Member Reviews

I enjoyed this book. Not as much as I hyped it up for, but enough to keep flipping the pages. Hopefully this series doesn't let me down as this book started strong but kinda fell just a little after the first half. Again nothing to make me stop reading.

The magic system was decently done. The povs were all done well and the politics wasn't a bore.

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We follow Jax, Callyn, and Tycho, from the previous trilogy. Jax, son to a blacksmith and his best friend/neighbor Callyn, Bakery owner, are drowning in tax debt. So when someone asks them to pass along a message in exchange for silver they do it. Meanwhile, Tycho is running back and forth between kingdoms as a messenger for the king. He stumbles on the two friends and the person looking for the message. Suddenly, their lives are all tangled up.

It was everything I wanted: fast paced, interesting new characters, cameos from beloved old characters, just the right amount of drama and intrigue, and a super cute romance. I will be eagerly awaiting book 2.

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I was really excited to try this book out. I have not read the Cursebreaker series, and figured with another series set in the same world there would be some spoilers, but it would be alright. Right? Unfortunately not. This book really acts as more of a continuation of the Cursebreaker series, rather than a standalone series, in my opinion. Typically, I love seeing book series set in the same world, but focused on a different storyline, where past characters make appearances. I was kind of bummed that when past characters appeared in this book, you were already expected to know their back story and relationships.

The first third of this book, I really liked. I felt like we got a good view of Briarlock, the characters specific to this series, and what the current political situation was. The middle of the book was pretty slow and lost me for a while. I felt like you needed to know more about Tycho and the other characters in the capital to really sell everything that was happening. The Briarlock characters didn't seem to have as much development, as they stayed the course. The biggest change was in their relationship to each other. For a while, I didn't pick this book up, because as a new reader in this world, I felt like I wasn't getting the worldbuilding and background I needed to be fully in it. The last third of the book did a good job building the action and wrapping up a lot of loose ends. The ending felt kind of predictable, but satisfying.

Overall, I thought this book was ok. I'll definitely recommend it to anyone who read and enjoyed the Cursebreaker series, but wouldn't recommend it on it's own.

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It was so much fun coming back to the worlds of Emberfall and Shyl Shallow!!

Grey and Lia Mara serve as the rulers, and they have a lovely little daughter which should make for a perfect "Happily Ever After". However, all is NOT well due to much of Shyl Shallow's mistrust of magic - specifically, Grey's magic. The struggling-to-get-by Jax and Callyn are two of them, and when a pair of mysterious strangers show up, offering money to keep letters (which they suspect are full of treason), they accept. Despite the ominousness of the situation, they desparately need the money, and much like everyone else, they really don't like magic anyways. And Crystal Castle is so far away, how will the royal family ever know?

Tycho, loyal as ever to Grey, serves as the King's Courier - a messenger between Shyl Shallow and Emberfall. His long days with no one but his horse have made him a little wary of social situations, however, making him a bit of a loner. One night, when his horse throws a shoe, he comes across a little town with secrets, and it is then and there that lives begin to change, with mistakes, regrets, and magic persisting throughout.

Honestly speaking, my favorite character was Tycho, and I was so excited to see him again! He's a mix of Grey's loner tendencies and fighting/magic abilities, but as well as Rhen's more natural and comparatively "friendly" nature. I love how he's the midpoint between Grey's and Rhen's stark personalities, which helps highlight some important notes - though he definitely cannot keep his emotions under control like either brother. In the previous books, Rhen was the fear-filled, angry character, but now, it's the opposite: Grey has much more to lose. Instead, Rhen has turned into a man who's learned from his mistakes and spouts wisdom (and politically tricky words, I suppose), and it was an interesting dynamic, seeing how fear can change a person. It was a stunning transformation, and though I still love Grey and Lia Mara, I don't hate Rhen anymore either. (And Harper too, I suppose, but the girls were always a little different - I think I'll love them both unconditionally. But I do love seeing how light and carefree Harper is now.)

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Confession time: Even though I own the Cursebreakers Trilogy in ebook format, I haven’t had a chance to read it yet (I know, I know), so I went into this book knowing it was a spinoff of that universe and it would help if I read that series first. I simply didn’t have time but felt confident I could probably pick up the threads pretty quickly like I did with Bardugo’s Six of Crows duology. Thankfully, I was right. It was pretty easy to pick up the threads and I’m so glad. I’d have hated to have had to wait to sit down and read Cursebreakers (I still plan on reading it! I’m just short on time right now!) before I read this book.

