Saturday, November 14, 2020

ARC Review: The Bright and Breaking Sea by Chloe Neill

The Bright and Breaking Sea

Chloe Neill
Series: A Captain Kit Brightling Novel
Publication: Berkley (November 17, 2020)

Description: Chloe Neill brings her trademark wit and wild sense of adventure to a stunning seafaring fantasy starring a dauntless heroine in a world of magic and treachery.

Kit Brightling, rescued as a foundling and raised in a home for talented girls, has worked hard to rise through the ranks of the Isles’ Crown Command and become one of the few female captains in Queen Charlotte's fleet. Her ship is small, but she's fast—in part because of Kit’s magical affinity to the sea. But the waters become perilous when the queen sends Kit on a special mission with a partner she never asked for.

Rian Grant, Viscount Queenscliffe, may be a veteran of the Continental war, but Kit doesn’t know him or his motives—and she’s dealt with one too many members of the Beau Monde. But Kit has her orders, and the queen has commanded they journey to a dangerous pirate quay and rescue a spy who's been gathering intelligence on the exiled emperor of Gallia.

Kit can lead her ship and clever crew on her own, but with the fate of queen and country at stake, Kit and Rian must learn to trust each other, or else the Isles will fall....

My Thoughts: Neill's new fantasy was an entertaining adventure. Kit Brightling was a foundling raised by an independent woman who had high expectations for her adopted daughters. Kit has become a Captain in the Queen's Own ostensibly working as a courier but actually as an agent of the Queen. 

The Queen calls her in to rescue a captured spy from an impregnable prison. The only problem is that the Queen wants her to work with a member of the Beau Monde, a Viscount named Rian Grant. They do not immediately hit it off. 

Grant feels that he has done his service to the Queen in the battles on the Continent. Now he wants to spend time on his estate since it was run down during the war and needs his attention to get it out of debt. But rescuing the spy only begins the adventure because he gives them information leading to a traitor within the government of the Queen.

This story takes place in 1815 or so in a world similar to that of the Napoleonic era except that in this world there is magic. Kit is aligned to the sea which is an advantage for a sea captain. However, the former emperor Gerard has been exiled to an isolated island but his supporters have plans to free him which involves lots of magic.

I liked the relationship that grew between Kit and Grant and that it wasn't an "instant love" sort of relationship. I liked Kit's relationship with her crew. The whole setting was excellently done. I loved the details about sailing ships. I also loved that in this world there seemed to be a lot of equality between the sexes and a multi-ethnic society. Of course, there were also the old fuddy-duddies of the Beau Monde who didn't want women in positions of power and certainly not foundlings. There was also a prejudice among the Beau Monde regarding magic and its use. 

I can't wait for more of Kit Brightling's adventures.

Favorite Quote:
Thornberry and Smith walked away. Preston stayed where he was, and looked down his titled, narrow nose at Kit.

"Impudence is unbecoming in a young officer. Particularly a female."

"Arrogance is unbecoming in an old officer, regardless of gender. So I suppose we both have things to complain about."

With that, she walked away, and left him staring after her.

I received this one in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.


  1. I love examining relationships and identity in books. This is my first time visiting your blog and it looks great!


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