A Promise of Return (The Outlands Pentalogy #3) by Rebecca Crunden – Book Review

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  • Source: Review Copy
  • Pages: 281
  • My Rating: 4.5 stars

Read my review of Book 1 – A Touch of Death and Book 2 – A History of Madness.

A Promise of Return follows the story of Thom Anteros. Thom is Nate’s brother and Catherine’s Complement. Thom left both of them in the first book and break into the Building of Historical Records. He gets arrested and he is later presumed to be dead. This book tells Thom’s story right from when he left his brother and partner.

The book begins in the city of Muntenia where a new character Elara Carlow is introduced. A majority of the events in the book take place in Muntenia. We also finally meet Blaise, Nate’s charming best friend who has been mentioned in the previous books.

Thom fascinated me as much as Nate did. He was similar to him and even Cat in some aspects, but also very different. He was smarter than either of them. He was diplomatic and manipulative. I didn’t know what he was going to do the next moment which kept me on edge. It was a bit scary how calm and smart he was. When he was introduced in the first book, he gave the impression of being a very nice guy and not arrogant, but he isn’t exactly like that. His journey was as rough as Nate and Cat’s has been.

I have grown attached to these characters. The author did a great job of making sure there would be a bond between the characters and the reader. It’s not an easy thing to do that because in many books, while you may like the characters it doesn’t necessarily mean you care about them. The only downside of this (but not actually a bad thing) is that I was scared that they’ll die the next moment.

It’s interesting that the author decided to create a sibling bond that is so incredibly strong. Nate and Thom are soulmates in a sense and they are that person to each other who is the most important to them in the world, and who they couldn’t live without.

Even though I liked focusing on one character’s story throughout, I still would’ve liked a couple of more chapters from Nate and Cat’s perspective. Since the first two books had been only their journey, it felt strange to have a disconnect from them.

The writing of all the books in the series has been good so far, but this was by far my favorite. I loved how deeply the author delved into Thom’s character. That depth was shown beautifully through the writing and narration. I’m trying not to play favorites but for now, Thom is my favorite character in the series.

The world-building in the series is happening gradually. I’m really enjoying that since there is not a lot of information thrown at us or very sudden developments. It’s smooth and constantly keeps a mystery surrounding the story.

It’s tricky to get the middle books in a series right and the author did a great job with this. Just like the previous book, I flew through this one too. This book is a page-turner and I was on the edge of my seat even more than the last book. There were some very unexpected turn of events that made me love this book even more. I didn’t expect this series to be this thrilling and I can’t wait to read more.

Trigger warning – violent situations

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