It’s such a good book! Easily one of the best fantasy reads I’ve come across this year. It doesn’t come quite as close to the level of enjoyment I found in reading Laura Sebastian’s “Castles in Their Bones”, but it’s not that far behind (Don’t hit me with SJM’s latest release–I have it but haven’t had the time to touch that behemoth either!). I love the LGBTQ and disabled representation up front and center. I love the found family aspect (frankly, I’m loving this wave of found family in YA fiction overall that we’ve been seeing over the past few years, which I could probably write a whole essay on).

From the start I was really digging the none-too-subtle parallels between the set-up for this book and the events of the January 6th attempted insurrection here in the US. The notion of the “Truthbringers” taking advantage of poor and rural communities and their ignorance to plant and sow seeds of mistrust and doubt in order to grow a population ready and willing to commit treason? Taking advantage of their desperation in order to gain favor and garner a twisted form of trust and obligation in order to trap them into feeling like they needed to stay quiet and do what they’re told in order to stay in your good graces? Kemmerer pulled no punches with the allegory, and I’m glad for it. It was a slick move for a plot line. It drew me into the story with little effort and helped me to identify with the characters in a way nothing else would.

I love the way Kemmerer does her narrative prose and the way her characters recall things that are said. It’s not done in the typical narrative manner and it really stands out. I also love how a lot of the symbolism in her books is double-sided and much of the morality is gray. It’s messy, but it’s true. I like my books that way.

Thanks to NetGalley, Bloomsbury Children’s, and Bloomsbury YA for granting me early access to this title in exchange for a fair and honest review.

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***Thank you to NetGalley and to the publisher, for providing me with an advanced digital copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.***

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I loved a return into the Cursebreaker world and getting a glimpse into some familiar faces lives. It was so interesting to see character growth and individuality. The writing was unique and the story was interesting and dynamic. I enjoyed it immensly.

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It was really fun to slip back into the world of the Cursebreakers Series. I loved the trilogy so I had high hopes for this one. I had a little bit of a hard time getting into the story and getting interested in the books new characters. The writing was fabulous and the story has a great plot. I would say that it is very important to read the first series before starting this one too.

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Thank you NetGalley for the free eArc in exchange for a honest review.

I was nervous for this spin off because I wasn’t too happy with the last book of the Cursebreakers series, but I was very surprised by how much I enjoyed this one! It took me a little bit to get hooked into the story, but about 25% of the way in I started to get into it. Despite how thick it is it’s a very quick read! I love all the queer and disability rep. I love seeing all the characters growth and struggle. I definitely am excited for the sequel to this one because the cliffhanger left me intrigued!

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Forging Silvers has us returning to the the Cursebreakers trilogy world. While I don’t think you necessarily have to read the Cursebreakers first, I would recommend it. Since I had read Cursebreakers first, I was more invested in the story and characters while getting to know new characters. The first third of the story is a slower pace as characters are introduced and relationships develop. As motivations are revealed and feelings develop with our 3 main characters, the intrigue had me hooked. While the book is long, I found myself not wanting the story to end. This book does end on a cliffhanger and you will have to wait for the 2nd release.

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This is the first book in a new trilogy by Brigid Kemmerer - back in the same world as her Cursebreaker series. I actually haven't read the original trilogy yet, and though this book does have spoilers, I'd say you can read in whatever order you'd like if you don't mind that. I didn't feel lost or confused at all, there was enough explanation surrounding previous events, and this was enough of a new plot that I feel the Cursebreaker series is not 100% necessary - I'm going to go ahead and treat them like a prequel!

Let's talk characters! The story is told from three different points of view, and we have quite a few interesting side characters as well! Callyn owns the bakery, and though I did like her... I will say that she wasn't my favorite of the three. She fell a bit flat in my opinion, but I adored her little sister Nora! So inquisitive and full of life... she was a funny one and I enjoyed her parts! Then we have Jax, the blacksmith! Him and Callyn are close friends, and I liked his character alot. He's resilient yet sweet, and in a tough spot due to his father's drinking/gambling problems. In order to save his forge, he enters a deal that may or may not have him committing treason....

And then we have Tycho! Tycho was also a character I liked - straightforward, sure of himself (usually), and well-spoken. I enjoyed seeing things through his eyes, and liked reading his internal monologue.

