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“Perilous quests give rise to heroes. And broken songs call for Chosen Ones to be mended.”

Breaker of FatesMixing the rich world building, hysterical humour, and queer messiness of A Chorus of Dragons with the deeply emotional trauma and healing themes of The Tithenai Chronicles, Breaker of Fates is a brand new own-voices queer epic dragon fantasy that will make your queer heart scream and drag you across the entire spectrum of emotions!

Roderick and Keeva, childhood best friends turned rivals, are unexpectedly reunited for the first time in over 15 years when they realise they have been dating the same guy. Or, more accurately, the same pansexual transgender dragon boyfriend, who just happens to be struggling to transform due to his self-doubt. So, no, they do in fact not know he is a dragon.
And if all that wasn’t complicated enough, a song from the gods has now been stolen, and the fate of their world lies in their hands. They might not be heroes or Chosen Ones, but if they can face their traumatic shared past and learn to forgive each other, and themselves, they might just have a chance of keeping it all from burning down.

Now, let me start this review off by saying that Breaker of Fates is not a romantasy or erotic fantasy, contrary to the vibes the cover might give off. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely adore this artwork, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t expecting some explicit content. Though to my huge surprise and relief, there was none of that. But what exactly IS hidden inside these pages then? Well, I am glad you asked, get ready for some gushing. And please do take a shot every time I say ‘queer’. You’re welcome.

Breaker of Fates transports you into an unapologetically queer-normative and delightfully diverse world, where all types of genders, sexualities, pronoun preferences, disabilities, races, and cultural backgrounds are represented and embraced. Though all that is not to say that this story glamourises queerness, quite the opposite in fact. Here, the queers are nuanced. They are both heroes and villains, and we get to explore queerness in all its beauty and tragedy through the eyes of our lovable yet deeply flawed protagonists.

I absolutely loved following each of these three hot messes, with the emphasis being on HOT there. I mean, my queer panic quite positively shot through the roof, and I am not even ashamed to admit that I was swooning over every single one of these charismatic characters at one point or another. Especially Zhean, they can live rent free in my heart, and I would very much like to know where I can sign up for a best friend like that?!

Breaker of Fates is just filled with some of the most beautiful and painfully realistic relationships, be they romantic, platonic, familial, sexual, or something confusingly beautiful in between all that. The banter is bantering, the found family vibes are off the charts, and the side characters get just as much time to shine as the protagonists. All of which is exactly why I was so deeply emotionally invested, and why the stakes felt so incredibly high.

As they all embark upon their quests, these characters quickly learn that they will have to face some ugly truths about themselves, which so organically brings forth the deep themes of self-discovery, grief, trauma, forgiveness, and hope. They are all faced with their own demons, both figuratively and literally, and seeing them cope (or not cope) was tragically beautiful. And I ultimately really appreciated how the tension in any relationship never came from any romantic conflict/miscommunication, but rather a personal hurdle that they had trouble to overcome.

I also thought it was quite brilliant how Keeva and Roderick’s past relationship and shared trauma was explored through some effective and moving flashbacks, which really helped explain their current difficult dynamic. The authors really nailed capturing that raw human emotion, and I honestly just loved all the heavy gut punches I suffered along the way.

If it wasn’t already clear, Breaker of Fates is a deeply character-driven story at its heart, yet that doesn’t mean that the world building or fantasy plot suffer. Yes, there were some little hiccups in the pacing, especially in the middle section, and sometimes characters almost seemed to go backwards in their development at times. But then, we all know that healing is not linear, so that backtracking and frustrating behaviour only made them more realistic and relatable to me.

Ultimately, every single aspect of this story is just perfectly balanced and inextricably linked, which resulted in an incredibly smooth and deeply immersive reading experience for me. I loved every single second of letting myself get lost in this epic world, and absolutely ate up all the little nuggets of history and lore that are so organically woven into the narrative.

Learning about the dragon speakers and dragon culture through Mateo’s perspective really captured my imagination, and I adored the strong bond with his dragon siblings. And in Keeva and Roderick’s POVs, religion and divinity are explored in a very captivating way, with some scenes having an almost ethereal vibe that just fully entranced me. If you like the gods walking among us trope, you’ve come to the right place.

All in all, I am extremely glad I took a complete gamble on Breaker of Fates, because it was quite literally the slow-burn queer epic fantasy of my dreams. While this first instalment in The Broken Song Verse duology tells a beautiful and satisfying contained story, I am very intrigued by the threads that are yet to be tied up. There were some very exciting revelations in the final chapters that left me desperate for more in the best way possible, so I am counting down the days until the second book comes out. Which, fortunately for me, isn’t too long off!

If you’re looking for a story that offers a refreshing and unapologetically queer twist on epic dragon fantasy, then you have to check out Breaker of Fates. Dangerously seductive and effortlessly funny characters, complicated feelings, beautiful polyamourous love, found family vibes to die for, and raw explorations of queer grief, trauma, and healing; what’s not to love? 

Thank you to the authors for providing me with an eARC in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Breaker of Fates

Breaker of Fates

Breaker of Fates

Breaker of Fates

Breaker of Fates

Breaker of Fates

Breaker of Fates

Breaker of Fates

Esmay Rosalyne

Esmay is a self-proclaimed professional book devourer from The Netherlands. While (dark) fantasy will always have her heart, she is also a big indie/self-pub enthusiast and will probably read anything if the premise sounds intriguing enough. Or, you know, if it promises complete emotional destruction. When not reading books, she is probably reviewing books, talking about books, or watching videos of fellow bookworms talking about books.

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