Adeluna is a soldier. Five years ago, she helped the magic-rich island of Grace Loray overthrow its oppressor, Agrid, a country ruled by religion.
But adjusting to postwar life has not been easy. When an Argridian delegate vanishes during peace talks with Grace Loray’s new Council, Argrid demands brutal justice—but Lu suspects something dangerous is at work.
Devereux is a pirate. As one of the stream raiders who run rampant on Grace Loray, he scavenges the island’s magic plants and sells them on the black market. But after Argrid accuses raiders of the diplomat’s abduction, Vex becomes a target. An expert navigator, he agrees to help Lu find the Argridian—but the truth they uncover could be deadlier than any war.
Benat is a heretic. The crown prince of Argrid, he harbors a secret obsession with Grace Loray’s forbidden magic. When Ben’s father, the king, gives him the shocking task of reversing Argrid’s fear of magic, Ben has to decide if one prince can change a devout country—or if he’s building his own pyre.
As conspiracies arise, Lu, Vex, and Ben will have to decide who they really are . . . and what they are willing to become for peace.
This is a book that has parallel stories running through it: the story of Lu and the story of Ben. When this happens, you know as a reader that somehow these seemingly separate stories must be related but often you aren’t sure how. Sometimes an author does a good job of bringing the stories together and other times they are not so successful. But this is one of those success stories; Sara Raasch does a brilliant job of weaving the story lines into one.
For me the strongest part of These Rebel Waves were the characters. I am a huge fan of strong character development and Raasch’s characters are believable and likeable. Lu is a strong female protagonist. As a girl, her father and mother were rebels fighting for a free world. During the rebellion, despite her young age, Lu was a soldier battling for a worthy cause. Now the rebellion is over, she is a young lady but she hasn’t forgotten her training, nor has she been able to get over her guilt for all the killing she did early in her life.
Devereux is the perfect foil to Lu. Lighthearted and rebellious, when they are thrown together the reader can’t help following their sparring matches with delight.
Over in Agrid, Ben is a different character altogether. In love with the captain of his guard, he will one day rule but is continually hiding his true self from his father. He hides his love affair (not because his lover is a man but because he is lower class), his affinity for magic, and his true beliefs. When Ben’s father asks him to start using magic in an effort to cure all disease, Ben is faced with the dilemma of choosing between being labelled a heretic and pleasing his father.
Both storylines have lots of action and adventure combined with mysteries that are unwoven as the story evolves. The climax of the story is fast paced and satisfying. I finished the book wishing there was more to come (which is always the sign of an excellent read). Highly recommend!