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5+ stars for Anaya Awakens (Fragments of the Gods, Book One) by JCR Paulino #highfantasy #fantasy #bookreview #ku #bookrec

Title: Anaya Awakens (Fragments of the Gods, Book One)

Author: JCR Paulino

Genre: High fantasy, Fantasy


Book Blurb:


“In the clarity of their delusion, they become a tiny piece of their god.”—The Sebesian Prophet.


Six-year-old Anaya lives with her family in a remote community in the mountains. A mysterious illness sweeps through the village, killing all the children under the age of seven except for Anaya. Following her recovery, Anaya develops supernatural powers, setting in motion the destinies of four people across two continents. 


Angry villagers accuse Anaya’s mother of practicing witchcraft and blame her for the death of their children. They attack Anaya’s home, leaving the little girl orphaned. Anaya flees into the forest, fending for herself and developing her supernatural abilities.


Rayla is a high-ranking officer in the kingdom of Kasmana. She must stop a military coup while thwarting her enemies’ efforts to use Anaya’s powers for their nefarious goals.


Kendar hails from the Highlands. He has been hiding the powers he acquired twelve years earlier after surviving the same disease as Anaya. Knowing the depth of her potential, Kendar travels to Kasmana to snatch the little girl’s powers for himself.


Danny is a rookie ranger from the kingdom of Newisbel, a nation boasting incredibly advanced technology. No other country knows of Newisbel’s existence, and the hidden kingdom’s ruler, the Invoker, understands exactly what’s happening with Anaya. Can Danny retrieve the six-year-old before her growing powers endanger the world?


 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ “An enthralling blend of high fantasy and science fiction.” —Readers’ Favorite.


My Review:


Anaya survives a deadly illness, only to become a dangerous supernatural being many fear and some want to use for evil purposes. Can Anaya use her powers for good or will she need to be killed before she goes rogue? Anaya Awakens is a feast for fantasy readers. Incorporating intricate world-building, descriptive narration, a large cast of characters, and high stakes, JCR Paulino writes an unputdownable read.


Let’s start with the world-building. JCR Paulino writes a world that is both familiar and yet original. The layers of detail are built upon each other to create an immersive reading experience. Each kingdom/village has its own identity and view on life. The more I read, the more invested I became. I honestly didn’t want to stop reading.


The characters are well written and enrich the story on so many levels. The main characters, especially Anaya, are colorful, original, and filled with emotion. Their beliefs, actions, and emotions influence how they react to extraordinary circumstances. The cast of characters is very large but not overwhelming.


The writing is brilliant, especially for the first book in a brand-new series. Each scene is well detailed with dialogue, action, and more. JCR Paulino is quickly becoming one of my favorite fantasy authors. I can’t wait to read what happens next.


My Rating: 5+ stars


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Author Biography:


JCR Paulino is an emerging author in the fantasy and science fiction genres best known for his debut novel, The Swords of Blood and Gold. This book has garnered several accolades, including:


·   The Literary Titan Golden Book Award.

·   The Artisan Book Review Book Excellence Award (in Mystery, Thriller, Urban Fantasy).

·   The 2022 Readers’ Favorite International Book Award Silver Medal in Fiction – New Adult.

·   A B.R.A.G. Medallion listing from indieBRAG, LLC.


In January 2023, Paulino introduced readers to The Crystal Canvas. His high-fantasy series, Fragments of the Gods, was released in January 2024.


Balancing a full-time career as a Human Resources executive with his passion for writing, JCR resides in Southern California. He enjoys life’s adventures with his wife and two children.


Social Media Links:






Reviewed by: Nancy


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