Venators: Legend Rise By Devri Walls Review
Spoiler warnings: There will be spoilers for book 1 and 2 of the Venators series (Magic Unleashed and Promises Forged), by default. I’m not going to come out and say, xyz happened in this book or xyz happened in this book. Obviously, it will just be engrained in the review of Legends Rise (Venators Book 3). If you haven’t read Magic Unleashed or Promises Forged, please do not proceed further. My review of Venators: Magic Unleashed is linked. I did a Dream Cast with Devri Walls, for the blog tour for Promises Forged. However, the Write Reads did a phenomenal job with reviews for Promises Forged.
Here are some of the reviews for Promises Forged (but again, I wouldn’t read them unless you have read Magic Unleashed)
That is your warning. I’m going to dive right into the review from here.
Grey’s Past Is Coming For Him And It Is Pretty Black And White
DAMN. The past comes to find everyone in one way or another. Right now, let’s talk about Grey. In the first two Venators books, we become pretty aware of how Grey withdrew from society. Whether it was at school, or at home, Grey took the trench coat from Goths and used it to duck out from the world altogether. And in Legends Rise, he starts dealing with why. I won’t say all the specifics of what, why, when, and who he tells it all to.
The more important theme that is explored, is how it has affected past decisions, current decisions, and what he can do with the trauma going forward. Now that it is more out in the open, can it help him, or will it continue to be a weakness? Although everyone knows he’s in a lot of pain. They don’t all know the specifics, and they don’t need to. Grey’s savior complex has been on display since he went off half-cocked in Magic Unleashed, without knowing how the werewolf hierarchy works. That snafu is still wreaking havoc in Legends Rise.
It continued with the ending events in Magic Unleashed, which set-up the entirety of Promises Forged and again, still holds ramifications in Legends Rise. While he meant to do one thing, he ends up getting Tate caught and sending him straight back in as a gladiator. This is horrible for Tate, his family, and for Verida. She has failed on her promise to Tate (by not keeping his wife and son free), her father (Tate was Dracula’s property and now he’s going to fight for King Keir). PLUS, now Rune is indebted to the Pixies, after saving his life.
Thank you to Brown Books and Edelweiss for an ARC in exchange for an honest review
Thing is, it doesn’t have to work this way. As Beltran reminds Verida. Often that, which seems a weakness, can be a strength if he learns to harness it as one. Yes. He’s made some major mistakes so far, but he also demonstrates empathy and garners trust, with key groups. Thus, building allies where there would previous be enemies.
Verida stared at the ground, processing. “I forget, sometimes,” she mumbled. “That his vulnerability could be anything other than a weakness.”
“Grey will inspire a while new kind of loyalty, the likes of which the council has never seen… Mark my words Verida- the creatures whose lives Grey touches? They will die for him.”
We Are Family- SHUT UP AND DEAL WITH IT
Devri Walls has found families and biological families colliding all over the place in Legends Rise. And our poor Venators are stuck right in the middle of it. Tate, his wife, and son.
Bring on House Dracula’s sisterly reunion!
Plus- well I can’t talk about that one. But look. Then there is the family you kinda chose, or maybe you just had to go with but thank god you did because man they were fun to go riding through Legends Rise, with:
Beltran, Grey, Rune and Verida
I had too much fun with these four. I really did. Between Beltran’s ability to aggravate, well, everyone. And he loves to do it. And Verida’s ability to be wound up by, well, everyone- even when they weren’t even trying to do it? I mean it was just OH FOR FUCKS SAKE gone wild, and I was completely there for every bit of it. Sometimes Verida wanted to play mom and they just weren’t letting her, and that aggravated her. And sometimes she was trying to be a control freak, and well that was an exercise in futility. Then sometimes Beltran was just, Beltran.
Plus, there is Rune and Beltran. Rune and Grey. Grey and his visions. Grey and himself. Verida and Grey (she really does like him, even if she has a hard time with it). I’m just saying…
Zio, Ryker, And Rune
Well, then. All the things I can’t say and want to scream.
What I can say is that I’m so excited we got more of this storyline. And then I’m so mad I wanted more of this storyline because BULLSHIT how Ryker is being tortured by this bitch. Yet another author who wants to drag me through the mud. Am I the only one who is feeling a heap of anger about this? I just can’t stand how Rune and Ryker are being twisted to believe the wrong things about each other.
And I know Grey saw what he saw in his vision of Zio and Ryker training. And yes, Grey and Ryker hate each other. BUT he couldn’t stop and think for one second that MAYBE, JUST MAYBE, with all he has been told of Zio that Ryker is being manipulated? If even, for Rune’s sake? Even if it is cautionary. Like- I know you love him, and I know you have always defended him. I’m warning you this is what I saw, and maybe he is being manipulated, but it didn’t seem that way to me. So, I’m warning you that I just don’t trust it.
Is that too much to ask of Grey? Apparently.
Damn. This is a brilliant third book to catapult this book. And now House Dracula is coming into shape. BRING IN, DADDY! I want this mess! This is going to be a grand spectacle of vampire mess. And I am here for it. The sisters were done so well- everyone will love it!
The ending. Not just the ending, but the last 25% that I have touched on but not gone into details on so much of. LORD HAVE MERCY. There is so much going on here that it is sheer insanity. Book four can go in so many different directions. There are so many storylines to explore. I cannot wait to see where Devri Walls takes the Venator series next.
The themes that are being explored from family dynamics to trauma, politics (HOLY CRAP- that is another piece to this puzzle that I can’t really talk about without spoiling a shit load of Verida’s backstory- and there is A LOT). There is so much juiciness that is finding its way, together. It is kind of like seasons six in Game of Thrones where people are just starting to meet each other, and lines are starting to cross. That is just starting here, and foreshadowing how pieces of the puzzle fit. Book four is gonna be a hot mess!