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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
Blood of the Key is a superb work of fantasy fiction, adventure, and intrigue penned by author duo Amanda Muratoff and Kayla Mansur. Forming the second novel of the Berylian Key Trilogy (also part of the Pantracia Chronicles), this fully cinematic and atmospheric story picks up where Embrace of the Shade left off. We continue the tumultuous relationship between Kin and Amarie, even as Amarie flees from the Shade, yet still desires to know more about him. She connects with Talon, an enigmatic auer, who can give her the answers she seeks. Meanwhile, Kin struggles between his duties to those who afforded him power, and his desire to pursue Amarie further.
Powerful and enriching from the opening scenes right through to the end, fans of fantasy, epic worlds, and paranormal romances will find all that they seek in the works of author duo Amanda Muratoff and Kayla Mansur. The novel confronts its readers with a double sense of sheer quality coming from both the stellar worldbuilding of the fantasy realms, their lores and practices, but also from the central relationship and character development of Kin and Amarie. Neither loses face to the other as this becomes a story of both relationships and the wider world, where secrets of origin have been uncovered, and the fallout and further discoveries fuel a fantastic plotline with plenty of action and thrills. Overall, Blood of the Key overcomes the common pitfalls of many second novels to produce a highly recommended, high-quality fantasy read for adult fans.