Adventure, Fantasy, Romance

Review: Seas of Crimson Silk | Burning Empire by Emma Hamm

seasA dragon can be loyal forever, if you tame her first. But Sigrid would sooner be dead than tamed.

Dragon shifter Sigrid of Wildewyn has spent her life in a cage, quite literally. Whether she’s hidden from her own people, or masked so they cannot see her face, she’s dedicated her life to her country and king. But, when her king promises her to a rival warlord and Sultan of a country she hates, her loyalty is tested. 

Nadir of Bymere was the boy king no one ever thought would sit on the throne. And though he knows his country is ruled by corrupt advisors, he’s lost himself in the glory of being Sultan. When they force him to marry a masked woman from the country who murdered his brother, he’s set to torture her for a lifetime. 

Both hiding their own secrets, the two slowly realize there is more to both their kingdoms than they originally thought. With many in the kingdom who need help, Sigrid and Nadir must choose who they truly ally with: each other…or their kingdoms. Their choice will put either their hearts or their lives at risk.

Readers who devoured Game of Thrones, fell in love with The Chronicles of Narnia, and enjoy a little blood with their slow burn romance will find Seas of Crimson Silk thrilling!

5 stars

Fantasy | Romance | Mythology | Adventure 

***Received an Advanced Readers Copy from Emma Hamm in exchange for an honest review***

My obsession for Emma Hamm is fierce my furry friends. She has me in a choke hold and I don’t think she is going to ever let me go. When I had heard there was something in the mix of a possible Game of Thrones-isk yummy, you bet your bottom dollar my spidey senses were tingling. 

Firstly, I know, I will try to do this as best as I can without spoilers, because no one likes spoilage, but I will admit because I am a huge Game of Thrones fan I will give a little nudge on my cross thoughts for theories because, why not? So this is your warning, this is intended to be spoiler free but for obvious reasons of honorable mentions, there might be a slight hint of the jist of things, at least picking up what I am putting down.

Everything about Emma Hamm’s writing style always has me soaring through the sky, honestly she has such an amazing way of world building that for me, as the reader it is so easy to see the world I can practically taste it. Honestly I would expect nothing less than phenomenal with her world building, point blank. Even breaking away from my love for her Otherworlds Series, this new world for Empire Burning was just stunning.

Aside from her world building, it is her character dynamics and their personalities that always strike me in the gut in more ways than one. Nadir and Sigrid are everything. And I do mean… everything. 

Sigrid is powerful. I do not think there is a single attribute about her character that I did not absolutely obsess over. She was absolutely a treat. Sigrid was definitely more easy to pinpoint than Nagird on many aspects; I say this because from the beginning you knew she was fierce, she was strong and yet she was devastatingly crippled emotionally. No matter this, she was such a powerful character that she honestly stood tall, she looked fear in the eye without batting an eyelash. It is like she takes her flaws and she owns them, she takes her weakness and strengthens them. The passion that is everything about Sigrid is beyond empowering, my inner self is waving high fives to this female lead. 

Nadir was something of an enigma if you will, definitely a puzzle I was curious to figure out. He had such an amazing personality. I absolutely loved that he second guessed himself, it made him seem more human less this King royal figure, less menacing, because he seems so sure of himself on the exterior yet he has such a naive almost inferior passion about himself. He is constantly battling himself, wanting to shine more in the light of his brother, he really thinks constantly of his influence, missing his guidance yet I wonder if that has some self esteem hindrance to him? He was such a well rounded character, the complexity and depth of him was beyond gratifying. His character really evolved from the beginning to the end, it was like seeing two separate characters; I felt he was so dependent on so many around him and eventually he started to break those chains, really think for himself. 

And Sigrid with Nadir together – oh my lanta. Between the first interaction to the ending I am beyond floored. Be warned, this is a slow burn of romance, that is definitely apparent in all the most deliciously antagonizing of ways. Everything from their physical chemistry to their verbal interactions was definitely melt worthy. I still cannot get over the scene where Sigrid challenges Nadir’s army, then the two of them spar, the passion between them was nothing short of fierce. It practically sizzled the pages. These two proving their worth to one another was legitimate a form of foreplay of massive proportions. Honestly, not only that they really had just a great connection, their chemistry was something of destiny. It was perfect.

There were so many supporting characters, and honestly I don’t even know if you can counter them strictly as secondary because I felt every character intertwined with Sigrid and Nadir were so pivotal to the actual plot that denouncing them to that status seems hurtful almost… I ramble, I know. But there are a few characters I just felt were phenomenal, I am pining away to see what happens with these few comrades next.

Raheem is probably my favorite. When he was first introduced I almost felt like he had a understanding towards Sigrid, one that was basically immediate, I had (dare I say) almost itched for a love triangle. However I am happy I am wrong, at least for now, he seemed like such an interesting friend of both Sigrid and Nadir that he is just lovable. That’s right, not only did he understand Sigrid but there was a bromance – oh my stars. The connection between Raheem and Nadir was down right splendid, regardless of my initial wish for a twist, I am liking this platonic triangle of friendship. Raheem was also on Nadir’s side, it was almost as if in the midst of the ‘Boy King’ shadow with advisers, Nadir had at leas one individual who spoke to him straight, showed him kindness, friendship and just an honest respect between two alpha-personalities. They were fun together, the seer wit and grit of their dialogue was enough to send me chuckling.

There were two other (amongst a long list, I promise you…) characters that I simply cannot get over either. Jabbar and Saafiya. Saafiya is the first wife of Nadir and by all accounts, she is the Cersei of Seas of Crimson Silk. I love to hate her and loathe to like her, honestly she is such an easy villain to dislike, as a reader you just sit there and know she is basically conniving for her own benefit, and it is glorious. As for Jabbar there isn’t much I can say just yet other than a possible theory, I feel such a huge attribute of his personality is keen towards Petyr, but I am just not sure yet. I dare say I might see a blend of the Jackel from Red Rising with the sneaky brutality of Petyr but I just don’t know how or to what lengths this is just yet, but I am beyond excited to find out!

Bottom line – LOVED IT. Yes. I will say that to the ends of the world comrades, this was absolutely phenomenal. It gave me so many emotional feels, my heart is sent in a tizzy of possibilities, I am absolutely and incandescently head over heels in love with this new series. Emma has surpassed herself yet again. Taking away that yes, it gives all the undertone of Game of Thrones and yet it is it’s own world, utterly sinful, delicious and downright amazing. It is a fantasy that I have been dying to indulge in, needed it I tell you, craved it, and Emma, she flipping slayed it.

With Seas of Crimson Silk ending, Dawn of Cobalt Shadows is seemingly over our near horizon and I am itching to see how this world of Sigrid and Nadir will develop, I need everything. Be still my speckled heart, I know I am in for a rough, and deliciously beautiful adventure.

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