The Midnight Sea by Kat Ross
(Fourth Element #1)
Publication date: May 10th 2016
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
They are the light against the darkness.
The steel against the necromancy of the Druj.
And they use demons to hunt demons….
Nazafareen lives for revenge. A girl of the isolated Four-Legs Clan, all she knows about the King’s elite Water Dogs is that they bind wicked creatures called daevas to protect the empire from the Undead. But when scouts arrive to recruit young people with the gift, she leaps at the chance to join their ranks. To hunt the monsters that killed her sister.
Scarred by grief, she’s willing to pay any price, even if it requires linking with a daeva named Darius. Human in body, he’s possessed of a terrifying power, one that Nazafareen controls. But the golden cuffs that join them have an unwanted side effect. Each experiences the other’s emotions, and human and daeva start to grow dangerously close.
As they pursue a deadly foe across the arid waste of the Great Salt Plain to the glittering capital of Persepolae, unearthing the secrets of Darius’s past along the way, Nazafareen is forced to question his slavery—and her own loyalty to the empire. But with an ancient evil stirring in the north, and a young conqueror sweeping in from the west, the fate of an entire civilization may be at stake…
After having lost her sister to a Druj, Nazarafeen has always wished there was a way she could make up for not having been able to help or save her sister. So when the Water Dogs ride into her camp looking for someone, anyone willing to be tested, she hardly hesitates before volunteering. Selection means her family will be a lot better off financially but she might never see them again as she must now go to be trained in the service of the Satrap bonded to a Daeva, cousins to the Druj, to fight against the Druj.
The Daeva (think Djinn) can wield elemental magic which can be unleashed on the wish of their bonded Water Dogs. The special cuff given to both the Daeva and the Water Dog at their bonding creates a bond which allows the Water Dogs to gain access and control the elemental powers wielded by their Daevas. This bond is like a chain on the Daevas who are slaves, not even allowed to reproduce without control; where once they were revered as Gods, they are now demonised.
I really enjoyed this first book in the Fourth Element series. It has a bit of everything; a good plot, fast-paced, action-packed, elemental magic and flawed characters. The world building is phenomenal and detailed. There was never a feeling of something missing, The characters are well drawn, interesting, relatable and most importantly, memorable.
I also really loved the magic system. I love the idea of elemental magic and the author does a good job in making sure that while powerful, it doesn’t come without a price. I’m left really curious about the real story behind the Daevas and about Nazarafeen’s true capabilities.
The Midnight Sea has everything I enjoy in a fantasy and more and it was compelling enough to awaken my interest and hold it throughout. It also left me eagerly anticipating the sequel. I highly recommend it for readers who love elemental magic, kick-ass heroines and a captivating story.
Kat Ross worked as a journalist at the United Nations for ten years before happily falling back into what she likes best: making stuff up. She lives in Westchester with her kid and a few sleepy cats. Kat is also the author of the dystopian thriller Some Fine Day (Skyscape, 2014), about a world where the sea levels have risen sixty meters. She loves magic, monsters and doomsday scenarios. Preferably with mutants.
Tour-wide giveaway (INTL)
• $30 Amazon gift card
ends May 26th