Series: Amber Wolf Duology #1
Release Date: June 4th, 2022
CW: murder and death, kidnapping, bloodshed, violence
Lish Taylor thinks she knows who she is.
But when her team investigates a series of abductions, Lish finds herself guardian of a trembling little boy – one whose experience is unnervingly familiar. And the questions she’s harboured since she was a child, after witnessing the violent murder of her mother, flood to the surface. Lish’s answers lie just beyond the walls of her climate ravaged city; but chasing them means leaving behind the life she has built from nothing.
Captured by the brutal General Siosal, Lish must use her greatest secret to protect not only herself, but the General’s other victims. Aided by the mysterious and compelling Lochlain, Lish’s escape catapults her into the enchanting world of the Calahi, where magic is not something to hide, but a birthright and a gift from the land itself.
To avenge her mother’s death and stop Siosal’s reign of terror, Lish must work with Lochlain and his allies. But as their plans unfold and her connection with Lochlain grows, Lish begins to understand that in order to get what she wants, she may have to admit truths about herself that will change not only the course of her life, but the fate of a dying kingdom.
I should start by saying that the content warnings should not make you stay away from this book. As an adult fantasy, there’s bound to be some topics and thing that will happen through the course of the book that is difficult, but it all comes full circle in the end.
Lauren Searson-Patrick’s debut is a stunning one. The world building, the character histories and all of the wonderful magic that is spread across this book captivated me from the moment I picked it up. I’ll be honest and say this was a complete cover draw for me. I saw the cover, I saw some author friends reading it and had to pick it up myself. And now, here we are. And I have loved every minute of it.
Told entirely through Lish Taylor, Amber Wolf takes you from a small non-magical town where Lish works as a guard with a group of her friends to a magical realm where someone is kidnapping young girls and women to find the heir to the throne. Lish and her best friend Will go on this journey to find these women and bring them back, only to get captured in the process. While being captured, Lish faces off with a evil and cruel man who believes he deserves the crown and meets a charming and quiet healer who wears a hood, but helps her the best he can.
“You’re more than just one woman to me, Lish.“
It’s almost impossible to write a review for a book without giving everything away, but I can tell you that enjoying this book won’t be difficult. Lauren has created some very intriguing characters that I can’t wait to see grow in book two. To start with, Lish Taylor is amazing. I love that she doesn’t come into her powers later in the story and that she’s aware of them and uses them as much as possible. Her powers do manifest into more, but it’s all part of the growing process and I absolutely loved that. Plus, Lish is truly a badass with drive and ambition and determination. She’s not going to let young women like herself fall victim to a man who intends to ruin them.
The supporting characters—since it’s told in first person, everyone feels like a supporting character—are wonderful too. I loved Lochlain. I mean…we all knew we would like him because he’s the hero of this story, as it were. He’s got this whole ‘touch her and I’ll kill you’ vibe going on and don’t we all like a hero of that sort? He’s got secrets, he’s a little grumpy, but more than anything, Lochlain has a big heart and all of it is held out for Lish to do with what she pleases. Lish’s friends from home are a fantastic bunch and I sincerely hope we get some of their stories after the duology finishes, because I believe they have so much to say! And let’s not forget all the people on Lochlain’s side of the world, so generous and kind.
While it took me some time to really get sucked into the story, I loved every minute of it once I was deep enough. I cannot wait to see what Lauren does with the second book, because the way this one ended…I have so many questions!
Thanks to Lauren Searson-Patrick for generously providing me with an advance copy. I am voluntarily leaving an honest review.