Author: Christie Rich
Publisher: Self Published
Publishing Date: August 10th 2011
Genre: YA Urban Fantasy
Series: Elemental Enmity #1
Five (Book 1 in the Elemental Emnity Series) is free on Smashwords and Barnes & Noble, so go grab your copy and enter the giveaway for your chance to win Book 2 & 3!
I was very excited to jump on this tour. I love the cover and the blurb pulled me in right away. From the first page to the last, I was intrigued and entertained. This book was full of mystery, thrills, and romance. Just the right amount of each and was put together with great writing and wonderful characters.
Rayla has been raised under the very careful eye of her aunt. She has never had much freedom and has had pretty much all her choices made for her, including the college she would attend. At the last moment and with help from her best friend, she decides to attend the college she wants to go to. Rayla and Cassie (her best friend) head out of state to attend St. Mary's and on the way experience something very strange. Once they reach the school, things just get strange. Rayla's aunt tells her she holds elemental power and the Dark Fae Lords will be coming to take her away. Now Rayla is surrounded by irresistible men and and she doesn't know who to trust and how to keep safe.
Loved the book. I was fully invested from the first page, hard to put down, and very entertaining. The book was very well written and I felt pulled into the story, it felt real, modern, and flowed so so well. With everything going on, I was easy to follow the story without feeling lost or confused and I was constantly wanting to know what was going to happen next.
The setting was fun. Rayla is in college and I enjoyed the change but what really drew me in was all the magical creatures and fantasy that was built into the modern world. It was like being part of two dimensions at one time. Great Urban Fantasy!
The characters were great, I liked them all and the main character, Rayla, was pretty kick butt. She was very determined to find her way and with her life as it was, she found ways to be without being ultra whiny. I liked that. I also admired how she handled the truth behind secrets that were kept from her since she was a small child. I had a bit of a hard time at the very beginning when she wouldn't stand up to her aunt and ran instead but things changed so quickly, I didn't have time to really dwell on it.
I did get irritated a couple times at Cassie. She was holding so much back and hiding important things due to fear of what others would think. As a child she had issues with hallucination and couldn't find a way to be honest with Rayla about things seen. This bothered me, she was her best friend and she held back when her best friend was falling apart. Once again, I got over it.
The book is filled with so many hot guys I needed a fan to cool me while reading it. I am not one for love triangles and wish there would have not been one but alas there is, and I got over it. I really could understand why Rayla would have a hard time choosing, so much hotness!
Very awesome read. It did have a few flaws as mentioned but the story was so good, I got over it. I will abso-posi-tutely read the rest of the series.
Character Interview with Zach-Lord of Space by Christie Rich
So now I’m here by myself taking in the worn wood floor and comfy couch that is nearly eating me whole. I don’t have time to notice anything else before footsteps bang in the hall and just like that my palms turn sweaty. I wipe them on my jeans and stand up. When he walks into the room, I’m overcome with his presence. It’s not just that he’s handsome. He is that and more with his tall frame, dark hair, and dreamy eyes. I’ve never seen a man like him in person. It’s in the way he carries himself, like he’s royalty or something. I give him a grin and he smiles in return.
His smile is so open it surprises me. He’s taller than I imagined him. At five feet two I barely reach his armpits. I cock my head back, feeling like I’m sixteen all over again meeting John Stockton outside the Salt Palace on a cold winter night. Zach is tall enough to play basketball, but somehow I doubt he makes time for it. I extend my hand. “Hi,” I say. “It’s so good to finally meet you, Zach. I’ve got tons of questions for you.”
ZACH: He takes my hand and gives one solid pump before he lets go. He motions for me to sit, and he takes the chair opposite me. He gives me a grin that melts my socks. His deep voice fries them. “I was going to say my pleasure, lass, but seeing as you’ve just put me on edge, I’ll save that for later.”
CHRISTIE: I smirk at him. “You don’t like answering questions, do you?”
ZACH: He laughs, and the sound reverberates in the small space. “That’s an easy one,” he says. “No.”
CHRISTIE: His easy manner is not what I’m used to when I write him. I have a feeling he’s not going to like my questions, but I dive in. “Exactly why are you so cryptic? You could have been honest with Rayla from the beginning. Why lie to her?”
ZACH: After giving me a steel trap of a stare, he blinks and says, “You should know.”
CHRISTIE: I smile at him, ignoring his rugged features and my nerves. Just like Rayla, I’d love to paint him. She’s a much better artist than I am, though. “You’re evading again. It’s not like I made you. I only know what you tell me.”
ZACH: His dark brows raise. “Good to know,” he says.
CHRISTIE: It takes me less than a second to catch his inference. “Hang on a minute there, buddy. Are you implying you’re keeping secrets from me?” I scoff. “You wouldn’t even have a story if it wasn’t for me.”
ZACH: His striking features turn incredulous. “I’ve always had a story whether you told it or not.”
CHRISTIE: I shake my head, trying to remember what I was going to ask him. Who’s on edge now? “Getting back on topic,” I say, giving him what I hope is a genuine smile. “Are you going to answer my question?”
ZACH: He sighs. “Fine, lass, I’ll give it a go. You see, I’m not proud of how I treated my first bondmate, and I haven’t had a real one since. I didn’t want Rayla to be afraid of me, so I set about wooing her the old-fashioned way. I’ve never lied to her. Fae can’t lie, by the way.”
