“Forever is meaningless if you must spend it without the one you love.”Lira
Let me start by telling you all that this book has caused me a major reading hangover. It is book #2 in the Frozen Sun Sage, but it read so well as a stand alone as well. When I picked it up, I didn’t realize that it was part of a series and Jill Criswell’s writing was able to beautifully fill in the world building from the first book, Beasts of the Frozen Sun, without leaving me behind.
(Taken from Black Stone Publishing)
Lira and Reyker have lost everything. Including each other.
Lira of Stone watched her home burn and her clan fall beneath the sword of the warlord known as the Dragon. She believes the man she loves, a warrior who defected from the Dragon’s army, is dead. Alongside her exiled brother and his band of refugees, she will fight the forces that conquered her island. But the greatest danger may come from Lira herself—with the blood of banished gods running through her veins, she’s become a weapon, and no one is safe from the power of her wrath.
Reyker Lagorsson thought he was done being a Dragonman. That was before he saw Lira leap from a cliff and vanish into the sea. Determined to honor her memory by protecting her people, Reyker must feign loyalty to the warlord, undermine him at every turn, and seek alliances with renegade soldiers—without succumbing to the battle-madness that threatens to possess him once more.
When the Fallen Ones offer Lira a chance to defeat the Dragon, her quest leads her to a place she never expected—Iseneld, the warlord’s homeland. Her journey into the heart of the Frozen Sun will put her on a collision course with Reyker, costing both of them more than they ever imagined, and leaving her with a terrible choice: to save their countries, she must forsake everything she loves.
I was absolutely enraptured by this book. It only took me a few pages to be invested in the story and from that point forward I read every chance I could. Jill Criswell’s story telling ability was such a pleasure to read. She wrote the characters beautifully and with a delicate complexity. Every character was filled with a sense of good and evil and a desire for love. These characters are what brought the story to life.
Another part of Kingdom of Ice and Bone that I loved was the unique world building and ties to some mythological aspects. Iseneld, where Reyker is from and Lira ends up, was such a beautiful and complex place. There were seers, Gods of all kinds, and skrikflaks (giant rams with ancient powers). The world building was so well put together that nothing seemed to stand out in a way that was jarring or unexpected, but rather in a way that made sense and was appealing.
Kingdom of Ice and Bone is a tale of adventure, duty, and the power of love. The ending tore me apart but it was so worth it to have traveled with Lira and Reyker until that point.