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Descendants #1

Bound by Prophecy

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Twenty-two-year-old Aern is done watching his brother destroy the only thing that matters. He never wanted to take Morgan’s place among council, never wanted to rule their hidden world. But when the key to the prophecy is found, a young girl named Brianna whom Morgan will destroy, Aern knows he has to take action.
What he really wants, is for things to go back to normal. But now he’s kidnapped a girl, and his brother’s men are after him. His only hope is to join with the Division, but they have plans of their own, and it’s the last thing Aern is willing to do.
Emily just wants her sister back. She doesn't care about the prophecy, or realize what’s at stake. But when she goes after Aern, the truth of the matter uncoils, and Brianna isn't the only one who’s in danger.
Suddenly, they’re at the center of a secret war, and unless they can work together, they’ll both have a sacrifice too big to make.

260 pages, Paperback

First published April 1, 2013

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About the author

Melissa Wright

68 books1,360 followers
Melissa is the author of more than a dozen YA and fantasy novels including The Frey Saga and Between Ink and Shadows. When not writing she can generally be found talking with an author friend about a book, painting something from a book, or tucked between headphones listening to a book. It’s kind of a theme. She loves reasonable heroines in unreasonable situations, noble--if brooding--heroes, slow burn and sweet kisses, a lot of havoc, and a little magic. Stay updated on works in progress at Instagram. Contact her through the web at www.melissa-wright.com

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5 stars
419 (24%)
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522 (31%)
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488 (29%)
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81 (4%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 207 reviews
Profile Image for Amanda.
360 reviews
January 2, 2014
I have questions. So, so many questions.

1.) What are they?
2.) What is the history of their race (since they are not humans, but are more like humans because their powers have become dormant)?
3.) What is the prophecy and why are their so many different versions?
4.) What the hell happened?

Ok, so you can probably tell from those questions, that there is a lot of stuff in this book that isn't explained. I have no idea what the background is behind whatever these people are. Nothing. You know there is a prophecy, the players in the present, a council, and a renegade group called 'The Division'. THAT IS ALL YOU GET PEOPLE.

How am I, as a reader, supposed to understand what the heck I'm reading about if the author doesn't provide basic history of the species (are these people God's or some aliens that landed on earth) and where you are dropped into the story. You get NOTHING other than what is going on right now in the present and a bit of the twins mother's history.

That said, this is a good story. It could have been a great story had I been given some context, but the plot here is good. I felt the ending was rushed in a way that I got super confused on what actually happened at the pivotal moment in the book. I also felt like part of this story was very predictable. I called most of the turns before they happened (some even in the beginning of the book).

I would recommend this, but I think a bit of history needs to be given in the next book.
Profile Image for Shannon (Twilight Sleep).
329 reviews47 followers
June 7, 2013
This review was originally posted at Twilight Sleep - a young adult book blog that features reviews, giveaways, and more!


I don't even know how to write this review. Bound by Prophecy is one of those books that's just so damn good you can't even talk about it. It's so damn good, you don't even know why.

From the moment I picked up this book, it was an instant love affair. I'll be honest - I didn't even know who Melissa Wright was before I signed up for this tour. I just read the book blurb and thought it'd be interesting, so I went for it. BOY AM I GLAD I DID. This book has topped ALL of the books I've read so far this year. Except for Unravel Me. And Scarlet. But what I'm trying to say is: THIS BOOK IS AMAZING. So go read it. There, review done. I can haz book 2 nao?

Ok ok, damn. I'll try harder. So, I'm in love with the fact that Wright managed to write (haha, see what I did there?) this book from a male POV without sounding forced, stupid, or otherwise unconvincing. Aern is refreshing, sexy, and totally believeable - and I'm very happily married, but I can't lie and say I wasn't falling for him from the start. Like, if he was real my husband might need to be worried. But I digress (again).

Aern and his brother Morgan are blood descendants of a long line of powerful beings with special abilities. Their particular flavor of Kool-Aid is what's known as "sway" - meaning they can sway, or compel, humans to do their bidding. Of course, Morgan has to be the ass of the story who's let his power go to his head and is basically hell-bent on conquering/destroying the world with it. So of course Aern is bound and determined to stop him, thus saving us all. I sound snarky but that's totally not snark. It's the dang truth. You see, there's this prophecy that's all up in the mix making people crazy and stuff. When we meet Aern, he's in the middle of meeting Emily, whose sister (Brianna) he has kidnapped. Emily hates him at first for obvious reasons, but eventually it becomes clear to her that Aern has hidden Brianna away to keep her safe from Morgan - Morgan, who wants her to fulfill the prophecy that will make me him ruler of the universe world something. What Morgan doesn't know - what NOBODY knows, is that a big ol' monkey wrench is about to be thrown in his plans by Aern and Emily, the unlikely duo.