CHRISTIE: I want to scoff at him again, but I keep my, “ha!” to myself. “You seem rather attached to a woman that has been dead for centuries. Why haven’t you let go of Faine if you want Rayla so badly?”
ZACH: His strong jaw clenches. “She became everything to me. I hated letting her go. I hated what I was, but most of all, I hated how I treated her for so long. It’s hard to deal with what I’ve been. The truth is I only let her go because I had to.”
CHRISTIE: Okay, so maybe not the best thing to bring up. I shift in my chair and try another approach. This question is pure curiosity on my part. “You told Rayla she affected you more than any other Elemental you’d ever known. Since you say you can’t lie, I have to assume that means you are more attracted to Rayla than you were to Faine?”
ZACH: He lifts his chin. “That’s not a question.”
CHRISTIE: I smile. He’s getting to me, and I’m supposed to be the one in charge here. “Okay. You got me. But this is: “Are you more attracted to Rayla than you were to Faine?”
ZACH: He glances away, and I suddenly wonder why he can’t meet my stare. “Rayla is the most powerful Elemental I’ve ever felt. Her power calls to me in a way I can’t fight. I’m helpless when I’m around her.”
CHRISTIE: Interesting. “So, that’s a yes?”
ZACH: He shakes his head at me as his eyes laser into mine. “Yes,” he says, but it sounds like a slither. He’s clearly not comfortable answering these types of questions, but I’m on a role. I need to know what I’m about to ask him.
CHRISTIE: “If that’s true, I don’t understand your continued attachment to Faine.”
ZACH: He stares at his worn out loafers and his eyes grow distant, but his mouth hardens. “She is my past. Having spent so much time in your realm, I’ve learned a few things. Winston Churchill said, ‘Those that fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.’ I assure you I will not be repeating that part of my past.”
CHRISTIE: I’m not exactly happy with his answer, but I’m afraid to push him anymore. He might just kick me out of here. So I move on. “Speaking of your past. What exactly happened between you and your sister, Ainessa? Oh, and why does she insist on calling you Ammon?”
ZACH: He hesitates then he’s looking straight at me with those strange, mesmerizing eyes that seem to reflect every color of blue I’ve ever seen and some I haven’t. I could stare at them all day. “My sister has a way with people,” he says, breaking the spell he has me under. “She can make you believe you want to follow her. There was a time when she had complete control of me…a time I would rather forget. When I managed to break her bond, she had convinced the council to make her queen of Faeresia. Ainessa in a leadership role is not a good thing. She cares not for anything but her own selfish desires. I set about undoing the damage she had wrought, and she has never forgiven me for taking her kingdom away from her. She calls me Ammon because she knows I don’t want to be that person anymore. She is trying to bring back a part of me I hate.”
CHRISTIE: Wow, I can’t believe he answered that. I fumble with my words as I try to remember my follow up question. This is almost as important as me knowing why she hates him so much. “How did you get her out of your mind if she had complete control of you?”
ZACH: He shifts in his seat as if he is uncomfortable. I know the feeling. “Will is one of the strongest forces in the Universe. It governs our existence, especially in regard to your world. One can only impose will on someone else for so long. Using that kind of power takes a toll on a person. My sister is no exception. She sought to rule instead of lead, which was her ultimate mistake.”
CHRISTIE: “That’s kind of funny because you seemed to impose your will on Rayla without any qualms at all.”
ZACH: His long fingers curl around the arms on his chair, and I suddenly wonder if he’s wishing it were my neck. “There is a difference between imposing will and compulsion. I cannot force Rayla to do something she is not capable of doing. I could not make her kill herself, for instance. Compulsion merely speeds up the process of connection; where love is concerned compulsion is particularly helpful. She feels the love she would have for me if she were able to get to know me. Compulsion takes away impression and only connection remains.”
CHRISTIE: “That’s deep—and very confusing. No wonder Rayla doesn’t know what to do.”
ZACH: He leans forward in his chair, folding his hands at his lap. “That is where you are wrong. Rayla knows what to do. She is merely unwilling to admit it.”
CHRISTIE: I look away from his intense scrutiny, and fumble with my keys. “Okay then. I have one more question for you, Zach. Why do you want Rayla?”
ZACH: He gives me a lilting laugh. “That’s like asking why I love to watch the sunset. There are no words for what she does to me. I love her and I intend to make her mine.” He stands up. “I’m sorry to cut this short, but I have business to attend. Fexlie will let you out.”
CHRISTIE: “Wait!” I yell at his back. “I still have questions to ask you.” He doesn’t even turn around. I am unceremoniously dismissed. Fexlie zips into the room and leads me to the door then gives me a quick goodbye. As I climb into my car, I gaze up at the weatherworn farmhouse before I look to the sky, wondering if Styx is out there somewhere. He’s another one I’d love to interview, but tracking down a fire-breathing pegasus is much harder than it sounds.
I grew up daydreaming about fairytales, and my love for discovering new worlds has never died. I am not one of those writers who always knew I would write. I thought that was what other people did until one day a few years ago, I took a challenge from a friend and typed my first words. My journey has been wonderful, and I cannot imagine a day where I would ever give up writing now. My love for reading is what fueled my imagination in the first place and still does. When I am not writing or reading, I am enjoying family time with my husband and two children. We live in a quiet community under the Wellsville mountains in Utah, and I am so thankful for the rich life I have been blessed with.