Check out my full review of Fourth Wing below to see if this is a romance book worth reading and if it deserves a spot on my list of Top 10 Romantasy Books!
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Category: Fantasy Romance, Young Adult Romance
Tags: Fantasy, Enemies to Lovers, Dragons, Strong Heroines, Wounded Hero, Scars
Published May 2023
Series: Fourth Wing Series (The Empyrean)
Amazon | Goodreads
Fourth Wing Summary:
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, the end of your life 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 take out Violet to better their own chances of success.
The rest would end 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 battle outside grows more dangerous, the kingdom’s protective wards are failing, and the ledger of those lost continues to rise.
Even worse, Violet begins to suspect leadership is hiding a terrible secret.
Fourth Wing: My Review
Fourth Wing has everything I love about fantasy romance – great writing, amazing characters, intriguing world-building, and tension-filled chemistry that has all the spice! I cannot recommend this book enough. 😊
Coming in at a whopping 600+ pages, this book will be one of the best fantasy romance books you won’t be able to put down, and then you’ll be counting down the days until the next book, Iron Flame, releases.
It’s rightly one of the best romance novels of 2023!
We first meet Violet Sorrengail on the day she’s to enter the Riders Quadrant. It could also be her last because NO ONE expects her to last past the first challenge – crossing the parapet – let alone last past any challenges faced by first years.
See Violet was like her father, a lover of books and history, who believed she would train to be a Scribe but her mother, general Sorrengail, pushed her to be a rider because that’s what Sorrengails should be.
But Violet has several things stacked against her entering the rider quadrant – her last name, her lack of training, her size and frail body, and the many trainees ready to take her last breath the first chance they get.
Despite these odds, we witness Violet enter the rider quadrant and become a part of the Fourth Wing with the sole goal to make it to Threshing and hope that a dragon picks her as its bonded human.
This is my first book by Rebecca Yarros but she’s been on my radar for a while. Now I’m kicking myself for waiting for so long.
Fourth Wing is her first fantasy romance book and I only hope she continues writing in this genre long after the next book in the Fourth Wing series because she’s shown that she has what it takes to write an epic fantasy.
A lot of fantasy romance books, especially young adult fantasy romance books, have similar characteristics but I think that’s what we like about them. And Fourth Wing gives us many of these similar elements:
- A strong heroine who’s initially seen as weak compared to those around her but who really is a diamond in the rough with a quality and power all her own.
- A wounded hero who has the weight of the world on his shoulders who’s standoffish, even cruel, but who completely falls for the girl
- A fantasy world filled with power struggles, hidden mysteries and secrets that could change everything one once knew before.
But even though this book weaves in so many similar characteristics of other young adult fantasy books, it stands completely on its own.
Yarros’ writing is also top-notch to the point that it seems effortless for her to draw you in, fall in love with the characters and carry you along a really compelling story and slow burn romance.
Comparisons With Fourth Wing
It’s hard not to draw specific comparisons with other fantasy books I adore to Fourth Wing.
The From Blood and Ash series by Jennifer L. Armentrout is one of my favorite fantasy romance book series because I absolutely adore Poppy and Casteel.
If you too loved From Blood and Ash and these characters then you’ll love the push and pull between Violet and Xaden.
From their very first meeting, Violet knew that Xaden, a third-year rider, would end her the first chance he got given their connected past just as Casteel was ready to use Poppy for his own purposes.
It was the perfect enemies to lovers setup that oozed the perfect chemistry between these two.
At one point midway through the book, Violet realizes that she really doesn’t know a lot about Xaden and I realized the same.
I only hope we learn more about his past and get more of his point of view in Iron Flame!
Plus, while reading Fourth Wing you knew that there was definitely more going on behind the scenes than you were told and maybe what you’re being told isn’t the truth – gah!
I can also see the comparison of Fourth Wing with The Hunger Games as the rider quadrant is a dog-eat-dog kind of world where it’s everyone out for themselves.
Violet has a connective tissue disorder (just like Rebecca Yarros!) that really puts her at risk in the challenges and everyone is out to get rid of the weakest link.
With danger facing Violet every day, you were really on the edge of your seat to see how she would survive.
I could also draw comparisons to the A Court of Thorns and Roses series, and especially A Court of Mist and Fury though I have to say I liked this book better.
I adored Rhys in A Court of Mist and Fury and how he really saw Feyre for who she was. Xaden was the same way with Violet – not coddling her like her best friend, but helping her the best way he could.
Plus, there is so much more to Xaden as you found out with Rhys and I loved him!
Whether Tiktok and Booktok makes you pick up Fourth Wing or this review, I know you won’t be disappointed.
Now give me Iron Flame!!
Book Lists With Fourth Wing:
- Best Romance Novels of 2023
- 2023 Goodreads Choice Awards for Best Romantasy
- Best Book Boyfriends of 2023
- Best Young Adult Fantasy Romance Books
- Top 10 Romantasy Books of All Time
- Best Enemies to Lovers Books
- Romance Books Featuring Characters With Scars
- 30 Most Anticipated New Romance Books of 2023
- Most Anticipated Romance Books of May 2023
- Fourth Wing Series: The Complete Guide
- Fourth Wing TV Series: What We Know Now
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More Yarros Books:
- Iron Flame by Rebecca Yarros
- In the Likely Event by Rebecca Yarros
- Rebecca Yarros Books: The Complete List