If ever there was a swoon-worthy couple, it's these two. I fell in love with them both - Aern for his wholesomeness, compassion, loyalty, and sexy-smexy. Emily for her grit, honesty, and ability to be vulnerable without seeming weak. Wright has done some of the best character and world building I've ever read - no one felt lacking and there wasn't a single moment that I couldn't feel myself inside this book. And between the bloodshed, the lives lost, the battle for power, and the search for self, there's a glowing spark of real, true, amazing love.

A gripping read from start to finish, Bound by Prophecy is guaranteed to leave you wanting much, much more.

Melissa, y u no on Twitter? Y u no let me stalk you and fangirl about how much I love Aern and Emily? I think you should do something about that.
Profile Image for Abooktopia.
56 reviews46 followers
October 23, 2016


Aern and his brother Morgan are descendants of a long and powerful line that have special abilities. With Morgan destined to rule and wreak havoc, Aern must stop his brother from fulfilling the prophecy. The only way to disrupt the prophecy is to stop Morgan from getting his hands on the prophecy girl, Brianna. What they don’t know is that she has a sister… A twin. And Emily will stop at nothing to find her sister.

When Emily rescues Aern from Morgan, she demands to know where her sister is. Reluctantly, together they travel as they escape from Morgan’s men, to the location where Brianna is held, the Division. With Emily now in the picture, Aern must now also protect her to prevent Morgan from using Emily as leverage to get to Brianna. But when Emily, and Aern discover a hidden truth, their plans soon change.

I didn’t know what to expect of Emily at first, but as I continued to read and observe her character, I fell in love with her tough personality and determination. Emily was not only resourceful, but also brave. Aern was charming and protective with a loveable personality. He’s a Descendant that is part of a race with the abilities to ‘sway’ humans to their will. The problem is, Morgan not only can bend the will of humans, but the will his fellow Descendants. That is a dangerous power alone.

Bound By Prophecy was a fantastic and suspenseful read that captured me right from the start. I loved the romance, as it was slow and realistic, and only served as a backdrop without overtaking the entire plot. I cannot wait to get my hand on the second novel Shifting Fate in the Descendants series.

***I received a signed copy of this book in return for an honest and unbiased review***
Profile Image for Sarah Wilson.
295 reviews7 followers
July 7, 2015
I decided to pick this book up after Ben (From BenjaminofTomes) made it his bookclub book of the month. The plot definitely intrigued me as, although prophecies are often a bit overdone in books, this one sounded different to others and I thought it had a lot of potential.

Unfortunately, I do feel like this potential was somewhat wasted. This was the most vague book I think I have ever read. I was just left with a ridiculous amount of questions. I couldn't tell you where the book was set, what the world is like, why things are happening, or even what the main character's motives were and it's in a first person narrative. I understand when a book likes to slowly build up the world around it, but in this there was no world building, just a plot which lacked a lot of sense because of it. It also stopped me from connecting to the characters because I didn't understand them or why they were doing things.

We only get to hear vague things about the prophecy and an ancient language, as well as two groups called Council and The Division, but they seemed to blend at some point, which left me confused. I don't understand if this is set in the future, who this race of people are (if they are a different race?), what their powers are or why? Why? Why is anything happening??

One thing that did really bother me more than this though was the fact that even in a first person perspective where the main character knows a lot, they didn't let the reader know anything. Sometimes two characters would have a mental conversation. For example 'I willed her to understand what I meant, and she did', whilst the reader was left saying 'WHAT? What did she understand from that look??'

Despite all of this I do see that there is a good story hidden amongst the questions, it could have even been great with some more context and background thrown in. I did just get left feeling confused an awful lot and the ending felt quite rushed. The main plus I have of this book was that it was a quick read, but I would've preferred a longer read with some more background to it! I am going to continue the series (mostly because I bought the trilogy on kobo for £2.50) but also because I'm hoping the second and third books will explain more. I just hope that this book wasn't left deliberately vague to intrigue people into buying the sequels, because books written well and in detail can lure readers back much better than a vague one!
Profile Image for Autumn.
969 reviews48 followers
June 7, 2013
First off Holy smokes! Talk about captivating! This was my first Melissa Wright book and now I feel the urge to snatch up everything shes ever written!

Aern is caught up in the drama his older power hungry brother Morgan has created.. Well I guess he didn’t create it as it was prophesied Morgan is destined to be a bad ass and the only way to stop him is to disrupt the prophecy. And Aern does that by taking Brianna (willingly) to a safe location where he believes she would be safe.. Well her sister, Emily isn’t to fond of that and she wants her sister back she knows of the prophecy and her roll is to protect her sister. Well she cant very well do that while Aern has her hidden.

