Crowns of Nyaxia Duet by Carissa Broadbent
Second book: April 14, 2023
Review by Jen
If you’re a reader of fantasy romance, this duet is definitely for you! I couldn’t wait to read these two books every day and night. They’re SOOO good! Fans of ACOTAR, Blood and Ash, Red Queen and yes…even Hunger Games (with some added spice!) will love it.
Oraya is a human young woman. She has been raised by the vampire king, Vincent, since she was a small child. This is just unheard of, and Vincent protects her at all costs. She lives in a bubble in a castle with very little interaction with anyone. Because, well, she’s food to all the vampires in Vincent’s life. To Oraya, Vincent is her father. And he’s training her to compete in a legendary contest where the winner gets one wish granted from a goddess. With that one wish, she will ask to be binded to Vincent and share his powers, making her less weak in the kingdom.
Competitors are the best of the best, the most violent, bloodthirsty vampires from all three vampire houses. Soooo….it’s a VERY tough thing to win! Good luck little human.
Then we have Raihn. He’s entered the contest with his own pressing need to win. Raihn is a Turned vampire. In this world, Turned vampires are rare because they often die during the Turning process. Raihn knows who Oraya is, and knows Vincent and hates him. Early on he tries to protect Oraya and they unofficially form a light alliance. There’s one challenge in the contest that requires team work and they, along with Raihn’s other vampire friend, become a team. As a team, they’re unbeatable. It’s close, harrowing even, lots of near death moments and gore.
During their training as a team, Raihn and Oraya become friends. Friends who want to jump each others’ bones and still don’t exactly trust each other. Raihn seems nice, sincere, still has some of his humanity. He’s incredibly strong and devastatingly handsome. But there’s something about him that stops Oraya from giving him 100% of herself. She’s always been careful around vampires. Again, she’s their FOOD.
The contest is full of heart stopping moments, literally their hearts stopped. As did mine. There’s mystery, what does Raihn really want? Who is Vincent to Oraya? What is he hiding? Each vampire house has its own unique magic and weaknesses. The author did a great job setting them up to differentiate what motivates each house separately. And the evil characters work up to their evilness. A slow build, like a simmering kettle that eventually boils over in a HUGE way.
Oraya and Raihn. Enemies to lovers to enemies. They’re a beautifully written strong couple, each with their own secrets and pain. I’m still so conflicted over Vincent, too. Which is insane given what you learn about him.
I could not put these books down. It has all the action and adventure of Hunger Games, the world building in my favorite fantasy books and the romance that I adored from ACOTAR and Blood and Ash. Raihn is strong, smart, funny, charming, and once he’s in with Oraya, he’s completely devoted and fiercely protective of her. And Oraya, what a bad ass! Her confidence, leadership, intelligence and humor won me over immediately. It’s a slow burn romance, that I loved. And, the plot was even better than the romance. That’s saying something. I finished the first book in the wee hours of the morning and one clicked book two asap.
Sounds like a great read – buying it right now.
I’ve really been enjoying Carissa Broadbent’s books lately. I was slightly dissappointed at the ending – but that’s just me. If you haven’t read these related books already, Six Scorched Roses is about Vale (the general) and Slaying the Vampire Conqueror relates to a story mentioned by Septimus, these were both really good also.