Awakening is the first book in the Awakening Series written by Tayma Tameem. The story began when a lady lying in the middle of a forest returned to her consciousness. She has no memory of what happened, why she’s in a secluded place alone. It dawned on her that she didn’t even know her name. But, something in her mind whispered — Katja. Along the way, the amnesiac lady met a tavern owner named Marius and introduced herself as Katja. Marius offered her a temporary job and shelter. Like the other town’s people, the golden bracelet Katja is wearing has caught his attention. More so, looking at her, one would believe that she doesn’t belong in their peasant community.
One day at the tavern, a group of sailors was in a serious discussion about the wicked Lady Snow — Amara. The woman has killed her kin for the throne, including her eldest sister, Princess Katja. At the mention of that name, intuition told her she’s connected to that family. However, if the news spread that she’s still alive, Katja will be in absolute danger. She has to choose between hiding forever or bringing her newfound friends and family in danger.
The early parts of the story remind me of the movie ‘Frozen’ because of some similarities. Katja and Amara belong to a kingdom (Kingdom of Hale) led by their parents, King Frenar and Queen Esther. Like Elsa (from the movie), Amara possesses a different kind of magic as the Spirit of Winter lies inside her. Through Brikkir, she can summon and manipulate ice. After finally seeing the difference between the two snow ladies, I started to detach the book from the movie. Here, Amara is fighting her inner demon. The princess’s uncontrollable emotions and magical ability will cause so much trouble to the people around her. As soon as hate and anger are triggered, death will ensue.
Awakening revolves around magic, conspiracy, betrayal, and love. Tayma Tameem made sure to give a clear and precise history of the amnesiac lady and her kingdom. There are several characters introduced but, it doesn’t felt overcrowded for me. Their names and background story are also easy to memorize. I’m sure that readers will sympathize with Amara and Katja as the two face their obligations as the heiresses of Hale. Despite being born as women, they grew brave, intelligent, and trained to fight. Furthermore, it has a very clever plot twist and interesting female heroines and villains that the readers will like. The story was told in alternating past and present events.
Awakening is the second book I’ve read from Tayma. The first one was Cat Boss. I can say that the author is good at incorporating family relationships in her stories which will put tears in your eyes. Firstly Amara and Katja’s sisterly relationship. Amara only listens to her eldest sister. Ever since they were kids, Katja spent her life loving and protecting Amara. Another story highlight that will stir your emotions is Katja’s attachment to the old couple, Drakkart and Solange. If you are curious if there’s a romantic angle in the story, the answer is yes. But the story doesn’t revolve so much in it. Katja will meet Marius during her amnesiac phase. In a short period, they have established an emotional connection and trust. The man has a good sense of humor and very likable.
I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. This book is an easy read. I didn’t notice any spelling or grammar errors which means that the book was well edited. There’s nothing I dislike about it. Do read this you are a fantasy lover and who prefers books with no swearwords.