The Soulbound Curse (The Amüli Chronicles: Soulbound, Book One) by Kira A. McFadden is told from the perspectives of several protagonists. This epic fantasy explores themes of grief, discrimination, determination, greed and betrayal. The story starts with Eti, an ekrim who's seeking the vessel for the ekra's deity Ilanderi-karais, before the Amüli people use it for their goddess instead and destroy the ekra once and for all. His arrival at Kravaldîn, an Amüli city, leads us to another protagonist named Clae. In the story's well-written, multifaceted plot, Clae's struggles as a half-blood Amüli and his desperation in finding his Soulbound before his 16th birthday stood out compared to the others－his storyline is the highlight of the novel for me.
The world building is fascinating and intricate, particularly with its history, magic system, as well as the unique types of races and beings that roam the world of Inrugia. The narrative and dialogue are engaging and evocative. The alternating focus on Clae, Eti, Clae's cousin Marik and other characters adds more depth to the story and makes the flow of the plot more cohesive. On the other hand, I didn't expect the human world to be a modern, present one and was ambivalent about this aspect at first. Nevertheless, I immensely enjoyed The Soulbound Curse. It was difficult for me to leave its fascinating, complex characters and intriguing world. On the whole, this is a great read from McFadden and I'm eager to find out how Clae and Eti will cope with their struggles in the next book.