Of Silver and Beasts (Goddess Wars #1)
by Trisha Wolfe
Published: April 18, 2013
In the sand-covered queendom of Cavan, the goddess once saved a young Kaliope’s life, preventing the mercury her father attempted to hide in her blood from reaching her heart. Now, a cybernetic clamp filters it, but the silver streaks swirling faintly beneath her skin are a constant reminder that she’s different.
When nineteen-year-old Kaliope is chosen as head of the Nactue Guard, she becomes the sworn protector to her empress. In the midst of an invasion on a neighboring land, Kaliope is placed in charge of guarding Prince Caben, the last heir to his kingdom. But when they’re attacked by the feared Otherworlders, Caben and Kaliope are abducted and taken below to a realm where they must fight for their life in a caged arena.
Kaliope struggles to protect her princely charge, keeping him and herself alive while battling inhumanly opponents, and trying to save the stolen, sacred relic that will restore her empress’s life force and all of Cavan. And if she can somehow awaken the goddess within her, she may save what’s most important.
New Adult Dark Fantasy: Intended for readers 17 years of age and older.
My Thoughts: Of Silver and Beasts is a New Adult Dark Fantasy that is set in the world of Cavan, one of the three realms. It is a society in which the women rule and are considered the protectors. Kaliope has trained since she was young to be a protector and has been chosen to be head of the Nactue Guard, the highest honor, because the Nactue Guard are the direct protectors of the Empress herself. Kaliope has a secret, one which she desperately wants to keep hidden. When she was young, in an attempt to hide stolen mercury, the most treasured element, Kailope's father injected it into her blood stream. Her mother prayed to Alyah to save Kalilope, and she wound up having a clamp or cybernetic device installed to filter the mercury away from her heart. At certain times, however, it becomes visible, swirling under her skin. She also has special abilities, such as increased strength, as a result of this. Her mother told her that it was gift from the goddess herself, but Kaliope feels like it is a curse.
Shortly after Kaliope enters the Nactue Guard, and even before their training is complete, she is charged by the Empress herself with protecting Prince Caban, the only living heir to their neighboring kingdom. He is in their charge after an attack on his kingdom by the Otherworlders, a sect of beastly people that have not been heard of in over 100 years. Prince Caban turns out to be quite a challenge for Kaliope, testing her resolve with his headstrong attitude and stubbornness. He is also quite the hottie. When the Otherworlders invade the kingdom of Cavan, Kaliope and Prince Caban join in the fight, and wind up being captured and taken to the realm where the Otherworlders dwell. Forced to cage fight or die, Kaliope and Caban are faced with life threatening battles and challenges, the most difficult of all may be the one Kaliope faces within herself as the feelings she has for Caban go beyond that of a protector.
I really enjoyed Of Silver and Beasts. Trisha Wolfe has painted a fantasy world with her words that is imaginative, amazing, and creative, centered around a queendom, with mythological elements, as well as science fiction and dark fantasy. I enjoyed getting to know Kaliope's character, and I really came to love Prince Caban. I especially liked the romance that developed between these two. Prince Caban is full of surprises, and is quite swoon-worthy. There are some really intense battle scenes, as well as a really steamy moment or two. Trisha Wolfe has done an excellent job intricately weaving the details of this highly imaginative world into the story, and boy does she blow you away with the ending. OMG, I want the next book now. Yes, it is a cliffhanger, and I am so wanting things to work out. You'll have to read the book to know what those "things" are, but the ending is quite epic. If you are a fan of science fiction, fantasy, and romance, then this new adult dark fantasy is something you would enjoy.
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The cool sensation of the fresh water on my skin helps me forget my nerves and I lie back, floating just below the top of the water. My body dulls, the cold soothing my sore muscles, and I welcome the numbness. The ceiling of the cave is sprinkled with tiny clusters of white lights, dotting the canopy above our heads like stars in the sky. I feel as if I’m sitting on the rooftop of my apartment, staring at the night sky, not here in the Otherworld, awaiting my death.
The water rolls, rocking my body, and I glance over as Caben floats up beside me. He’s on his back also, and points to the lights dusting the cave ceiling.
“Diamonds,” he says.
“Really?” I don’t know much about any minerals other than mercury. And somehow, diamonds as our stars makes my chest heavy. It’s too beautiful. “How can you tell?”
“The ultraviolet light shows the impurities,” he says. “The imperfections actually absorb the dark light, causing the diamond to emit a visible glow.” He chuckles. “A very expensive lighting effect.”
I laugh. “Quite expensive.” They twinkle as they reflect the rippling water. “But almost more heavenly than the stars.” I lower my voice at the end, hoping he didn’t hear my spoken thoughts.
Caben doesn’t speak, and the trickling of the stream and lap of the pool becomes the only sound as we float in compatible silence. I could drift off, fall asleep in this peaceful place, but I know we still have a mission to complete before the Reckoning.
This thought awakens me, and I touch my feet to the bottom of the pool and begin to wade toward the edge.
I hear Caben’s heavy groan. “No you don’t,” he says, and captures the bottom of my tunic. He tugs me through the water, back to the pool’s center. “Not yet. This could be our last reprieve, and I plan for us to enjoy it.”
As I turn to face him, his fingers slip from my shirt to my waist, grazing my stomach. My skin prickles, and I shiver, matching the trembling water around us. His deep blue eyes meet mine, and he swallows, his Adam’s apple working. Slowly, he begins to inch up my tunic—
“Wait.” I place my hand on top of his.
He cranes an eyebrow. “It should really have time to dry before we go back.”
Logically, that makes sense. But the heated look he’s giving me says so much more. And regardless of the attraction I may feel for the prince—a woman would have to be blind—and whether or not we actually escape this hell ... what then? We share an intimate moment once, and go back to our stations in life, simply pretending nothing happened?
Or maybe I’m reading too much into his gaze. He’s a man, and physical desire is self-serving. He may die ... and he probably wants to bed a woman one last time. Everything about his character screams he’s not one who thinks past the moment.
I could lose myself for now, give in to the pulse quickening my blood with need, but I’ve never shown a man the clamp over my heart. It would have to be something I did for a different reason if I ever chose to do so. Not merely because I may die soon.
As I push his hand away and start to swim off, he grasps my waist, encircling his firm arms around my stomach, and pulls my back to his chest.
“Don’t run from me,” he breathes into my ear. “I’m not asking for anything. Not even whatever it is you’re hiding. Just stay here.”
Help Trisha and the Tuff Girl Legion get to 50 reviews on Amazon to read this full scene from Caben’s POV! Scene will release on Trisha’s blog. You can bookmark the bonus material here!
About Trisha Wolfe
I’m the author of the YA Steampunk DESTINY'S FIRE (Omnific Publishing), ASTARTE'S WRATH NA Historical/Supernatural, and the upcoming YA Utopian FIREBLOOD from Spencer Hill Press, October 2013. My NA Dark Fantasy OF SILVER AND BEASTS available May 2013.
I’m the creator of YA Bound, a promotional site for the Young Adult genre. Also a member of SCWW and The Apocalypsies.
A proud business owner, I'm partnered with my partner, my husband. When I’m not busy doing all of the above, I’m a wife and the mother of a gorgeous teen boy who's the sounding board for my male characters.
Check out the rest of this website for more on my books and bonus material. Follow me on Twitter @TrishWolfe
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