- Series: The Kingmaker Chronicles (Book 2)
- Mass Market Paperback: 448 pages
- Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca (January 3, 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 149262604X
- ISBN-13: 978-1492626046
- Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.2 x 6.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (185 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #60,357 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Breath of Fire (The Kingmaker Chronicles) Mass Market Paperback – January 3, 2017
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"Absolutely fabulous. I didn't want to put [Breath of Fire] down. Amanda Bouchet is now on my auto-buy list! I highly recommend her books to my readers and to anyone looking for a great blend of fantasy and romance." - C.L. Wilson, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of The Winter King
"[Bouchet's] novels are easily the most interesting, creative romances I've read all year" - Seattle Book Review
"Breath of Fire is a heart-pounding and joyous romantic adventure that swept me away. Amanda Bouchet's talent is striking." - NALINI SINGH, New York Times bestselling author
"Bouchet sets the bar for high-concept fantasy romance. Simply brilliant." - Kirkus
"[Bouchet's] world-building reaches new heights . . . [a] page-turning addition to the series." - Booklist
"Bouchet ramps up the excitement . . . with high-intensity passion; adrenaline-fueled battles of wits, magic, and might; a host of magical creatures; and enough politics and world-shaking to keep readers eager for the final volume." - Publishers Weekly
"A rising new star in the romantic fantasy genre . . . snap up this series ASAP! (4.5 stars, TOP PICK)" - RT Book Reviews
"Read it and rejoice" - Heroes and Heartbreakers
"Romance readers will love this combo of action and romance . . . phenomenal. TOP PICK" - Night Owl Reviews
"Exciting" - BookPage
About the Author
USA Today bestselling author Amanda Bouchet grew up in New England and studied French at the undergraduate and graduate levels, first at Bowdoin College and then at Bowling Green State University. She moved to Paris, France, in 2001 and has been there ever since. She met her husband while studying abroad, and the family now includes two bilingual children, who will soon be correcting her French. Connect with her at www.amandabouchet.com.
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Top Customer Reviews
As excited as I can be about a series, I'm always wary about a second book, specially one that follows a first that I couldn't love any more. With time and experience, you start trusting the authors and your nerves diminish. But Bouchet is a new author,A Promise of Fire was her debut, so I was worried... well, from now on, I will never doubt her again. To put it simply: I. ADORED. THE. BOOK. In fact, I'm still reeling from it, but I think once this post-amazing-book haze goes away, I will like it more than book one.
There were many things I loved, and in no particular order:
1. Bouchet didn't do the typical second book scheme of separating the main couple. Or of adding a third person to "spice things up". I cannot find the words to express how thankful I am for this. Instead, she focused on making this relationship, so new and still fragile, into one of pure steel. By the end of Breath of Fire, you cannot imagine anything petty separating Cat and Griffin. This, along with the superb writing, is one of the reasons she joins C.L. Wilson as my favorite Fantasy Romance authors.
2. The Heat Level! Book one was sweeter, more tame, which goes perfectly with that Cat, with that moment in their time, with the context of the book. THIS Cat, THIS Griffin, THIS moment required more desperation and hotter sexual levels. And she delivered.
“I will never leave you,” I vow, feeling the magic in my words bind me. “Only death can tear us apart, and even then, I will wait for you at the edges of the Underworld until you come to me again.”
3. The Deux Ex Machina device. I know some people dislike this and I generally do too, but... it's perfect for this trilogy. Bouchet is not trying to be subtle about it. We know Cat has the gods on her side. And Cat knows it too, counts on it. Gods are a fundamental part of this series. It reminds me a little of reading the Iliad where the gods are, honestly, more characters, vital to the story. So instead of finding their use lazy or easy in this book, I found myself breathlessly waiting to see what the gods would do now, how would they help. I Because the key word here is "help". Cat and the Beta Team don't wait sitting on their butts for the gods to save them, they have to do their part, no one will do it for them.
4. The secondary characters. They are not just there to hold Cat and Griffin's hats and tell them how awesome they are. They are real and so very well formed. In this second book, they gain new depths, most specially: Carver (who broke my heart), Jocasta (who is no longer just a sweet, plain princess), Flynn (who is nowhere as happy and easy as in book one), Piers (who I hate with the burning fires of a thousand fires), Selena (who I think is Persephone. That's my theory and I'm sticking to it), and above all... KATO. I cannot begin to tell you how much I love Kato now and the way he broke my heart. After Cat and Griffin, he's officially my new favorite character.
5. The writing and the world-building. Exquisitely done. Bouchet is amazing with action scenes, the description of magical creatures and landscapes is perfectly done. The action is heartstopping and the emotion is so pure, you cannot help but tear up a few times.
