Overall: 3.5/5 Stars
Plot and Themes: 3/5
Awesomeness Factor: 3/5
Review in a Nutshell: Roar is a fun fantasy, with plenty of romance and a unique world. However, if you’re only a mild fantasy fan with a big TBR, I would understand skipping this one in favor of others.
“Perhaps death is all that waits for me across the great waters, but better to know death than to choose fear of the unknown.”
// Content Warning: Violence, Sexual Assault (Attempt), Anxiety, Murder, Illness, Imprisonment //
“If there’s one thing I know it’s that freedom shouldn’t feel like a noose around your neck.”
Release Date: 6/13/2017
Publisher: Tor Teen
Page Count: 380
Roar follows Princess Aurora, who comes from a long line of powerful Stormlings, but holds no Stormling power herself. Desperate to protect her kingdom and her secret, Aurora agrees to her mother’s plan of marrying her off to a Stormling prince from another kingdom, but the more she learns about him, the more her future terrifies her. Disguising herself, Aurora flees the palace and joins group of storm hunters who promise her a way to gain storm magic for herself.
Read more for all of my thoughts on Roar!
“For the storms of his world were violent, hungry beasts intent on destruction and death and despair. And they called him master.”
Writing & Setting
This is Cora Cormack’s first delve into YA fantasy, and there were definitely some moments were it was noticeable, specifically with the dialogue. Her characters would often avoid contractions, which made their conversations feel stiff and took me out of the book more than once. That said, she managed to do a really good job with her world-building. The storms in this series are simultaneously fascinating and terrifying. Which, to be honest, are my feelings when I think about real world storms and natural disasters. Roar really capitalized on those feelings, adding a layer that makes the setting of this book stand out from other YA fantasies.
“She had hoped. And hope broke more hearts than any man ever could.”
I’m a sucker for princess stories. It’s my weakness. Specifically stories following princesses venturing beyond their palace. No matter how often it’s done (and oh god is it done often), I usually enjoy it. This book is no exception. The plot itself isn’t terribly unique or memorable, but it serves as something fun if you, like me, love these types of stories. The pacing is just “okay”, with some action and adventure and a little bit of politics thrown in. Honestly, when I think of the pacing and plot of this book, the word that comes to mind is unremarkable. Not bad, not good. Just… unremarkable. While I never felt hooked, I also never felt bored.
“If she were a storm, she could destroy him, and he would never lift a finger to protect himself.”
This book is told through 5 different POVs, so we definitely have our fair share of characters to get to know. Thankfully, most of them are fairly well-developed and interesting. Casimir was probably my favorite. I just love my dark and mysterious princes. But onto our protagonists: Aurora has some pretty good character development. She wasn’t my favorite protagonist at first, but she definitely grew into a character I liked. Where Aurora’s story is about growth, I feel like the journey with Locke is more about unlocking his backstory (did you get the pun there? Sorry not sorry). It’s interesting, but I’m looking forward to seeing him develop more over the course of the series. 5 POVs is definitely a lot, and sometimes it can be warranted, but I will say there is definitely one POV that you know the least about and is probably the least compelling. Hopefully that will be changing in the sequel.
“Confusion leads to knowledge for those brave enough to seek it.”
Pros- Interesting setting and magic system
Cons- Not particularly unique plot-wise
Overall- 3.5/5 stars.
Roar is a fun book, and definitely entertaining, but it’s not the most memorable or original fantasy novel I’ve read.
If You Liked Roar, I’d Recommend:
- The Kiss of Deception (The Remnant Chronicles #1) by Mary E. Pearson
- Ruined (Ruined #1) by Amy Tintera – [ Review ]
“Sometimes you must make answers when there are none.”
Have you read Roar? What did you think? Also, what type of storm/natural disaster scares you most?
I don’t know if scared is the right word, but I’m very paranoid about tornadoes. I’ve been through quite a few of them and now during any strong thunderstorm I start worrying that a tornado will touch down.