Wings Once Cursed and Bound - Review
*I received a physical and audio copy from Sourcebooks Casablanca and Dreamscape Media via NetGalley. All reviews are my own.*
Okay, guys. I will admit defeat and say the cover of Wings Once Cursed and Bound by Piper J. Drake got me. Between the illustrious graphics littered with shiny green emeralds and gold headdresses/feathers and the fact that it was a limited-time Read Now on NetGalley, I got sucked into FOMO and grabbed this book. I did skim over the synopsis, but from what I gathered, it sounded like something I could warm up to. A mythology retelling with a side quest of secret artifact-keeping societies? Sure, I'll bite!
"My wings unbound, I am the Thai bird princess
And no matter the cost,
I will be free.
Bennet Andrews represents a secret organization of supernatural beings dedicated to locating and acquiring mythical objects, tucking them safely away where they cannot harm the human race. When he meets Peeraphan Rahttana, it's too late—she has already stepped into The Red Shoes, trapped by their curse to dance to her death.
But Bennet isn't the only supernatural looking for deadly artifacts. And when the shoes don't seem to harm Peeraphan, he realizes that he'll have to save her from the likes of creatures she never knew existed. Bennett sweeps Peeraphan into a world of myth and power far beyond anything she ever imagined. There, she finds that magic exists in places she never dreamed—including deep within herself."
I ended up DNFing the book at 42%, and I'm amazed I got that far. I was trying my best to follow along with the audio version featuring the voice of Cindy Kay, but I was bored. Nothing about this story grabbed my attention enough, even to use it as background noise while I did work. But I think the audio will pair well with the "mysterious dark hot guy and innocent girl" type of readers.
While reading WOCB, I learned something new about my reading preferences: I'm not too fond of Romantic-led Fantasies. Over the last few years of reading epic tales about war, magic, competitions, etc., romance has always been a side quest. I've grown used to the typical tropes of enemies turned lovers or friends becoming something more, but I have yet to deal with interest fresh out of the gate. I had to check the synopsis a few times to ensure I was reading the right story. Yes, everything listed is happening in the book, but it felt like the view was in the backseat while a bird and vampire became instant love interests. I've mentioned in other reviews that romance isn't my cup of tea, and I need to ease into that genre. WOCB had no prior warning until it was too late.
I would have loved to learn about the mythology of a Thai Bird Princess and whatever kind of spin-off the author would've created. I also liked the idea of a secret society hunting down artifacts to protect the world from evil. Everything screams Assassin's Creed, Uncharted, Angels & Demons, etc. But the romance tremendously overshadowed the story, and I couldn't continue.
Overall I have no rating for this book. It was neither here nor there for me. I took a chance, and it led me to a new self-discovery. Off to the next book!
Wings Once Cursed and Bound is available now!