6. The way she didn't drag the big secret. The book starts exactly where the first end, and it takes one chapter for things to explode. There was absolutely no need to drag the reveal about Cat and she didn't. I thought this allowed to move things along and to help the chapters mature.
7. And about that... Griffin and Cat, mostly Cat, grow up so much in this book. Beyond the bitterness and past of Cat, there was always a very young thing about her in the first book. In this one, we still see it but we see her believably moving on from it. She stops hiding and she finally assumes who she is and what she's meant to do.
"His faith in me is humbling. It’s sometimes delusional, but not today. Today, I will live, because I am Catalia Fisa, and I do not break."
8. And lastly, the humor, the banter, and what I most loved about book one: the camaraderie.
"Lycheron doesn’t like being outmaneuvered. His lips draw back in a snarl, and he rears, pawing the air. My eyes drop—and widen. “Good Gods, look at the size of his—” Flynn elbows me in the ribs, and I choke back my words. But it’s huge. Huge!"
“There once was a Sintan warlord, who overcame an incredible horde. Even so, he’d be easy to mock, except he has this really huge co—”
In Book One, they took Sinta (yes, I know, Griffin had already taken the throne, but it is in book one where they cement their claim) and they met and fell in love. Book Two brings the taking of Tarva and the consolidation of their relationship. I can barely wait for Book Three and the fall of Fisa. (Don't get me started on how long it'll take for Heart of Fire to come out. I mean, 2018! )
The best about Fantasy Romance is precisely that. It's not a simple romance, but it's not just fantasy either. It's both. And this one is particularly outstanding. I think this quote summarizes perfectly the relationship between Catalia and Griffin:
"His strength amazes me. Honors me. I’m not sickened by his state. I’m impressed. The man I love endures. He is me, and I am him. We are forged of the same passion and violence, and we have hearts of iron."
The book starts with a massive argument between Cat and Griffin where he completely destroys their bedroom, physically assaults her, says he can't take anymore and he walks away. That part was fine. My heart ached for Cat. When she moves back to the barracks to try and hold herself together, he thinks she has run away. Then he storms the room, says it was all a misunderstanding (basically thinks she's stupid for thinking otherwise), she buys it and they have makeup sex. What the heck?
The world-building and background building in this book is mind-numbing!
Plus Cat comes across as whiny and flippant. And she continues to hide key facts from Griffin and just blows it off as a minor fluke. Her POV as the narrator is annoying.
I will update this when and if I finish the book - right now, I just can't waste anymore time on it and will be moving on to another title.
This book is a thorough dissappointment.
Cat’s back in the second installment of the Kingmaker Chronicles and the stakes are higher than ever. A Promise of Fire saw her fighting against her past and falling for the alpha male Griffin who kidnapped her (that’s a whole other conversation). But in order for them to have a peaceful future and achieve Griffin’s vision of a united Thalyria, they must protect their own borders and take out the neighboring royals.
Just another day for Beta Team.
For nearly half of Breath of Fire, I held little interest in the story. It ranged between Griffin freaking out and going all possessive alpha (which I really disliked in the last book) while Cat apologizes and believes herself worthless in comparison, to sex scene, back to relationship struggles, sex, etc. The romance would’ve had more heat if it weren’t for the fact that I think they both need some serious counseling as a couple. Didn’t like it in book 1, still not a fan in this one.
Once the story moved past the back-and-forth, things picked up. While A Promise of Fire brought in the Greek myth laden throughout this world, Breath of Fire lived it. Bouchet brought all the magical creatures out to play, from the (unnamed) Chimaera (though based on the description that’s what I think it was), the Hydra, and even Cerberus makes his return.
Also, I want Cerberus as a pet.
Breath of Fire doesn’t quite strike the same balance of romance and fantasy as the previous installment, starting heavy on the former and shifting in the extreme to the latter. Bouchet sends us into the midst of myths and legends as Cat faces one creature after the next with the gods’ blessings. For the second half of the book, there’s rarely a moment spent where she’s not in danger. But with all that action, the other characters get to shine more.
One comment I had regarding the last book was the fact that I wanted more from the side characters instead of Griffin (yeah, you get it, I don’t like him). Each of the Beta Team members had a stronger role in this book: Kato and Cat working together in the icy labyrinth, Flynn and Jocasta finally starting to share their feelings for each other (it needed to happen sooner or later), Carver’s back story coming out, etc. Even the circus family returned. With all the setting details this time around, I think the story needed to bring out the characters to balance it out.
By the end of Breath of Fire I was firmly hooked and back into the series, eagerly awaiting book #3. The ending reveal wasn’t as hard-hitting as I had hoped but, then again, I felt it a predictable move based on the couple. These books are good but certainly not completely unique when it comes to the romance aspect of the plot. As for the fantasy and adventure, you’ll definitely want to grab a copy as soon as you can. Perfect for fans of Greek mythology and fated destiny.