Monday, September 24, 2012

The Unfailing Light Blog Tour Kick Off: Review + Giveaway

Read (September 23, 2012)
Book: The Unfailing Light (The Katerina Trilogy #2) by Robin Bridges
Publishing Date: October 9, 2012
Publisher: Delacorte BFYR
Number of Pages: 320
Genre/s: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Historical Fiction

Lush and opulent, romantic and sinister, "The Unfailing Light, " Volume II in The Katerina Trilogy, reimagines the lives of Russia's aristocracy in a fabulously intoxicating and page-turning fantasy.

Having had no choice but to use her power has a necromancer to save Russia from dark forces, Katerina Alexandrovna, Duchess of Oldenburg, now wants to forget that she ever used her special powers. She's about to set off to pursue her lifelong dream of attending medical school when she discovers that Russia's arch nemesis--who she thought she'd destroyed--is still alive. So on imperial orders, Katerina remains at her old finishing school. She'll be safe there, because the empress has cast a potent spell to protect it against the vampires and revenants who are bent on toppling the tsar and using Katerina for their own gains. But to Katerina's horror, the spell unleashes a vengeful ghost within the school, a ghost more dangerous than any creature trying to get in. - (source)

“I believe you can create the life you want, Katiya. You are strong enough to make all of your dreams come true.” - taken from an uncorrected ARC 

I've always admired Katerina. She is strong-willed and compassionate. Her dream of becoming a doctor to help and heal others is all the more inspiring because it's very uncommon in her time and for someone of nobility. Other girls her age think of nothing but balls, gowns and only ambitions to marry someone rich and powerful. But Katerina also has a dark gift and despite her efforts not to be involved with the continuously rising dispute in the St. Petersburg's royal courts, she always finds herself dragged in the middle of it all. Everybody just wants to use her. Amidst all of this, Katerina struggles to remain untouched by darkness and this just made her truly endearing. 

One of the many positive qualities of The Unfailing Light is its ability to enthrall its readers with its atmosphere. Imperial Russia is depicted as regal and majestic but it is also sinister and foreboding and boasts quite a number of paranormal creatures that would scare the living wit out of an unknowing, oblivious ordinary person. It's still hard to keep track of the lineages and who's who but the mystery that was sustain all throughout the book just made The Unfailing Light such a thrilling read.

Katerina's time back in Smolny Institute was definitely one of my favorite parts. I kept trying to guess what's really happening, who to trust, who's behind it all as Katerina attempts to appease the uncontrollable, vehement presence to protect her friends.

We also get to see more of Katerina's power. It's getting stronger and with it Katerina seems to be evolving, too. She's still the same stubborn yet kindhearted girl but she's growing to become someone formidable. Her relationship with George progresses as well. Their secret meetings and stolen kisses were surprisingly enough to make me giddy and lighthearted.

In The Gathering Storm, Bridges introduced us to Imperial Russia in all its glory but we quickly learned that behind all the glamour and curtsies, power struggles exist. In this second installment, the conspiracy and deceit was as palpable as ever. But like in the first book, the ending left me a little frustrated and somewhat disgruntled. Bridges really has a knack to end her books in a way that will left her readers wanting more. 

Overall, The Unfailing Light is a strong, compelling read. Full of intrigue and magic, The Unfailing Light is as enchanting as its predecessor.

Cupid's Verdict:
4 Cupids

A copy was provided by the publisher at no cost via Netgalley
in exchange for an honest review.

I am very honored to be kicking off this blog tour and I'm offering a copy to one lucky reader courtesy of the wonderful people from Random House Kids. This giveaway is open to US only. Sorry international peeps! To enter, just fill out the Rafflecopter form below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

By day, Robin Bridges is a mild-mannered writer of fantasy and paranormal fiction for young adults. By night, she is a pediatric nurse. Robin lives on the Gulf Coast with her husband, one soon-to-be teenager, and two slobbery mastiffs. She likes playing video games and watching Jane Austen movies. (If only there was a Jane Austen video game!) The Katerina Trilogy began with the The Gathering Storm and continues with The Unfailing Light.
You can find Robin Bridges here: Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads


Here are the rest of the stops. Don't forget to drop by! ;)
~September 25th: Casey’s Crew
~September 26th: Much Ado About Books
~September 26th: The Streetlight Reader
~September 27th: Infinite Reads
~September 28th: The Hiding Spot
~September 29th: Girls *Heart* Books
~October 1st: Mom Reads My Books
~October 2nd: The Book Review Club
~October 3rd: The Book Review Club
~October 4th: Kimba Caffeinated
~October 4th: My Life is a Notebook
~October 5th: My Life is a Notebook
~October 6th: Candace’s Book Blog
~October 7th: Reader Girls
~October 8th: Bookish
~October 8th: Peace, Love, Books
~October 9th: YA Bibliophile
~October 9th: Reader Girls
~October 10th: Wastepaper Prose
~October 10th: Imaginary Reads
~October 11th: Imaginary Reads
~October 12th: Well Read Wife
~October 15th: Libby Blog
~October 16th: Cracking the Cover
~October 17th: A Bookish Libraria
~October 18th: A Novel Review
~October 19th: In the Best Worlds
~October 20th: Tripping Over Books


  1. Great review, Sarah! I'm glad to hear this sequel was as compelling as the first book. I haven't started this series yet, but it looks like I need to get a move on. ;)

  2. So excited to continue this series!! I sounds really engaging :D

  3. I absolutely love the cover and I'm excited to read more of Katerina's story!

    So intriguing and thanks for the giveaway :)

  4. Imperial Russia is such a great setting for an historical novel. It looks like this one could be a great one. I'd definitely be interested in winning a copy. Thanks.

  5. Great review. Katerina is definitely a girl to admire. She's someone I want to be. I really loved the first book and can't wait to share more of The Unfailing Light with blog readers!! :)

  6. Bc Ive read the Gathering Storm and LOVE it!!!!!! XD

  7. I actually read The Gathering Storm, and it was o-kay, but the ending really did kill me so i cant wait to get my hands on this!! also,, im really glad you enjoyed it! Great review!
    - Farah @ MajiBookshelf

  8. I loved the first book when I got to read it on Netgalley, and hadn't even heard when the second one was coming out! So excited to read on in the story.

  9. This sounds like an awesome story - the Russian backdrop will be perfect:)

    Great review:)

  10. I loved the first book and I can't wait to see what happens next!

  11. I can't wait to read this series. It sounds so good, and I love the covers. Russia is fascinating to me. And Katerina sounds like the kind of character I would love. Thanks for the review!


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