These Rebel Waves, Sara Raasch – Readalong

Hello Humans! If you’re here, hopefully, you will have read my previous read along for The Light Between the Worlds where I totally failed and only did one check-in while reading. Well, my intention with this book is to get back into the habit of actually checking in, and writing more than ‘I like it so far’ which is no good for anyone.

These Rebel Waves featured in the August 2018 Fairyloot box – which is an embarrassingly long time to have a book and not read it (and this isn’t even the oldest thing on my TBR oh dear).I have been informed by friends that I shouldn’t expect pirates (despite the title and cover) so I’m hoping that I’ll enjoy it nonetheless.

Join me as I read this book, checking in frequently enough that this post is actually worth reading…

Goodreads Summary:

These Rebel WavesAdeluna is a soldier. Five years ago, she helped the magic-rich island of Grace Loray overthrow its oppressor, Argrid, a country ruled by religion. But adjusting to postwar life has not been easy. When an Argridian delegate vanishes during peace talks with Grace Loray’s new Council, Argrid demands brutal justice—but Lu suspects something more dangerous is at work.

Devereux is a pirate. As one of the outlaws called stream raiders who run rampant on Grace Loray, he pirates the island’s magic plants and sells them on the black market. But after Argrid accuses raiders of the diplomat’s abduction, Vex becomes a target. An expert navigator, he agrees to help Lu find the Argridian—but the truth they uncover could be deadlier than any war.

Benat is a heretic. The crown prince of Argrid, he harbors a secret obsession with Grace Loray’s forbidden magic. When Ben’s father, the king, gives him the shocking task of reversing Argrid’s fear of magic, Ben has to decide if one prince can change a devout country—or if he’s building his own pyre.

As conspiracies arise, Lu, Vex, and Ben will have to decide who they really are . . . and what they are willing to become for peace.

Find on Goodreads | Amazon (Affiliate)

Chapter One – Four (Aka: what I read while I was on the bus this morning)

So far I’m not entirely sold. We’ve got all these disparate characters and I can’t quite work out the status and motivation of any of them, or even how the three of them fit together. It’s very early days of course, but I need a book to grab me from the start really…

As far as I can tell I’ve got a girl who has something to do with magic plants, I think using magic plants would be seen as a bad thing by the government? Maybe? There’s also a man with an eye missing who got arrested by accident? And…oh I can’t remember…there is another one – was he a guard? Am I mixing things up with Game of Thrones again? You see how things haven’t exactly stuck with me? Not the most gripping start to a YA book, especially one with such a thrilling back cover blurb – I hold out hope for the rest of the book.

But, having said that, I really enjoyed Sara Raasch’s Snow Like Ashes series and that had a bit of a slow start too, so I probably ought to give this more of a chance.

In the spirit of giving this book a fair fight, I did a quick re-read of the summary in an attempt to get my head on a little more straight and I think I’m ready to dive in again on the bus back home again and hopefully hit that point where the real story begins.

Chapter Five – Ten

Yay, it picked up! Am now actually clear on who people are and who can/can’t/should/shouldn’t use magic. The magic system, which is essentially plant magic is also VERY cool and I’m interested to see how that impacts the rest of the story.

Two of the three viewpoints have coincided – it’s unclear as to whether Ben will be joining the other two on their quest or if that comes later.

Please note: I wanted to keep reading but I checked in. Be proud of me.

After a slow start, this book is growing on me. Still a disappointing amount of water for a book with waves in the title but I might allow it since the plant magic is so cool.

Chapter Eleven- Twenty

And it just keeps getting better. Yes, I did read ten chapters this time, but it’s because I was just so hooked (and the bus got stuck in traffic). But yes, we’ve got suspected betrayal, crocodiles and a shocking reveal – what more could a girl want?

In all seriousness, this is a strong ya fantasy novel. Yes it’s tropey, yes it’s a little formulaic but it’s also just good solid writing. I can see a lot of scope for this series.

I still can’t quite see how that third pov is going to fit – and there isn’t too much book left. I’m determined to finish tonight so I’ll be back with another check in and hopefully some answers later.

Chapter Twenty-One – Twenty-Five

Ok I’m on board, fully here for this book. Things are coming together. I mean it’s surely building to a cliffhanger ending but I kind of expect that from books like this.

But yes, even more plot reveals, most of which make sense but were still unexpected, a little bit of romance but not too much – it’s great.

I think I’m going to read all the way through to the end tonight and then do the final verdict in the morning when I’ve had some time to process. Eight chapters to go!

Chapter Twenty-Six – End

I lied, there were nine chapters – it’s by the by!

As I guessed, this built to more of a ‘coming up in the next book’ ending as opposed to tying things off. I don’t mind that at all, especially since I left it long enough that the next book will be out soon.

What surprised me is how late in the game any romance came into play, I mean it was clear something might happen but it wasn’t until the last third of the book that anything really occurred. I wonder if that’s because there was such a clear plan for a sequel that Raasch knew she had the space to stretch it out more than another author might? Who knows? The romance in Snow Like Ashes was, if I remember correctly, pretty satisfying, so I’m interested to see where this goes.

Final Verdict

It’s the next day! I’ve had a night to sleep (not well enough) and reflect and I’ve ended up settling into having quite enjoyed this book. As I said at the start of this readalong, had I not been forewarned about how few pirates were involved I would probably have been dissapointed (fyi I recommend Seafire if you need some piratical fiction in your life). As it was I thought this was a strong YA fantasy novel. It had all the hallmarks of the genre that I love but it managed to combine them with some great character development and that mix of magic and science that manages to feel logical and new and fresh without sucking all the fun out of the idea of magic.

I’d recommend it! If it’s been sat on your shelf as long as it has been on mine I say go for it!

My rating: 4/5 stars

I bought this book myself, all opinions are my own.

Find on Goodreads | Amazon (Affiliate)

What will the TBR Jar pick next?

kings of the Wyld

Ok, this is a little bit of a wild card – wyld card? I got Kings of the Wyld in a Kindle sale (which is where I get all of my Kindle books) and it’ll either be a big win or more of a fail…either way I think we have an exciting readalong coming up!

What say you? What actually piratical reads can you recommend? Let me know in the comments below!


5 thoughts on “These Rebel Waves, Sara Raasch – Readalong

Add yours

  1. This is really similar to my own reaction! It’s such a slow start but the magic and world are so cool?? If it had a better first 100 pages and the dumb nicknames were cut, it would have been a five star read for me

    Liked by 1 person

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