Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros

May 29th, 2023 Kimberly Review 31 Comments

29th May

A fantasy romance, set at a college for dragon riders…. heck yes! Narrated by Rebecca Soler & Teddy Hamilton, Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros is the first novel in the Empyrean series from Red Tower Publishing. This epic tale delivered suspense, danger, and romance that hooked me from the first chapter. I cannot wait for more…

Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros
Fourth Wing
by Rebecca Yarros
Series: The Empyrean #1
Narrator: Rebecca Soler, Teddy Hamilton
Length: 20 hours and 47 minutes
Genres: Fantasy, Romance
Source: Purchase
Purchase*: Amazon | Audible *affiliate
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarOne Star
Heat Level: One FlameOne FlameOne FlameOne Flame
Narration: 4 cups Speed: 1.5x

Enter the brutal and elite world of a war college for dragon riders from USA Today bestselling author Rebecca Yarros

Twenty-year-old Violet Sorrengail was supposed to enter the Scribe Quadrant, living a quiet life among books and history. Now, the commanding general—also known as her tough-as-talons mother—has ordered Violet to join the hundreds of candidates striving to become the elite of Navarre: dragon riders.

But when you’re smaller than everyone else and your body is brittle, death is only a heartbeat away...because dragons don’t bond to “fragile” humans. They incinerate them.

With fewer dragons willing to bond than cadets, most would kill Violet to better their own chances of success. The rest would kill her just for being her mother’s daughter—like Xaden Riorson, the most powerful and ruthless wingleader in the Riders Quadrant.

She’ll need every edge her wits can give her just to see the next sunrise.

Yet, with every day that passes, the war outside grows more deadly, the kingdom's protective wards are failing, and the death toll continues to rise. Even worse, Violet begins to suspect leadership is hiding a terrible secret.

Friends, enemies, lovers. Everyone at Basgiath War College has an agenda—because once you enter, there are only two ways out: graduate or die.

fantasy newadult RomCom SUSPENSE

This story had all the elements I love in fantasy romance. We have dragons, magic, a heroine with a disability and an “enemies to lovers” romance. From the very first chapter, the author hooked me and kept me listening. When I wasn’t listening, I was thinking about it and now that I am done, I am left counting the days until the next release. l love that kind of book high.

Now, before I get into how outstanding this story was, I want to talk about the audiobook itself. Rebecca Soler narrates and does a stellar job of not only voicing the characters but of capturing the emotions and tone of the story. Her voices are such that I immediately recognized characters. Teddy Hamilton narrates near the end of the book, giving us Xaden’s perspective and gave a wonderful performance. However, the Recorded Books finished copy had editing issues. From hard swallows not being edited out to dead space. These infractions pulled me out of the story. It was a tremendous disappointment. I am hoping more care is given with the next audiobook.

The story is told from the perspective of twenty-year-old Violet Sorrengail. She plans to enter Scribe Quadrant and live her life studying history surrounded by books. I adored her from the start. When her mother, the commanding general, ordered her to join the candidates, hoping to become the elite of Navarre: dragon riders, I rooted for her. Given her size and fragile body, no one thinks Violet will survive the training, let alone have a dragon choose her as their rider.

As we learn about the world & its history, we get to know the cadets in Violet’s unit, from her friends to those who poke fun at her. I enjoyed the academy and training, but things got really exciting when the choosing began. I held my breath, shouted and became swept up.

The cadets not only risk not being chosen and having to wait a year but, they can also be found unworthy and incinerated. I kid you not! The competition to become a rider is cutthroat, as there are more riders than dragons. Cadets will try to outmaneuver, remove, or displace other cadets to gain a seat.

The training with the dragons themselves was exhilarating, from staying seated to maneuvers. The training, sparring, and missions all added to the tale, creating suspense as it fleshed out the characters and world.

Violet, aka “Vengeance” is a strong feminine character. She’s smart, kind, and resilient despite her disability. Violet doesn’t expect accommodations, instead she pushes herself to excel. She looks for the good in others and outwits her opponents. The girl is kickass and you’ll want to root for her.

Secondary characters added to the story from girlfriends to those placed around Violet to protect her. I found myself attached to them, and became emotionally invested.

The romance is a forbidden love that will curl your toes. I loved the chemistry between Xaden and Violet. It was all clash and teeth with delicious, consuming heat. He acted annoyed when you could just feel his attraction to her. The relationship between their dragons complicates matters and the fact that he is a child of a previous war.