In terms of romance, we have two different relationships building throughout, one of which is LGBT, and both have their pros and cons! In terms of plot, it's a bit on the slower side overall, but also not at the same time.. if that makes sense lol! There's alot going on, but also alot of information and world-building and so on. A good read overall though, and I'm excited to see what happens next!

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I loved this fantasy book and it was a lot of fun to read. Forging Silver into Stars is a fast-paced fantasy novel with disability rep in it. I enjoyed reading about Jax and Callyn.

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Thank you so much to Bloomsbury YA and Netgalley for letting me read an eARC of this book! I haven't actually read any of Brigid Kemmerer's books, but I've seen her A Curse So Dark and Lonely books all over the place, so I was the most excited to read this one! And it was so good- I really enjoyed it and now, I cannot wait to both read the next book in this series and to go back and read A Curse So Dark and Lonely!
Forging Silver into Stars 5/5 Stars
Summary from Goodreads:
When ancient magic tests a newfound love, a dark fate beckons . . .
Magic has been banished in the land of Syhl Shallow for as long as best friends Jax and Callyn can remember. They once loved the stories of the powerful magesmiths and mythical scravers who could conjure fire or control ice, but now they’ve learned that magic only leads to danger: magic is what killed Callyn’s parents, leaving her alone to raise her younger sister. Magic never helped Jax, whose leg was crushed in an accident that his father has been punishing him for ever since. Magic won’t save either of them when the tax collector comes calling, threatening to take their homes if they can't pay what they owe.
Meanwhile, Jax and Callyn are astonished to learn magic has returned to Syhl Shallow -- in the form of a magesmith who's now married to their queen. Now, the people of Syhl Shallow are expected to allow dangerous magic in their midst, and no one is happy about it.
When a stranger rides into town offering Jax and Callyn silver in exchange for holding secret messages for an anti-magic faction, the choice is obvious -- even if it means they may be aiding in a plot to destroy their new king. It’s a risk they’re both willing to take. That is, until another visitor arrives: handsome Lord Tycho, the King’s Courier, the man who’s been tasked with discovering who’s conspiring against the throne.
Suddenly, Jax and Callyn find themselves embroiled in a world of shifting alliances, dangerous flirtations, and ancient magic . . . where even the deepest loyalties will be tested.
I really, really liked this book! It was super long, so definitely don't go into it thinking that you're getting into a short read. No, this book is 560ish pages, but I read it in about 2 sittings and it was great! I really loved Tycho as a character and Jax and Callyn were great characters too! The three of them shared the spotlight as our main-ish characters, and there wasn't a point of view that I didn't want to read. If I had to pick a favorite point of view, it would have to be Tycho's only because he was all over both kingdoms and really pushing the plot forward. In terms of plot and pacing, I thought that it was really well done. For such a long book, I didn't feel like anything was dragging or that anything over the top or too much happened in the book that made it so that I couldn't remember what was going on. Overall, I think that Forging Silver into Stars was a great book and a great beginning to a spin-off series that you can for sure read without having to read the initial series too. I highly recommend picking it up!

Link to be added once blog post goes live

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Actual rating: 4.5

Brigid's writing NEVER disappoints me, her books remind me why YA Fantasy is my favorite genre. I will say, I didn't like how the Cursebreakers series ended. At All. However, I maintain that I like how Brigid writes and so I was looking forward to this one and it did NOT disappoint.

Firstly! Characters!! Tycho, Jax, Callyn, I loved them all. The POVs don't get muddled and it was really refreshing to see out of the palace perspectives on everything happening! I will say, as much as I liked Grey in the first series... I was fully Team Tycho on this one, Grey could take a walk. I understood his motives but he wasn't doing it for me.

The plot line was excellent and the twists snuck up on me! I loved how we got more insight into the world building and magic system. Slightly spicer than I would prefer for a YA book but I still enjoyed it and am excited for the next one!

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My Review: ⭐️⭐️⭐⭐/ 5

This is a YA (bordering on New Adult) fantasy novel set in the same world of the beloved Cursebreaker series by Brigid Kemmerer. It's been a few years since Grey ascended to the throne of Syhl Shallow with Lia Mara, allying with Emberfall after years of turmoil and war between both lands. However, the people of Syhl Shallow are still hesitant and afraid of embracing magic in their lands and suspicious of their new king’s real motives. Jax, a blacksmith and his best friend Callyn, a baker, in Briarlock have exorbitant high balances with the tax collector. They are offered a chance to make quick money by helping to hold and pass secret messages by a rebellious anti-magic group. Lord Tycho, a royal courier, stumbles upon the small village, and makes Jax really grapple with his choices that border on treason.

