Monday, July 1, 2013

Endure (The Protector #4) by M.R. Merrick ~ Review & Giveaway

Welcome to the Endure tour!

As part of this tour, there will be a letter scavenger hunt.

Each day, a different blog will be posting a review of Endure and a letter.

Collect the letters until July 16th

Unscramble them to gain entry to GIVEAWAY for 

$50 Amazon Gift Card!

There's another giveaway going on too! That one is posted below and can be entered every day at every blog!  Enter to win the complete series, eBooks and swag packs!

Today's letter?

 Source:  Received eBook from the author in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Book Description:

Wrapped in darkness and woven with defeat, every action Chase has taken since being exiled from the Circle has been met with a devastating response. Now he's been burdened with a quest that seems impossible, and he needs to evolve into something more, something greater than he ever thought he could be.
Armed with magic, friendship, and an unbreakable will, Chase must build an army and find a weapon capable of defeating the ultimate evil. But he knows that nothing great comes without sacrifice. Blessed by the very gods who have abandoned him and carrying the fate of all the worlds on his shoulders, Chase Williams is about find out just how much one man can endure.

My Thoughts:

5 stars - Brilliant ending to an awesome series

You may remember that I wasn't speaking to Mr. Merrick when I got done with book three, Release.  He crushed my heart in that book.  Two things came out of that.  First, it became clear just how much I cared about the characters in this series.  And second, even though I forgave him and talked to him again I wasn't done being upset.  That is until I read THIS book.  He is totally forgiven.  Why?  So many reasons and I'll try to be spoiler free here.

Let me start by saying that my first reading love is fantasy.  I fell in love with fantasy as a teen.  But so many fantasy books have me lost with so much detail that I can't keep things straight.  That's when Urban Fantasy become my favorite.  I love the grounding that I feel in it.  M.R. Merrick has really done an incredible job of blending the two genres I love most together to make a unique story that I love.

Next, I have to say that I grumbled at Mr. Merrick about the lack of kissing in his first book.  He laughed at me and told me it was a part of the story but not all of it.  He is so right.  Here's the thing about the romance in this series.  It's there but it's subtle and that makes it more real to me.  This story takes place over a relatively short period of time.  The relationship between Chase and Rayna takes the whole series to develop.  That's real.  That's avoiding the instant love thing.  And there is this point near the end of Endure where it hit me.  A sacrifice is about to be made.  I am absolutely devastated it and I realize it's because their relationship is real that this is affecting me this way.  Now I can't say any more about this without being spoilery but I will say that it was brilliant. 

Okay, the reason the author is forgiven?  It's because the pain that I felt in book three was necessary.  As I read Endure, I kept thinking this couldn't have happened it that awful terrible thing in book three didn't happen.  Plus there were these little moments of peace that were peppered through Endure that let me come to terms with the events of Release.  They were like sweet bits of chocolate treating me as I read along.

As for the characters, I think I've made that clear that I loved them all.  Chase is, of course, my favorite.  I love how he takes the weight of the world on his back and tries to fix things.  I love how he protects those he loves.  I love how he loves deeply and completely.  I love how he figures it out as he goes.  I loved how much he grew over the course of the series.

Rayna is my other favorite.  The girl is badass.  She can kick your behind and walk away before you realize what happened.  But something that came out in this book that really got me was her devotion to Chase.  Her willingness to do whatever was needed to help him, to protect him right back, to love him was incredible.  They had a very balanced relationship and that's just perfect.

The action is just as well written in this last book of the series as in the rest.  This author does an amazing job of painting pictures in my head.  I can see it unfold on the pages as I read.  The epic fantasy tangled with the urban making it a perfect balance of things I get and things I imagine.  His ability to make  the monsters come alive is awesome.  I love to read his books.

The pacing is great.  I read it quickly.  Actually, I've read it more than once.  I was privileged enough to get to beta read for him and then review too.  I enjoyed the second time around just as much as the first.

If you love YA fantasy, either urban or epic, then this is a perfect choice.  If you like the kind of story that you don't want to put down, then this is the perfect choice.  If you like a little romance in the story but not so much that that's all there is, then this is a perfect choice.  Give The Protector Series a read.  Think you're gonna like it.

Series Trailer

About the author:

M.R. Merrick is a Canadian writer, and author of Exiled, the first installment in The Protector Series. Having never traveled, he adventures to far off lands through his imagination and in between cups of coffee. As a music lover and proud breakfast enthusiast, he's usually found at the computer, between a pair of headphones and in front of a large bowl of cereal.

 Exiled is still FREE.

If you haven't started this series, you so should!


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  1. Amazing review Val!!! I just started it this morning and I am already sucked back into the world!! I love this series.

  2. Thanks for the fun post and congrats to MR on the newest release! I think I'd want water :)

  3. If I would have only one element I would pick water to me it is the most important cause all living things require it and thus made so of the other elements

  4. Id choose water because everything needs water. Its essential :)

  5. Fire! The power is incredibly useful and very powerful!

  6. The book sounds excellent, and if I could choose just one elemental magic, I'd have to go with air so that I could use it to make me fly. Thanks!

  7. I'd choose water! It's the perfect element. All things need water :)

  8. Fire. I have always been intrigued by fire (not a pyromaniac, I promise). Thanks for the giveaway!

  9. I loved Rayna! I'm so glad the series ended in such an awesome way, Pal. Great review!

  10. Rayna is so awesome! Love that chick! I have got to make time for this one soon! You also have made me feel better, because I was devastated by Release as well. Great review!

    Teresa @ Readers Live A Thousand Lives

  11. If I had to choose, and I mean had to I would choose water. I love the soothing and healing qualities of water. Water reminds me of love and relaxation!

    I soooo love this series!

  12. I'd be water. Water is unbelievably powerful. I have seen this first hand.

  13. i am aquarius so i would choose water :)
    thx u...

  14. I'd choose fire, I think, followed by water. The series sounds very interesting. Thanks for the chance at the giveaway!

  15. I pick water because all living things need it and it produces air, stops fire and makes things grow on earth

  16. I would definitely choose Fire. There are quite a few GOOD uses with a Fire Element. Staying warm, cooking and Fire would be an awesome weapon!!
    I CANNOT wait to read this series!!! YAY!! I'm so excited that there is another giveaway for this series. I'm crossing my fingers:))) Thank you SO SO MUCH for this very GENEROUS giveaway!!!

  17. While I think it would be more worthwhile to be able to manipulate air, water, or fire, I am an Earth element and I would choose to be able to make things grow. I would make a forest to live in. I would populate the world with trees and hope that the fire elementals didn't burn them down. :)

  18. I definitely need to read this to see how it all ends. Totally a Chase & Rayna fan. I'm glad the pacing picks up in this one. Great review!

    Confessions of a Vi3tBabe
    Deity Island

  19. Water, because i can't stand hot. LOL!!

  20. Earth - I think it would be the strongest yet how does one survive without Air & Water.

  21. Hmm this is so tough! I'm still tossing up between air and water...and maybe fire too!! Hmm, maybe water because it's just so useful in multiple aspects...but air you'd basically be able to FLY :D...and fire you could do alot of things with too...AGH okok water then :P

  22. Water, because water is so calm, just like me :D

  23. Love the review! I think water would be the coolest.