Book Review: The Hunter and the Mage (The Raven and the Dove #2)

Title: The Hunter and the Mage

Author: Kaitlyn Davis

Pub. Date: September 21, 2020

Pages: 495

Pub: Amazon Digital Services

Genre: YA Fantasy Romance Retelling

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5


Return to the world of The Raven and the Dove, where winged people rule the skies, a lost kingdom lives at sea, and two star-crossed lovers hold the fate of each in their palms. Perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas, Sabaa Tahir, and Leigh Bardugo!

A mage written in prophecy…

When Lyana wakes in the Sea of Mist, adventure is the first thing on her mind. But between her unruly new magic and an unyielding young king, the world below comes with more responsibility than she ever dreamed. An entire civilization exists within the fog, and its survival depends entirely on her.

A hunter forged in blood…

Adrift at sea on a ship full of strangers, Rafe fights to cope with his new reality. He’ll do anything to return to the sky and the people he left behind. When a surprising offer comes his way, he instantly accepts, sparing no time to consider the consequences.

Loyalties are tested and an ancient war begins anew…

With rebellion in her heart, Cassi defies her king and befriends the prince she’s been ordered to kill. Oblivious to the threat, Xander welcomes her into his inner circle, determined to rescue his mate. As one works to help and the other to hinder, an ancient enemy stirs, forcing Cassi to choose between trusting the man who broke her heart and turning her back on everything she’s ever known. 

This will be a spoiler free review. I listened to the audiobook via Audible. You can check out my spoiler free review of The Raven and the Dove here. I’ve been impatiently waiting for the audio to drop for this book, so I’m thrilled it finally did! I enjoyed this overall – the ending was edge of my seat fantastic, though it took a little while for me to get invested.

I think in part, I didn’t really remember a lot of what happened in the first book. It’s been a while since I listened to it, and while I enjoyed that book as well, it was months ago. Events from book one did eventually start resurfacing as I progressed further into this second book. It definitely sucks you into the world and keeps you captivated.

But even with those elements – I found it hard to focus. Between not remembering much from book 1 to really not liking Malek – I struggled.

I’m not a Malek fan, and my strong dislike for the man made me borderline want to stop reading. He’s 100% a manipulative asshole, and his slight charm did nothing to endear him to me. I saw through his bullshit early on, and I kind of just wanted to drown him in the ocean. I’m not a fan. I took an insane amount of pleasure at his crumbling plan and revelation at the end of the book.

As for the other characters, I really only found myself caring about Rafe. That poor boy. He needs to be protected at all costs. He was the only one in this book whose choices didn’t annoy me at any one point. He is very much the victim in all of this. He needs a hug and I’m so glad he finds friends who look out for him.

Then there’s Xander and Cassi – yeah, they’re kinda cute together, but they’re also dumb as hell. Lots of emotions between the two of them, and it’s a mess. I think in almost any other setting I’d be all over their dynamic because I love how they complement each other. But in this, I just want to reach in and shake the both of them. I also lowkey hate the things getting in the way of their obvious feelings.

Which leads me to Lyana. I’m going to be honest; she wasn’t my favorite in this book. For someone so confident and sure of what she wants, she’s naïve as shit a lot of the time. She lets herself get manipulated quite often. She’s also so glaringly the Chosen One – and no, I’m not talking about the prophecy within the book. I mean, she’s got three guys – and different obligations to each of them. It’s kind of annoying. I know she only has romantic feelings for one of them, cares about the other, and is decidedly undecided about the other – but come on. She makes these grand sweeping promises to each of them, that nearly contradict each other. Whereas I really liked her in the first book, she wasn’t my favorite in this one. Towards the end she starts to see the light, figure out what she really wants, so that was refreshing. I’m holding out hope for the next book – I think she’s going to deliver and all my qualms will be washed away.

I’m really excited to see what they all do in the next book. Malek is probably having a quarter life crisis and will become more unbearable. Rafe is a cinnamon roll who needs to be protected, but dude’s also a badass motherfucker. Xander is going to be fierce as hell, Cassi is…well, I guess we’ll find out, but she’s going to cause some chaos. And Lyana is going to show the world what the fuck she can do.

Also, that little reveal about the god stones…I feel like I should have seen in coming, but oooohhh it’s such a great element. It’s the missing piece and the show down that is bound to happen is going to be fucking epic. I cannot wait. I was legit texting a friend who has already read this screaming about this little reveal. 

This was definitely a really good second installment into this series. Thank god the next one comes out really soon – but I still might wait for the audiobook. I’ve done both so far with audio – I think it’ll be weird to not hear the characters – but we’ll see. Anticipation might win out lol. If you haven’t yet read The Raven and the Dove what are you waiting for? You need to meet Rafe. I promise he’ll steal your heart. I just want to hug him. He’s too precious.

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