Review: Power Unbound by Nicole Murphy
Reviewed by Liz Grzyb
Paranormal romance/urban fantasy fans will be pleased to see that Nicole Murphy’s Dream of Asarlai trilogy continues with Power Unbound. The story continues on from where we left it at the end of Secret Ones, but we have a new protagonist, Maggie’s friend Ione, and we follow her budding relationship with Stephen as the story arc about Asarlai, a renegade Gadda, and her entanglement with the Forbidden Texts continues.
Murphy’s protagonists are always engaging and likeable, and Ione is no exception. A single mother, Ione is a Gadda (magic-wielder) who is unable to access her powers, but a wizard with computers. Stephen is at the other end of the spectrum: one of the youngest Gadda ever to go through the trial for Sixth Order. When the two meet, sparks fly!
Unlike Secret Ones, Power Unbound is set almost entirely in the Gadda town Sclossin. While the place is not off-limits to humans, they pass through without realising what is different about the town.
While the novel is primarily based around Ione and Stephen’s relationship, tension is mounting with the concurrent storyline of Asarlai and the Forbidden Texts. Things get more and more dramatic as the ruling council only seem to find those associated with Asarlai when they turn up dead and the question is raised: will they stop her before she does something to endanger all of the Gadda?
While the novel is a continuation from the first installation of Dream of Asarlai, readers will find it easy to start with this one. There is enough backstory told at the beginning to familiarise new readers to the world. The series will appeal to romance and fantasy readers alike.