Title: The Alchemists of Loom
Genre: Dark Fantasy
Author: Elise Kova
Her vengeance. His vision.
Ari lost everything she once loved when the Five Guilds’ resistance fell to the Dragon King. Now, she uses her unparalleled gift for clockwork machinery in tandem with notoriously unscrupulous morals to contribute to a thriving underground organ market. There isn’t a place on Loom that is secure from the engineer-turned-thief, and her magical talents are sold to the highest bidder as long as the job defies their Dragon oppressors.
Cvareh would do anything to see his sister usurp the Dragon King and sit on the throne. His family’s house has endured the shame of being the lowest rung in the Dragons’ society for far too long. The Alchemist Guild, down on Loom, may just hold the key to putting his kin in power, if Cvareh can get to them before the Dragon King’s assassins.
When Ari stumbles upon a wounded Cvareh, she sees an opportunity to slaughter an enemy and make a profit off his corpse. But the Dragon sees an opportunity to navigate Loom with the best person to get him where he wants to go.
He offers her the one thing Ari can’t refuse: A wish of her greatest desire, if she brings him to the Alchemists of Loom.
Reviewed by:??David Wiley
Wow, this book blew me away and took me on a thrilling adventure with some memorable characters. This was my first book of Elise Kova???s, but I can promise it will not be the last of her books that I read. My biggest objection, upon finishing the book, was that the next book was not available yet!
I love books with dragons in them, and I love it even more when an author does something nontraditional with them. It was why Rachel Hartman???s??Seraphinastruck a chord with me, and why this book does the same thing. It has dragons, but not in the way you would ever expect. It is interesting how separate the dragon society is from those operating on Loom, yet how critical they are to the magic and technology on Loom. Two thumbs up based solely on the usage of dragons in this book.
Yet the real show-stoppers are the characters in the book. The three major characters, Cvareh, Ari, and Florence, work in a wonderful dynamic with each other that somehow finds some great synergy. Each of them has parts of their past they would like to forget or hide, or some aspect of their goals and desires that remain hidden from the others. Cvareh and Ari can barely get through a conversation without threatening to tear each other apart. And that is half of the fun, seeing the banter and interplay between those three characters as they are swooped in unexpected directions by their quest.
The biggest disappointment, if I had to pin one down, was the ending. It promises much to come in the next book, yet therein is the problem: it builds things up for the next book. It is certainly not something that you would want to pick up if you prefer books to tie everything up in nice, neat, perfectly resolved packages. But for me, that just intensifies the desire to get my hands on the next book.
The steampunk-esque fantasy world that Kova created is beyond description. To do it justice, I would have to go into such depth that it would inevitably allow spoilers to creep in. Needless to say, you will get swept up in this world on an adventure you???ll not forget with these characters. This should be on EVERY Fantasy/Sci-Fi/Steampunk/YA reader???s wish list for 2017. Don???t miss out on this one, I imagine many people will be talking about this book all year long.