The Revelation of Light and Dark by Sawyer Bennett
Chronicles of the Stone Veil #1
Romantic Fantasy/Urban Fantasy
February 9, 2021
Reviewed by Jen
Some of my favorite reads over the past several months have been in the fantasy category. The cover for The Revelation of Light and Dark by Sawyer Bennett has the same vibe as the Ash and Blood series and ACOTAR. Of course, I was in.
First up- here’s your warning, each book ends on a cliffhanger. Big cliffhangers. BUT, the first three books are out and book four is being released on 4/13. There are five books total.
The story takes place in Seattle. Finley is a naturally pretty, unpretentious coffee shop manager in her late 20’s. Her mom died in childbirth and her dad died by suicide years ago. She didn’t finish college, lives in her childhood home with her three roommates, has a twin sister named Fallon and despite the tragedies in her life, she’s generally a happy person. Finley was very close with her dad and isn’t so close to her sister. She LOVES her coffee shop and has a nice easy existence with her roommates, who are also her BFFs.
There’s one weird thing about Finley.
She had a lot of odd visions growing up. Finley would see and feel things others couldn’t. Things like monsters. She told her dad and was sent to therapy. The doctors suggested medicine, and while she tried it, it ended up dulling her senses and not being good for her life. Finley quietly quit her meds and learned how to “not see” the monsters and ignore the dark or light vibrations around certain people.
Fallon is wealthy, educated, owns a fancy art gallery and has a snooty fiancé. She invites Finley to an art show. She really wants to fix Finley up on a date. Fallon glams Finley up for the event and she looks fabulous. All is going well at the gallery and then Carrick appears. Carrick is super rich, impossibly gorgeous, and THE most eligible bachelor in all of the land (Land = Seattle).
As soon as Carrick sees Finley, he is instantly put out and angry. They lock eyes and Finley can’t figure out why he goes from being the life of the party to completely sour. Then, her sister drags her over to meet Carrick and he ignores her and excuses himself to leave the party. Finley is baffled, as she’s never seen Carrick before, but shakes it off and leaves soon, too.
Finley’s boss, the owner of the coffee shop, decides to leave the business and wants to sell it to Finley. She doesn’t have anywhere near the cash to make this purchase happen and turns to her sister for advice. Fallon helps her apply for investor support from a company that helps start-ups. They rock it and Finley is called in for an interview with the firm.
Finley is absolutely prepared. She’s in the zone. While waiting in the lobby of the firm’s office, who struts out? Carrick. She is stunned and hopes he doesn’t see her. No such luck. He sees her and stalks on over. It’s strange, she doesn’t get it, I don’t it. She’s very polite, but he’s mean, confusing, and stalks on out. Hmmm…what is his deal? The man who is interviewing her, collects her from the lobby and Finley learns that the firm is actually Carrick’s. He owns it. Despite the curveball, she’s smooth and smart, until…. Carrick decides to sit in on the interview. Immediately she’s full of anxiety, her confidence is blown and when she looks at the guy who is interviewing her, she sees a monster. WTF?! She can’t continue and runs out of the interview.
I’m going to share highlights of what happens over the course of the three books I’ve read so far. No big spoilers, just good teasing! Strap in. Carrick finds Finley and reveals that she has a gift that allows her to see beyond the glamour that Daemons and Fae use in the human world. She can sense and see their true forms. She was never really impaired as her family and doctors thought, she can really see what looks like monsters. Carrick describes himself as a servant of the Gods. Yeah…umm…that’s still a bit vague, right? In reality, he’s something MUCH more interesting. I won’t say. But, he’s a pretty big deal and regularly meets with the Gods.
What follows is the revelation of a mysterious prophecy that could end the world if Finley doesn’t step up to save it. There’s also a lot of work by a set of interesting friends and acquaintances to specifically avoid sharing with Finley what Carrick really is. Toss in a few murders, major fires, magical powers, a sister with a huge secret, a couple trips to Faere, a drink in the underworld, angels, crazy sex rituals, and one helluva a big connection between Carrick and Finley. OMG… like Outlander type epic.
This series reminds me a little of the early books in Moning’s Fever Series, which is one of my all-time favorite urban fantasies. The first book is a little bumpy at first, but ramps up quickly. The romance is a slow delicious burn that finally fully delivers (ahem…multiple times) and I love it.
Grade A (books 1-3)