The Serpent and the Wings of Night (Crowns of Nyaxia #1) by Carissa Broadbent | Review

Posted February 27, 2023 by Cristina (Girl in the Pages) in Books, Reviews / 0 Comments

The Serpent and the Wings of Night (Crowns of Nyaxia #1) by Carissa Broadbent | ReviewThe Serpent and the Wings of Night (Crowns of Nyaxia, #1) by Carissa Broadbent
Also by this author: The Ashes and the Star-Cursed King (Crowns of Nyaxia, #2)
on August 30, 2022
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance
Pages: 532 •Format: E-BookSource: Kindle Unlimited

The adopted human daughter of the Nightborn vampire king, Oraya carved her place in a world designed to kill her. Her only chance to become something more than prey is entering the Kejari: a legendary tournament held by the goddess of death herself.

But winning won’t be easy amongst the most vicious warriors from all three vampire houses. To survive, Oraya is forced to make an alliance with a mysterious rival.

Everything about Raihn is dangerous. He is a ruthless vampire, an efficient killer, an enemy to her father’s crown… and her greatest competition. Yet, what terrifies Oraya most of all is that she finds herself oddly drawn to him.
But there’s no room for compassion in the Kejari. War for the House of Night brews, shattering everything that Oraya thought she knew about her home. And Raihn may understand her more than anyone – but their blossoming attraction could be her downfall, in a kingdom where nothing is more deadly than love.

Have you ever gotten that feeling when you finish a book that you just know it’s going to make it into your top ten (or even five) of the year? That’s exactly how I felt upon finishing The Serpent and the Wings of Night, and I now have a raging book hangover thanks to it!

First off, I want to address that the comp titles for this novel are ACOTAR and FB&A, and I’d also argue a dash of hunger games. And while there are similarities, I think this book does an amazing job at holding its own and creating a very unique fantasy realm. The story follows human protagonist Oraya, who is recused from battle rubble by the vampire king of the House of Night (Vincent) when she is a toddler, and is raised at the center of the dangerous vampire court as his daughter. I immediately was intrigued by their relationship, as he genuinely seems to care for her and has taught her to be ruthless and dangerous in her own ways so she can survive in this tumultuous world designed to kill her (honestly he gave me Carlisle vibes). Together they have concocted a plan for Oraya to enter the Kejari, a dangerous, Hunger Games-esque competition that takes place every 100 years. If Oraya wins, she can ask the goddess Nyaxia for one wish and can finally use it to shed her human vulnerabilities and gain power.

While a bulk of the novel takes place during the competition,  I still felt as though I had a clear and fleshed out picture of the world building, as the contestants are allowed to leave the Moon Palace (where they are being held) at night. Therefore, as a reader we still get to see Oraya explore some of the kingdom and keep somewhat up to date with the political climate and court intrigue. Additionally, the competitors are from a variety of different houses/vampire species so throughout the competition readers get a sense of the different alliances and tensions that exist in the world, as well as the different types of magic there are.

I believe this book is billed as a “romantasy” but I was pleasantly surprised that the romance was a slow burn and really only picked up in the last third or so of the novel, and it really, truly felt like a strong fantasy world that could stand on its own (rather than just as a vehicle for a romance novel). I don’t want to spoil too much, but the romance felt real and authentic since it did slowly develop over the course of the novel (which I believe takes place over a few months) and didn’t eclipse other, more dire events (such as the brutality of some of the trials of the competition). There were also several MASSIVE plot twists at the end that I did NOT see coming, and I really enjoy when a book can surprise me (and looking back I can now see there were clues peppered throughout the novel- I’d love to do a reread and see what else I can pick up on!)

Other Things I Was Obsessed With:

  • “There she is.” –> literally SOBBING
  • “Little Serpent” –> Sobbing for different reasons
  • Vampires! When is the last time we got a decent vampire series after the craze in the mid 2000s?
  • No instalove!
  • Mische!!
  • Interesting and well thought out backstories for the characters
  • Twists that are shocking but actually make so much sense!

Overall: Honestly, I am so obsessed with this book and I believe I saw the author state it’s going to be 6 books (!!!) on IG and I cannot WAIT to dive into all of them! There are SO many directions the series could go in based on the way the book ended, along with potentially some of my favorite tropes View Spoiler » This is some seriously high quality fantasy writing.


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