Title: Shadow Wings (The Darkest Drae Book 2)
Authors: Raye Wagner & Kelly St. Clare
Date of Publication: February 8, 2018
Length: 350 pages
Genre: Fantasy Romance
Audience: Teen & Young Adult
Collective Favorite Quote: “Eating habits? That’s putting cannibalism mildly.”
Sensitivities: Violence, Intimacy, and Language
Other Books in the Series: Blood Oath (The Darkest Drae Book 1) and Black Crown (The Darkest Drae Book 3)
Disclaimer: There may be some spoilers in our detailed banter below:
Hello readers! Can you believe it’s been 1 year since starting our blog?
Today we will be reviewing Shadow Wings (The Darkest Drae Book 2) by author Raye Wagner & Kelly St. Clare.
Please see above for more details on the book.
“I will never be controlled again.
A manipulative dragon shifter. A sexy phaetyn prince. Me? I shouldn’t even exist.
With peace established in Verald, I should be free; Lord Tyrrik is liberated from his blood oath, after all. But the freedom in Verald is an illusion. If I remain, destruction will surely follow.
As soon as I come into my powers, the blood-thirsty emperor of Draecon will know. Even now, he is hunting me.
When a Phaetyn prince arrives promising safety, the solution seems perfect. A little too perfect. But is the objective of our group security or something more? Because everyone is telling me what my goals should be.
Who do you trust when everyone has lied to you?
Should I listen with my head – or my heart?
I might not get a choice.”
There is a lot of development among the main characters, what do you think of their growth?
Bridgette – I love the character development throughout the three books in The Darkest Drae series. There are so many elements at work and things are slowly uncovered throughout the journey. Each character is so complex and I was able to feel a connection with so many various characters because of the detail and thought put into their development, especially in this second installment of the series. Readers will find this second book a wonderful surprise because if one thing is certain, things can not remain the same.
Amy – I think the growth in this series is so well done. I love how each character grows and faces their fears and just comes to terms with everything thrown at them.
Claire – Now that the dragon is out of the bag, we watch the soap-making human girl transform into a gem-hoarding dragon shifter. This transformation goes beyond physical and metaphorical growth as Ryn tips the scales (pun intended) in overcoming her past trauma and sets out with a new purpose. This was refreshing to read. Of course there’s Tyrrick, the fantastic beast who knows where to find them. He finally owns up to his feelings for Ryn and is, naturally, horribly wounded. He was on track to become the fantastic deceased for a while there. Nonetheless, I enjoyed the growth many of the main characters experienced and found this story offered a lot more knowledge, world-building, and perspective.
What do you think of Phaetynville?
Bridgette- This brought about another level of the world overall for readers to delve into and explore. I found Pheytonville to be intriguing and full of its own drama. There could be an entire series of books to cover the history of this land and the people. There were characters who emerge from this area I love to hate and others I admire for their strength. Needless to say, there is a little bit for everyone in Phaetynville.
Amy- I thought the way the people had trees to tell their story was so unique and I loved that Ryn was able to find a little more about herself. The craziness that went on with the Queen was a nice twist. There was plenty of drama in this little neck of the woods and kept me interested the whole time!
Claire- Don’t get me wrong, the journey to the Zivost Forest was intense and edge of your seat dramatic but upon their arrival to this land of Phaetyn hiding under a barrier that protects them from the evils of the world. I liked the diversion of attention to different kinds of people because it added another layer of depth to the plot and history of this world. This portion of the plot offered some more intrigue but I don’t think it compares to the extra shot of espresso the first book provided with all the torture. I now realize that makes me sound slightly psychotic. Moving on…
There is significantly less violence in this installment compared to the first. Rather, there is a heavy focus on Ryn’s transformation and world building. Did you like this plot focus?
Bridgette- I love the shift in the focus for the plot in this second book of the series. I felt like it was necessary. I love a bit of violence and intrigue, yet I understand the importance of building up a series with dynamic foci for the readers. This is a wonderful bridge of a book to bring together the violence of the first and the resolution readers seek in the third. A great deal of background information and general understanding of why things are the way they are begin to unfold in this amazing book.
Amy- I really enjoyed the plot focus in this book. Getting more details about Ryn and Tyrrick was perfect. I fell more in love with this series with every page that I turned.
Claire- As previously mentioned, this book has some depressing themes but it is a nice (okay, perhaps nice isn’t the most appropriate adjective) change of pace from the brutish and wicked maltreatment of the first novel. I admired Ryn’s perseverance in the face of adversity as she finds the will to move forward on a mission for safety. Paired with her transformation and quest to understand both sides of her nature, the authors presented this plight with detail and intrigue and an appreciated dose of sarcasm.
Would you be Phaeytyn or Dragon?
Bridgette- I would be a dragon all the way. I love the idea of being able to transform into a dragon with beautiful scales and hoarding all sorts of goodies in a cave. I would live there all day, preferably with my dragon partner. I think there is a glamour to the lives of the Phaetyn which I would have no qualms about leaving behind for a life in the skies.
Amy- I am going to be a rebel and hope to be a Ryn and Tyrrick baby so I can have the best of both worlds! I mean who doesn’t want to fly and grow your own potatoes!! Think of all the French fries we could have!
Claire- It was a lot of fun to follow Ryn’s transformation into the majestic dragon shifter who offered some hilarious insight into the world of obsession over shiny and gem-like things. Even Tyrrick has a horde of treasure he’s been casually saving for her. Clearly, dragons are where it’s at. And by it’s, I mean massive treasure. I would want to be a dragon so I can collect a bunch of expensive rubies and then take a permanent vacation to Barbados.
This is the second book in the series, how does it compare to the first?
Bridgette- As stated in a previous answer, I feel like this was an excellent book to bring together the elements of the first book which provided shock and awe to the elements necessary in the final book providing closure for the series. This book provides an abundance of detail to the world building overall and the characters themselves. I think each book, the first and second, have elements which make them unique and necessary. However, if I had to choose a favorite between the first and second, I would choose the second because of the building of those relationships and the sheer devastation I experienced by the end of book two.
Amy- I have to say I absolutely love book one, but book two really lets you see these characters. I love how everything comes together and the funny quirks that Ryn starts picking up due to her dragon side. We get to see this other side of Tyrrick that wasn’t there in book one.
Claire- Similar to my journey from algebra to pre-calc, this installment is much more complex than the first. Ryn, Tyrrik, and Dyter’s mission to arrive at the forest presented many obstacles with several dangerous situations that packed so much action into the book. Ryn literally goes from rags to riches, skin to scales, sarcastic bite to airborne flight. Watching her fight her growing attrition to Tyrrick, fight the evil emperor, and truly mold into her own creature was awesome.
Thanks for reading. Comment below if you have read Shadow Wings (The Darkest Drae Book 2) by author Raye Wagner & Kelly St. Clare or if you are going to put it on your TBR!
Disclosure: We are in no way affiliated with the author and are not being compensated for this review.
Amy & Bridgette & Claire
Bridgette’s Rating: 5
Claire’s Rating: 5