Reluctantly Aern agrees to take Emily to Brianna. And that’s where the awesome amazingness begins! Bound by Prophecy is action packed! Seriously every time things start to be cool and calm for our hero and heroine shit hits the fan! My poor nails have been bitten down to slivers its rather unattractive. Good thing I have no one to impress. And about them Aern and Emily I loved them both. Aern hes really close to hitting the book boyfriend list. Next book perhaps. Emily was strong, solid character who didn’t get on my nerves once! In all honesty I was slightly indifferent to Brianna. Morgan I loved his bad ass. Yes I know hes the villain but he was a magnificent villain.

I highly recommend this read. Wright’s writing is wondrous and highly entertaining! Im holding my breath for the next novel in the series!!!!!
Profile Image for Danielle Smiley.
290 reviews12 followers
May 24, 2013
Melissa Wright just gets better and better!!! This is everything an urban fantasy should be:
full of action, great plot twists, lots of not knowing who to trust and sizzling chemistry. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this book!!!

Amazing creativity went into the writing of Bound by Prophecy. I love how little by little the mystery of this world is revealed to us. So many players, all with their own agendas! Then there's Emily and Aern ... happy sigh! It's not often that our main characters are so well matched as they are in Bound by Prophecy; two tough, bad a$$ characters that aren't so sure they like each other or are even on the same side. You have Aern --a descendant, so he's got some mad supernatural skills-- who must battle his bat-crap crazy (and crazy powerful) brother. And then he meets Emily who's tenacious and unyeilding and wants to beat Aern senseless since he kidnapped her sister. Amidst all their conflict, a perfectly-paced (no insta-love here), gorgeously written romance blooms between the two. There's so much going on within Bound by Prophecy that I found myself reading into the wee hours of the morning. All the action, intrigue and romance culminates to an incredible conclusion. Those last chapters are a crazy intense! Great Ending!!!

This is a book you do NOT want to miss! And, if you haven't read her other works, the Frey Saga is an equally amazing fantasy.
Profile Image for Chelle.
143 reviews8 followers
June 4, 2013
So I knew going into this that it’s a YA romance so I wasn’t expecting something really deep and philosophical. A girl likes her guilty-pleasure reads every now and again, this wedding planning lady especially. I was kind of hoping for a plot that would catch my attention and something to tug a lil at the ol’heartstrings.

Nope! It wasn’t even a good no-brainer book. I felt like without the synopsis I wouldn’t have understood things at all. In truth there was a kind of sub-par fanfic feel about the whole thing. Like the author assumes you have a lot more knowledge about the world and the events than we actually do. Fanfic, or maybe an excerpt from a larger piece of work. One with some back story.
Coming in at only 163 pages it is definitely short, even for YA which honestly tends to get a bit long at times. And short isn’t necessarily bad. I adore Wrinkle in Time and it’s pretty short, although even that book is about 40 pages more than this one. Wright could have done a lot with those additional pages, and she probably should have.

Instead of experiencing any emotional investment, or even shock/horror at some of the events of The Big Climax I just kind of passively went through it. Perhaps it’s pacing, the beginning really dragged for me, probably because I had no clue wtf even happened. True story, I thought Aern was a chick for the first.. I dunno 40 pages or so? (Yes I know the cover is a girl and boy but anyway). That kind of sums up the whole book actually. You’re not ever given enough information to really truly know what’s going on.

The entire book they talk about Commonbloods, which is fairly easy to figure out are plain old Muggles. But then there’s this other group. Except, what are they? Not vampires far as I can tell… although there’s a lot of similarities. There’s some kind of inconsistent rules about how they can heal, and this thing about a prophet and a Council. But honestly… I don’t know. And then there’s this whole thing about Others I think, which are some kind of Elder/Ancients type deal who we can manage to backhandedly figure out were a whole lot more powerful than the ones we currently have, whatever they are.

Overall I think it lacks the polish that a finished book should have. It’s like an early draft where the author was just trying to get it all written down before she forget and meant to go add in details later, and then just decided to publish it as-is. On a hunch I went and confirmed the publisher, Createspace. Sadly this book is every stereotypical bad thing that readers and authors have to say about self publishing, bad grammar and spelling mistakes included.

The verdict? While it’s not offensive in any way (which is an accomplishment for YA fic let me tell you!), and thus not deserving of the 1-star hate-rate… it’s honestly only about a 1.5.

Give it a pass.
Profile Image for Saruuh Kelsey.
Author 23 books83 followers
February 20, 2015
WOW. So I am seriously kicking myself for this whole avoiding NA because I think they're all crappy written erotic romance thing. This book, THIS BOOK, is insane. It is so good. Bound by Prophecy is the realisation of every promise New Adult made it the beginning: it's the same as any YA or Adult book, just in a different age bracket. It's not loaded with sex, problematic relationships, flimsy ladies and macho men. It's perf. Let me tell you why.

