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Monday, November 26, 2012

Review & Giveaway: Bodyguards by Kallysten

Title: Bodyguards
Series: Quicksilver Codex #1
Author: Kallysten
Tour: No
Published: November 2012
Format: Ebook provided by author for review

On the verge of her twentieth birthday, Vivien’s worries are those of a typical young woman: doing well in college, gaining more independence, and maybe managing to show Brad, her classmate and sometimes jogging partner, that she wouldn’t mind taking their burgeoning relationship to a different level.

Everything changes in the blink of an eye. Vivien stumbles into a knife fight, watches a man die in front of her, and soon listens, stunned, as Brad and his brother Aedan tell her a story of magic, vampires and a murderous ruler intent on killing a princess in hiding – a tale in which she is the princess and heir to a realm she didn’t know existed.

Vivien’s first instinct is to refuse to believe this incredible tale, even if it comes from a man she is attracted to. But when her self-proclaimed bodyguards use magic to take her to a different world, the edges of reality start blurring and Vivien has to figure out who she truly is.

This is my first book from author Kallysten and I’ve been totally blown away. I really loved Bodyguards. Bodyguards tells the story of a 19 year old woman, weeks shy of her twentieth birthday. Her name is Vivien. And her whole life is about to change.

Right away the book starts on an eerie note – a nightmare. Something about getting this type of an insight to a characters mind always makes me empathize with them a bit more. Dreams are pretty intimate, and when they are nightmares you really get to get a peak at what can really drive a person. The whole first chapter is just filled with this foreboding aura, and it had me flipping pages as quick as I could.

But its not all doom and gloom. There’s a love interest here by the name of Brad. And Vivien has a crush on him. And she gets the courage to ask him out. And Brad denies her. I really had to laugh at Vivien’s reaction when he turned her down. I would have (sadly) reacted the same way. The fact that I could see a bit of myself in Vivien really endeared me to her a bit more.

As the blurb says, Vivien witnesses a knife fight, and then learns the truth about Brad – and his twin brother Aedan. They are sworn by oath to be her bodyguards, and she is a princess. Then they take her to Foh’Ran, an alternate world. I really am not a “portal” person. I don’t go for the swirling mist, the rippled circle, whatever it is that characters use to jump from one world to another. But Kallysten may change my stance on that. There’s not all kinds of focus on the actual portal, which is something I am grateful for. And the other world of Foh’Ran, although it may not be as modern, is certainly an interesting world. It is full of beauty, and for lack of a better word, magic. Although its residents would scoff, and insist you call it what it is – The Quickening. There are vampires and channelers, Quickening shields and castles. And this is where Vivien really learns more about herself, and how she is descended from Foh’Ran royalty.

A bit about Brad, cause I love a leading man. He’s everything a leading woman dreams of, aside from available. Brad has a thing about being “proper” and as it annoyed Vivien, it annoyed me. But luckily for us all, Brad is not all brawn – he definitely has brains. And ladies, keep an eye out for him. At one point he makes a speech to Vivien that made me stop breathing and pant at the same time. Killed me and repaired me all at once. And I am more than sure it had the same effect on Vivien.

One character who I thought was infinitely interesting was Aedan. Aedan, whose life took an entirely different turn than his brother, has some obvious issues he should work out. But I really want to know his back story in more depth. I found him to be so intriguing and… barely harnessed. I won’t blow any secrets about him, but suffice it to say I thought he was fascinating. And as I like to harass authors, I might have to see if I can pry any information to see if Aedan will be featured more prominently in the future. There is also the matter of a woman named Ciara, whom definitely needs more face time with the readers in the future!

I really enjoyed this story. I can’t wait for the rest of the series to be released. The characters and the world were captivating. And there is a beautiful first kiss, one befitting a princes – or any girl who has given her heart away. I am a sucker for a good kiss, and Vivien’s definitely lived up to my hopes.

I just finished the book this afternoon, so I have not yet researched (read: stalked Kallysten’s website) to see what’s in store, but I know I definitely will be in line when the next book in the Quicksilver Codex is released.

And guess what!  Kallysten is offering a giveaway of Bodyguards to one lucky reader!  Just fill out the Rafflecopter below, and good luck!  Giveaway is International and ends 11-30-12

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