Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Lichgates (Review) (Giveaway)

*Today is my spot on the Lichgates tour! Below I've shared my thoughts on this captivating YA fantasy novel and at the end of this post is an awesome giveaway!*

*Hosted by: Xpresso Book Tours*

(The Grimoire Saga, #1)

Release Date: October 15th, 2011
Genres: YA Fantasy Romance

My Review: (4/5 stars*)

Lichgates opens to a world of magic, adventure, terrifying creatures, and a beautiful imagination. As most fantasy-based novels go this one takes an entertaining plunge. You take in the created world right along with the main characters Kara—a twenty-year-old human—and through Braeden whose a different species altogether. The viewpoints are very different and that contrast shares with readers the motivations behind the two character's actions which would be hard to decipher through just one POV. The first half is slow to begin but it does take off mid-point with action and plot propulsion.

Kara is a survivor whether she believes it or not, she's tenacious, and slips into the role of the Vagabond—legendary grimoire keeper and magic wielder—much easier than she thought possible. Braeden is secretive, single-minded in his pursuit of freedom, and one of the first people to show kindness to Kara. In many ways they are alike because they come from terrible pasts and all that's left is the purpose they are given. I kept holding my breath for the moment of deception from some of the characters that seem like they would betray Kara. The doubt that's planted is always a fun aspect while reading because you can never be sure of who to trust, and that's also what the reader and characters struggle with.

I found the idea of the heroine discovering the grimoire and realizing she can't walk away from the responsibility of it completely renewing. Kara is literally stuck with the powers of this magical book and she has no other choice but to learn it for her survival, and to help reunite Ourea's kingdoms so that she could someday return home without having to look over her shoulder. Another aspect I liked was that Kara is twenty, not a teenager, nor an adult, but fairly mature. Usually you won't find a YA with older aged characters, and I thought that was pretty cool considering I'm in my twenties.

Kara Magari goes out hiking in the Rocky Mountains and stumbles across a lichgate portal that brings her into a whole new world—Ourea. It's dangerous and inhabited by many deadly creatures. Stranded in this bizarre world she falls into an ancient underground library and finds a grimoire that turns her into a mystical Vagabond that gives her magical powers, and a destiny she didn't ask for. The new abilities she acquires doesn't come with a return policy but does make her valuable to all the power-hungry individuals of Ourea and its kingdoms. They will stop at nothing to hunt her down and control her abilities. It's up to Kara to learn how to fight back and stop the war that's been waged for ages and has divided its people. As much as I liked the story and characters a few things bugged me. The first being that it took awhile to really get invested, and I did want to but it took awhile. The second thing is that as much as the world is well-described there are scenes that I couldn't clearly visualize. Lastly, the writing is good but there could be room for improvement.

All in all Lichgates transports you to the fantastical world of Ourea and it's a perilous undertaking. It has a cornucopia of magic, monsters, and mayhem in that very order. I loved the world-building a great deal and Kara and Braeden's journey is engaging with a deluge of obstacles. If you're looking for an unusual thrilling fantasy series you've picked up the right book. The Grimoire Saga is one I'll be continuing since I haven't gotten enough of the characters and the expansive world.


Fans of The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and Eragon will enjoy this contemporary remix of the classic epic fantasy genre.

Kara Magari is about to discover a beautiful world full of terrifying things—Ourea.

Kara, a college student still reeling from her mother’s recent death, has no idea the hidden world of Ourea even exists until a freak storm traps her in a sunken library. With no way out, she opens an ancient book of magic called the Grimoire and unwittingly becomes its master, which means Kara now wields the cursed book’s untamed power. Discovered by Ourea's royalty, she becomes an unwilling pawn in a generations-old conflict—a war intensified by her arrival. In this world of chilling creatures and betrayal, Kara shouldn’t trust anyone… but she’s being hunted and can’t survive on her own. She drops her guard when Braeden, a native soldier with a dark secret, vows to keep her safe. And though she doesn’t know it, her growing attraction to him may just be her undoing.

For twelve years, Braeden Drakonin has lived a lie. The Grimoire is his one chance at redemption, and it lands in his lap when Kara Magari comes into his life. Though he begins to care for this human girl, there is something he wants more. He wants the Grimoire.

Welcome to Ourea, where only the cunning survive.



~Author Bio~
S.M. Boyce

International Amazon Bestseller. Fantasy Author. Twitter addict. Book Blogger. Geek. Sarcastic. Gooey. Odd. Author of the action-packed Grimoire Saga.

S.M. Boyce is a novelist who loves ghosts, magic, and spooky things. She prefers loose-leaf tea, reads far too many books, and is always cold. She’s married to her soul mate and couldn’t be happier. Her B.A. in Creative Writing qualifies her to serve you french fries.

Boyce likes to update her blog a few times each week so that you have something to wake you up in the morning.






  1. Thanks for having me! Great review, and thanks for posting it to Amazon as well.

    1. I really enjoyed your story, and you're welcome :)

      Thanks for stopping by!


  2. Wonderful review, Seirra! It sounds like a great fantasy read and one with a lot of character development, too. Kara sounds like an amazon protagonist and one I would definitely be able to root for!

    1. Thanks for letting me host Giselle! Amazon protagonist, I like that, yes, Kara is someone you root for. :-)

      I appreciate you leaving a comment!

      Happy Holidays!!



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