The dragons were amazing from their abilities to communication. The aerial maneuvers and strategies with their riders on the field were described in vivid 3-D detail. We also see other creatures, but I will leave you to discover that and the magical elements.

The overall story arc for this series has me giddy, and the author did a great job of hooking me with reveals at the end. A brilliant tale from beginning to end. Thank the dragons the next audiobook releases in November 2023.

Amazon | Audible

About Rebecca Yarros

Rebecca Yarros

Rebecca Yarros is a hopeless romantic and coffee addict. She is the New York Times bestselling author of over twenty novels, including Fourth Wing, The Last Letter and The Things We Leave Unfinished. She’s also the recipient of the Colorado Romance Writer’s Award of Excellence for Eyes Turned Skyward. Rebecca loves military heroes and has been blissfully married to hers for over twenty years. A mother of six, she is currently surviving the teenage years with all four of her hockey-playing sons.

About Rebecca Soler

Rebecca Soler

Rebecca Soler is a New York-based actress who voices numerous principal characters for the CW s Saturday morning cartoon lineup, including "Viva Pinata", "Huntik", "The Winx Club", and "Chaotic". Her audiobook credits include "Lock & Key" by Sarah Dessen and "After "by Amy Efaw, for which she was awarded an AudioFile Earphones Award.

About Teddy Hamilton

A soldier, an athlete, a comedian, and a softer kind of soul, Teddy Hamilton is the guy to fill any need. Known best for his work in the Him series by Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy, and the Mister series by JA Huss, Teddy has lent his voice to over eighty titles, some sweet and some salty, always with a lot of passion and heart.

caffeinated coffee cup divider

Stay Caffeinated!

Never miss a post by adding Caffeinated to your Inbox

Photo of kimbacaffeinate
About Kimberly
Kimberly is a coffee loving book addict who reads and listens to fictional stories in all genres. Whovian, Ravenclaw, Howler and proud Nonna. She owns and manages Caffeinated PR. The coffee is always on and she is ready to chat. Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Leave a Reply

(Enter your URL then click here to include a link to one of your blog posts.)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

31 Responses to “Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros”

  1. Yvette

    Is there a version where Rebecca Solar reads the last chapter? No disrespect to Teddy Hamilton. But I can’t seem to finish the book with him reading it and I really love the story. I am bummed and frustrated with the change in narrators.

  2. Arthur

    The narration on this book was hands down the worst I have heard. Infantile, nasally and matter of factly when it needed to have a more serious tone. She sounds like an annoying Karen

    • Kimberly

      She had a cold, but Brilliance Audio listened and redid part and cleaned up the audio. Be sure you have uploaded the newest version.

  3. Maureen @ Maureen's Books

    I just finished reading this book and I absolutely loved it! Why did I wait so long to read it?! I can’t stop thinking about it and already preordered the second book! LOL!
    Great review! I’m so excited you loved it as well!

  4. Vanessa

    Just started reading the book so I did skim the review out of fear of any spoilers lol but I read and listen to the audiobook at the same time and it is a bit difficult to hear the narrators voice when she’s sick. From other reviews it says it gets better by chapter 11 so I’ll just read until then without the audiobook. I am Curious though, around what chapter does Teddy Hamilton start narrating? I’ve heard him in other stuff before and really enjoy his narrations!

    • Kimberly

      He only does the last chapter. While her cold did improve the swallows etc weren’t edited out. I loved it though!

  5. Kim

    I enjoyed your review. This is such a good story. I’m a little obsessed with it. I am definitely looking forward to November and hopefully getting some of my questions answered.

  6. Stormi

    I am curious about this one but it’s so hyped I am afraid to try it as I normally don’t like the book that are hyped. I might break down and try it later on…lol.

    Stormi recently posted: Week in Review #37
    • Kimberly

      Book two will be out soon, and then you can see what others think. I am excited about Red Tower’s line up of releases and cannot wait for the next books etc.

  7. Katherine

    I’m not much of a fantasy reader but this one sounds so amazing! I definitely need to pick up the audio. I love Soler’s narration and this sounds amazing.

  8. Jessica @ a GREAT read

    OOh nice! I have this book in my TBR! I had reads a few good reviews that pretty me much convinced me to pick it up! Now I just need to work it into my queue! Glad to see it’s still winning hearts! Great review!