The first thing that struck me about Ron C. Nieto’s book, Fianna’s Awakening, was how much it seemed to want to be a medium-burn romance, but really just falls into an urban fantasy with some romantic…beginnings? It’s an interesting story, for sure.
I first was skeptical because the book isn’t that long. However, Nieto makes fantastic use of that length and the book is fast-paced without feeling rushed. Nieto takes time to make the world and characters live on the pages. I didn’t miss length and the book does not suffer. I’m leery of the possibility of a triangle….I can totally see it happening and I’m pretty jaded against that angst as a romantic plot point.
The action of the story is amazing. The choreography of the fights is amazing. I’ve gotten really used to authors glossing over fight scenes. I don’t know if this is due to lack of knowledge (and laziness in research) or because they don’t think their readers are interested. Nieto makes sure you can see the fight happening. It isn’t just a blur of people fighting for a paragraph with a definitive opening and ending move, but an actual fight with each move described and able to be visualized. Definite kudos for that.
Something that really calls to me about this book is the exploration of a less-popular mythology. Fomorians and Tuatha De show up occasionally in UF books, but to have this mythology be the focus of the entire world in the book is something that excites me. I love when authors branch out and do something new. I can only hope that the rest of the series is as good as this introductory novel was.
The one thing that really could be improved upon is the accent and cadence of speech and the descriptions of locations. Very VERY rarely does it feel like I’m “hearing” somebody with an Irish accent. Like…basically never. The characters all speak with what I would consider to be a Midwestern American accent–aka none. The cadence of speech, the turns of phrase…there is absolutely nothing that says that this is taking place in Dublin instead of Chicago. There is mention of specific places from Dublin and surrounding areas, however thy aren’t described. To tell me that they’re at Tara without describing Tara…or to say you’re at Trinity College without describing it…well…it just doesn’t really help set up the scene. I hope that future novels will delve into these two things further, as I really think that the atmosphere will become more important in the coming books.
That being said, this book is a great start to a new series. There is no cliffhanger. The main conflict is resolved…but the hints at more make sure the reader knows this isn’t a stand alone. Definitely recommend starting this series and falling in love with Celtic mythology.
Grab your copy at the links below!
Ron C. Nieto
(Warriors of Myth and Legend, #1)
Publication date: November 13th 2018
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy
Outcast. Betrayer. Chosen.
After five years being a Fianna, Aisling O’Malley still has to prove herself every day. The sins of the father weigh heavily on her shoulders, and no matter what she does, her fellow warriors regard her as the undeserving one. It doesn’t help that one of the four mythical treasures of Ireland has turned up under her nose, leaving her none the wiser. If by any chance the touted Spear of Lugh up for auction is indeed the legendary Spear of Victory, she needs to get her hands on it before anyone else does—and be spectacular enough about it to make the rest of the Fianna forget she almost missed the artifact in the first place.
Exile. Betrayer. Forgotten.
After spending twice as long undercover as he ever lived at home, Ronan no longer knows where he belongs to or where he’s actually exiled from. He can’t return to his people, not unless he collects the four artifacts of power the Tuatha Dé lost when they were forced to leave Ireland, and three millennia after the fact, he’s pretty sure they’re going to remain lost. Except one of those ancient treasures has landed in his lap—or could land in his lap, if he brings himself to work with the spunky young woman who wants to hire him to consult on the Spear’s authenticity.
Can two broken people learn to trust one another? And even if they can, will it be too late to save Ireland… or themselves?
Ron C. Nieto is a fantasy and romance author who has been writing in her secluded fortress for the longest time. Recently, she had a talk with her cat and decided that she should share her creations, because it was selfish to hoard them all for herself.
If you would like to know more about her, please visit her website.