• La Crimson Femme

Review: The Bright and Breaking Sea by Chloe Neill

★★★★ @chloeneill #TheBrightandBreakingSea #bookreview

This book was on my TBR pile and I finally dived into it. Let's just say, I went in totally cold and forgot why I put this on my list as well as which author wrote. The first two chapters confused me greatly because I had this mixed with another author and series. I had to go look at the blurb and then verify that I didn't miss reading a book before going back to the book. If you are a bit lost when you first read this book, don't be alarmed. You didn't miss anything and there doesn't seem to be a book prior to this one.


Once my brain let go of what I thought this book was going to be about, I thoroughly enjoyed it. This new series is a different direction than I am used to from Ms. Neill. There is magic and no paranormal creatures. Instead, we have people who are gifted to feel and be able to be in-tuned with the different elements. I liked this world where it is set in aristocratic society in possibly years 1700s to 1800s with monarchies, allies, cold war and spies. I also love stories with ships that are kind of like pirate ships.


Kit Brightling is the main character in this story and she is the captain of a very special ship. Her role is also very different than what most people believe. This story is all about her - how she is the Queen's secret weapon as well as how she uses her magic. This mission to rescue an agent and then find a war machine lets the reader learn more about Kit and how she came to be. I found her family of the heart to be interesting and heartwarming. I must admit, I love her sister who invents things that go boom.


Whilst this story does focus more on the plot, there is a bit of a romantic element to it. This frienemies to lover theme is well done. Rian Grant is not just another Beau Monde. He has seen war and been in the front lines. Still, he makes assumptions about Kit just as she does to him. Their partnership at the Queen's behest allows them to find common grounds... grudgingly. I liked their tentative interaction. Their slow build to become friends and respecting each other's abilities works nicely. It is pleasant to see a romance that isn't an instalove or instalust.


This new series has captured my attention and I cannot wait to see what happens next. I hope there will be more missions and more importantly, more magical mischief. This paranormal fantasy is recommended to reader who enjoy historical settings mixed with fantasy themes.