Audiobook review: Raven Unveiled by Grace Draven
Gharek, assassin and enforcer for the recently deceased empress, is tracking his daughter’s former nurse, Siora, because she betrayed him. He’s made many enemies over the years as the empress’s “Cat’s Paw,” and he himself is hunted. Siora has lived much of her life as a beggar, alone in the world. She gets by as a medium, talking to ghosts. When a powerful force begins devouring ghosts and attacking the living, Gharek and Siora must work together to save those they love.
Raven Unveiled is the third fantasy in the Fallen Empire series. The main characters Gharek and Siora have been part of the narrative for the past two books, and there is some overlap in time; therefore, I highly recommend these stories be read in order. Overall, I enjoyed this romance centered on forgiveness and redemption. I liked how Siora’s unwavering faith in Gharek’s love for his daughter prompts her to show Gharek kindness and affection. She shows him time and time again that he is worthy of life and love, eventually convincing him.
The pair are bound by circumstance, and while their travels give them pieces to the puzzle of how to save their world, it’s the adventures that give them the chance to get to know each other and see their inner truth. They grow comfortable, then friendly. Gharek discovers that he wants to be the person Siora believes him to be. He admires her courage and moral compass. I enjoyed listening to their journey and just being with them as they experience and feel.
Narration: the story is shared from the third person POV of the two main characters, Gharek and Siora. Ms. McEwan performs the entire story using a single narrative voice, regardless of the POV. She has a British accent, which is enjoyable to listen to while it reenforces the fact that this story is not of our world. She alters her voice for age, gender, and somewhat for regional accent. Male voices are slightly deeper. Each character has a well-suited voice, and everything varies just enough to be able to differentiate who is who. She is able to infuse her performance with heightened emotions such as fear and exuberance.
In the end, I enjoy the continuing stories and drama found in the Fallen Empire series. Raven Unveiled adds more interesting layers to the world and mythology while sharing an unlikely yet delightful romance.
About the Book:
Siora has been on the run for longer than she cares to remember, from her past and her gift. Born with the ability to see and speak to ghosts, she has heard their desperate pleas as an otherworldly predator stalks the dead amid the fertile killing fields of the collapsing Krael Empire. The creature’s power and reach are growing with every soul it consumes, but Siora is preoccupied with her own troubles: namely an assassin who has sworn an oath of vengeance against her.
Gharek of Cabast was once the right-hand man of the reviled empress but is now a wanted fugitive. Although his reasons for hunting Siora are viscerally personal, what Gharek can’t anticipate is that when he finally does find her, she will hold the key to saving his world, or what’s left of it. To make good on old debts and protect the vulnerable dead from a malevolent force, Gharek and Siora will both need to make an ally out of an enemy—and trust that will be enough to save each other.
Author: Grace Draven
Narrator: Katharine Lee McEwan
Series: The Fallen Empire #3
Genre: Fantasy Romance
Audiobook Release Date: November 8, 2022
Publisher: Penguin Random House Audio
Length: 11 hrs and 21 mins
Source: Audiobook Publisher
Audio Speed: 1.5x
Audible/Amazon (affilate link)