a lot of things. So, here we are.

Full review to come.

BOOK REVIEW: The Falconer (The Falconer #1) by Elizabeth May

BOOK REVIEW: The Falconer (The Falconer #1) by Elizabeth MayThe Falconer (The Falconer #1)
by Elizabeth May
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Add to: Goodreads


One girl's nightmare is this girl's faery tale

She's a stunner.
Edinburgh, 1844. Eighteen-year-old Lady Aileana Kameron, the only daughter of the Marquess of Douglas, has everything a girl could dream of: brains, charm, wealth, a title—and drop-dead beauty.

She's a liar.
But Aileana only looks the part of an aristocratic young lady. she's leading a double life: She has a rare ability to sense the sìthíchean—the faery race obsessed with slaughtering humans—and, with the aid of a mysterious mentor, has spent the year since her mother died learning how to kill them.

She's a murderer.
Now Aileana is dedicated to slaying the fae before they take innocent lives. With her knack for inventing ingenious tools and weapons—from flying machines to detonators to lightning pistols—ruthless Aileana has one goal: Destroy the faery who destroyed her mother.

She's a Falconer.
The last in a line of female warriors born with a gift for hunting and killing the fae, Aileana is the sole hope of preventing a powerful faery population from massacring all of humanity. Suddenly, her quest is a lot more complicated. She still longs to avenge her mother's murder—but she'll have to save the world first.

The first volume of a trilogy from an exciting new voice in young adult fantasy, this electrifying thriller combines romance and action, steampunk technology and Scottish lore in a deliciously addictive read.

I focus on the clicks, on mentally reciting my lessons. Propriety. Click. Grace. Click. Smile. Click. Kill. Click.
Hell and blast.

Ya know when you read something and you genuinely want to love it, want to obsess over it, but you just can’t? This is that book-To say I wasn’t obsessed with it at some point would be a gross misrepresentation, as I fell head over heels for Kiaran the minute he traipsed onto my screen and I found it breathed life into an otherwise clunky novel. I started to think about it 24/7, when I could pick it up next, and weeped when my plans fell through and I couldn’t read it as I wanted to.

Gavin studies me intently. “Did you choose this?”
Leaning in close, I press my cheek against his, a touch that goes against every social rule I’ve ever been taught. It’s the excitement of the hunt that courses through me, a savage hum. I’m beyond propriety, beyond etiquette.
“I revel in it.”

But, like all things, I need a strong finish, and an even stronger pull to continue with a series. This book, as it were, is hanging by a thread because I did start book two immediately upon finishing and I did find that book two started way darker [like I like it]. Already, though, I find the darkness slipping a tad (will it stay mildly dark, or go back to the style of book one? Who can tell?).

Time won’t fix me. Time allows me to become more skillful at hiding how much I hurt inside. Time makes me a great liar. Because when it comes to grief, we all like to pretend.

I find so many things palatable with this series-I’m truly enjoying it. But, as I read, I find it hard to grasp onto certain images, ideas, flowing of plot. And this just…it has always messed with my mind, made me wonder if I’m skimming, missing something, or just too damn tired to enjoy any book. As I read The Falconer, I felt as if I was in a fever dream. Never fully in the story, but never not immersed. I cannot possibly fathom how to explain that…but I think it has much to do with Kiaran, and less to do with the plot.

Kiaran surprises me by moving too fast again, shoving my chair back from the table. Then he leans in, his arms on either side of me. “That might have amused me this time, but try it again and I’ll break your pistol.”
I match his stare. “Break my pistol and I have about fifteen other weapons that will do the same job.”
His grin is slow, downright seductive. “I knew it since the day I pulled you out of that river.”
“That you would always challenge me.”

Kiaran is a fae (I love this, I really really love this) who trains our heroine to battle his kind, because the end of the world as they know it is fast approaching. And upon his first appearance, for some inexplicable reason I still cannot name, my heart went erratic. I became utterly obsessed and knew this book had finally hooked me. Call me a sucker, but his snark and attitude just got me.

And one of my favorite tropes has to be the ‘I’m saying something important to you/about you in another language’, which generally leads to the biggest butterfly inducing revelation near the end of a lovers’ perilous battle or situation. I. Am. A. SUCKER. For. IT. And yes, it happened here. Was it the best I’ve read? No. But did it make my heart pitter patter? Yes. That being said, I did spoil it for myself by accident when perusing Goodreads reviews. So take that with a grain of salt.

When did I come to care so much for his opinion of me? I want so badly for him to see me as the huntress and not the lady, never the lady. The nights we hunt are the only times I’ve ever felt on equal terms with a man—even if he isn’t one.

And I never really felt anything in action sequences. Again, is this my fever dream style of reading this poor book, late into the night with dreary eyes, or is it a style of writing I don’t wholly connect with? It seems like everything is there to make a book I’d love, but maybe it just didn’t go there, for me. Maybe it didn’t reach that crescendo of destruction I so crave. Or maybe, just maybe, I’m a daft fool and it was written perfectly and I ruined it all on my own, since it seemed like something interesting was almost always happening. There was also her pixie who, while funny, made me feel like I was reading the movie version of Ella Enchanted or something. No idea where that came from but…it didn’t necessarily bode well.

I feel. I feel. Strong and untouchable and capable. An exquisite glow of joy fills me up and extinguishes my anger. For this instant, I am whole again. I am not broken or empty. The shadow-self inside me that compels me to kill is silent. I am unburdened. I am complete.

So perhaps, in the end, the stakes just didn’t ever feel high enough. They went to battle for their world…and it just didn’t feel like it. I don’t know why. I was tired, read it disjointedly (the most likely candidate here), or it just isn’t a style of writing that gave me a sense of urgency I needed to connect to the final showdown-either way, I didn’t ever feel like it was the end. I don’t know if that’s the author’s fault, or mine.

He looks amused. “No? Then what do
you long for?”
Vengeance is what I desire most, the only thing I’ve craved strongly enough to kill for. After all, it’s the oldest motivation in the entire world. People might think it’s love, or greed, or wealth, but vengeance gives you life. It strengthens you. It makes you burn.

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