I liked the first book from the Cursebreaker series, but was lukewarm with the overall series ending. Although there are appearances from the original series which makes connecting the dots pretty easy, I quickly fell in love with these new characters: Jax, Callyn, and Alec. Younger Tycho was in the original series, but I enjoyed reading more about his history. Tycho and Jax - love them! Their relationship is so sweet and real. Also loved Alec and Callyn, which took me by surprise.I was relieved there was not a love triangle in this one. Some parts were really slow and took me a while to get immersed in this, but overall I really enjoyed this even more than the Cursebreaker series.

Thank you to Bloomsbury and netgalley for the e-ARC in exchange for my honest review.

Tropes: enemies to lovers (a little); lbgtq+romance

Triggers: mentions of rape/trauma, animal death

Spice Level: 0.5/5

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What a treat to go back to where it all began. I loved the first three books in Kemmerer’s series and I was BEYOND excited to get my hands on Forging Silver into Stars. Sure it’s a new trilogy but it brings us back to our favorite characters - Grey, Rhen, a little bit of Harper and Lia Mara. It was awesome to see what they’ve been up to these past few years. And let me just tell you - a whole lot!
Which brings us to our three POVs for this story, Tycho, Calla and Jax.
This book was great. It has a darker tone than the other three. Kemmerer has obviously been effected by the world’s recent events and it shows in her writing. Misinformation, suspicion and plots to overthrow our serious King Grey are abound in this book. Grey has magic and that magic is powerful and mysterious. And what the world can’t understand, they fear.
It is different. There aren’t a lot of light hearted moments. There is lots of romance and some LGBT+ love which I adored. But I want to say that it is heavier and more serious than our previous visit to this fantasy land. It’s not a bad thing. The author balances some heavy topics taken from today’s headlines and incorporates them into her writing, showing both sides of stories and the sad truth that sometimes people with good intentions do terrible inexcusable things. The road to hell etc.
That said, I like the differences. I loved going back to Grey and Rhen, whose fractured relationship is mending but still bumpy. I loved watching Rhen and Tacho developing a real authentic friendship, even though their original meeting from the first trilogy was traumatic. I love the growth of these old characters and the new tensions that the new characters bring.
Overall it’s an exciting beginning of a new series that is new, refreshing and also sentimental.

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This was such a good start to this new series and I can’t wait to see what happens next. Callyn just wants what is best for her family and wants to do her best by her sister. Jax just wants to be able to be more the just the “Misfortunate” one. Tycho seems to just wants freedom and to be able to follow his own path but his loyalty is making that harder for him. I loved how each of them interacted not only with each other but also with the political drama that they are all stick in the middle of. There are some many questions left to be answered so I can’t wait to see where the next book leads us.

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Ok I had to go back and catch up with the Cursebreaker series so that I would remember some of these characters better.

it took me a minute to get into the book, but it picked up and I enjoyed it more than I thought I would,

The book has us following three POVs: Tycho, the King's Courier Jax, a blacksmith, and Callyn, a baker.
I'll be honest and say at first I really didn't feel anything for any of these characters but i got caught up in their stories.

I was nearing the end when I realized that this would not be a one off but looks like the start of a new trilogy. It was good, but I'm not sure if it's good enough for me to continue the series.

Thank you to NetGalley for the ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own

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I have never had a series, spinoff, or author who could make me flip flop on whether I love or hate characters so frequently as Bridgid Kemmerer. Every time I pick up one of these books, I am wondering who I will loathe and who I will love today, and it´s absolutely wonderful. I love the new direction Forging Silver into Stars took, after the conclusion of the Cursebreakers. I can´t wait for more!

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This was such a great read! I have always enjoyed Brigid Kemmerer’s writing style and this book did NOT disappoint🔥. I found the plot line to be addictive and read this book in a few days.
Callyn’s character really resonated with me. I sympathized with her plot line so much (having a siblings myself) and enjoyed her character development immensely. I especially loved that the dual POV of this book allowed the reader to see her thought process and understand her reasoning during the plot.
Jack was definitely a well-thought-out character and a favorite of mine to be sure. I loved the chemistry and feeling that Brigid added into his character as well. Overall, I did get a bit frustrated at the limited world building in the beginning of the book but it really picked up about halfway through.

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