Review: A Touch of Stone and Snow by Milla Vane

A Touch of Stone and Snow
(A Gathering of Dragons #2)
by Milla Vane
Publisher: Berkley
Publication date: July 21, 2020
Genre: Fantasy Romance

Danger lurks in the western realms. The Destroyer’s imminent return has sent the realms into turmoil as desperate citizens seek refuge—but there’s no safety to be found when demons and wraiths crawl out from the shadows. Even Koth, a northern island kingdom left untouched by the Destroyer a generation past, is besieged by terrors spawned from corrupt magics.

When Lizzan leads the Kothan army against these terrors, only to see her soldiers massacred and to emerge as the only survivor, she is called a coward and a deserter. Shunned from her home, Lizzan now wanders in solitude as a mercenary for hire, until she encounters a group of warriors seeking new alliances with the northern kingdoms—a group that includes Aerax, the bastard prince of Koth, and the man who sent her into exile.

Though they were childhood friends, Aerax cannot allow himself to be close to the only woman who might thwart his treacherous plan to save their island realm. But when a goddess’s demand binds them together, Lizzan and Aerax must find a way to overcome their painful pasts. Or there will be no future for the western realms…



My thoughts…

This was one interesting story. Where the first book felt really slow to me, this one held my interest the entire time. It gave me vibes of Claymore (the anime) and Tarzan. Lizzan used to be a soldier for her people. She was a great warrior and fought many battles. However, one of those battles ended badly and left her as the only survivor. What was supposed to be an army of soldiers attacking a handful of bandits turned out to be an ambush of wraiths that wiped out everyone. However, when she told the council what had happened, they called her a liar, struck her name from the books of their land, and exiled her. For about 10 years she’s wandered the other lands, giving her sword and protection to those who need it. However, with the scar on her face from the battle, and how closely it resembles the scar their goddess gives to those who betray her, not many look to Lizzan with kind eyes. Regardless, she remains true to her oath to fight for those in need, and is hellbent on taking out the demon responsible for the wraiths.

The Tarzan part comes from Aerax. Aerax is the bastard son of the king. However, with the plague that went through their kingdom, he went from being no one, nameless, to being the prince of Koth. I’m not quite sure how he got this way, but he’s a bit untamed. He’s sceene (in the book… so technically I pictured) walking around in animal skins around his waste. He hunts with his snow cat (which is really a saber tooth tiger), and he literally rips the throats out of peoples throats when in battle… with his teeth! The man is pretty feral in the way he hunts and fights. Not to mention he is an excellent tracker. Between his cat and him, they can find anyone, and that’s exactly what they plan to do when it comes to Lissan.

So yeah. These two knew each other growing up. They were friends, and then turned lovers as they grew up. However, when she was exiled, he didn’t stand up for her, even though he knew that she told the truth. So, to say she holds a grudge against him is an understatement. Which is why when Caeb comes out of nowhere when she’s escorting a convoy of people, she hightails it out of there, because anywhere Caeb is, Aerax isn’t far behind. Unfortunately, when Lissan beseeches the Goddess to give her a quest so that her name will no longer bear the burden and cause her family shame, she’s tasked to keep Aerax safe. Needless to say, Lissan is not too happy with her quest, but she ends up traveling with Aerax and his group as they try to find nations/territories to help them fight against the Destroyer.

There was just so much going on in this story. You have the Destroyer which is the big boss (yes, I reverted to game talk), then you have the demon that has been releasing wraiths and throwing out dark magic left and right, the history between our two MC’s, the screwed up ways of Koth, and everything these characters have to do for personal redemption as well as to protect those they care about. Every time I blinked something was happening. Whether it was the steaming romance, the fantasy element of demons summoning wraiths, supernatural saber tooth tigers, the battle scenes as they just try to get to one location, or all the hurdles they face just trying to survive. I tell you what, this book was so full of awesomeness. Where the last book left me a bit bored, this book had me gripped in its clutches until the end. I really hope that this series is turned into a TV show because it would make an amazing series.


Favorite quote…

“Whatever you need to keep this world from battering you into the mud, I will provide it. This night, I will protect you as you sleep. And the next, if you still need it. I will shield you from those who call you a curse, and who have taken your every hop. Until the morning comes when your heart is full again, and you see that there are so many more options left.”


Previous reviews from A Gathering of Dragons
A Heart of Blood and Ashes




One Thought on “Review: A Touch of Stone and Snow by Milla Vane

  1. That does sound like it would make a great tv show.

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