The fantasy! It's not entirely unique but what Melissa does with it is. The paranormals in this series have the power of sway. Compulsion, control, whatever you wanna control it - they can touch someone and control them. And what does the main villain do with that power? Well he wants to control the whole human race with it. Obviously. It's the MCs job to stop this guy - his brother - before a pretty terrible prophecy comes to pass and the villain causes the enslavement of one species and the end of another.

The characters! Aern, the MC, is a guy. I dig male POVs for some reason. But Aern is the polar opposite of what I expected from NA. I thought he'd be the Extreme Alpha Male, or the Hot Badass, maybe the Tortured Asshole. He's none of these types, none of the bad boy tropes. He's honest and driven and good. He's a genuine good boy, not a bad boy. (and maybe he's pretty badass and super hot but he's not That Guy.) Holy hell I love him. His protective (over-protective?) streak was something I could quickly identify with. I fell hard.

And Emily, the love interest, turned out to be more than just a love interest! It's a New Adult miracle!! She was integral to the plot, a hella strong character, and I thought her distrust of Aern was pretty realistic in the beginning. Even when she began warming to him, it felt natural.

Here's one of my favourite things about Bound by Prophecy: it doesn't force the romance. There isn't a single kiss until the end of the book. Aern and Emily have chemistry, a connection, but there are more important things going on and they know it. I expected at least one obligatory sex scene but when it didn't come I was pretty shocked - NA without sex? Astounding. Who would have thought a NA book could be anything but erotic? (Literally everyone who got excited for the NA age bracket before it blew up with romance.)

My one gripe? The next book is from a different POV and I need MORE of these babies. Hopefully it won't hinder my Absolute Adoration of this series any, since I'm already fair fond of the next MC (and hoping the love interest is Logan, the only guy in this, aside from Aern, I actually trusted.)

I read this in one sitting, in four hours, and I loved it so much I had to get the second book right away. Bound by Prophecy is an instant favourite. BRB getting all Melissa Wright's other books.
Profile Image for Julie Daniels.
177 reviews29 followers
February 26, 2017
An amazing start to a series! Very original. I must say I love that this book was from the guy's POV. I wasn't sure about that at first but it was great! It made me fall in love with Aern even more! Lots of action and it's very well choreographed. The characters are deep and believable. I love Emily. She's such a spit-fire! She's three-dimensional though. Some lead females are just portrayed as all badass and no emotion. No realness, if you will. But Emily has it all. She shows it all. It was easy for me to envision these characters in a real world setting. One of the things I loved most about Aern Archer was his sense of humor. Even in the most dire of situations he could make me laugh! "If there was anything my father had taught me, it was to be calm in the face of disaster." -Aern Archer
I love that there was a love story but that it didn't take over the plot or the entire book. This is a book for all ages. I must say Melissa Wright wins the award for "Best Going into Battle Kiss" Ever! The. Best!
The world-building was great as well. I'm hoping to learn more about the ins and outs about this "world" in the next books. The twists and turns in the plot kept me on the edge of my seat and turning pages like a mad woman! This book has All. The. Feels. It made me laugh "If I had been a psychopathic killer, her mood would have taken the fun right out of it." -Aern It made me so angry I could scream- one word(or name)- Morgan(one of my new favorite villains) It scared me at times and made me cheer for every little victory the good guys made. It also made me cry. I fell in love with these characters so much that I keenly felt their sorrows as well as their victories. I'm going back into this world now with the next book, eager for more!
February 13, 2015
First of all i just wanted to say that i loved the concept of this story. However, as soon as i started reading it i was confused. Why was he hanging upside down in jail? Why was Emily chasing him? Also there was no world building. I didn't know where they were i didn't know why his brother hated him or why aern kidnaped breanna or when or how or anything. And why were aern and emily laying together everyday for no reason? I have no interest in reading any other books in this series. There were so many things unexplained that i am confused about
Profile Image for Mischa.
912 reviews
December 20, 2019
I didn't dislike the book, but the writing was seriously all over the place at times, which made me do a double take a lot, so it wasn't as enjoyable as it could've been. Also, some of the explanations about what is what were missing, as the author jumped into the story really quickly, so it was hard for me to find my footing at first.
Profile Image for Irma *Irma The Book Whisperer*.
1,475 reviews117 followers
May 7, 2019
They called it a thinning of the blood. Though most of our ancestors' magic had slowly weakened, it still left us the ability to hold sway over humans.

My first book by Melissa and I already want more. Amazing setting, wonderful characters and addictive storyline! Loved it.
Profile Image for Tiffany.
272 reviews53 followers
June 7, 2013
Full Blog Post @Book-Marks the Spot

Aern will do anything to stop his brother from fulfilling the prophecy, even kidnap a girl. She is not just any girl, though. She is the chosen one and Morgan will stop at nothing to get her. So Aern does the only thing he can do and he hides her, not knowing that she has a twin sister. Now he has to protect Emily and her sister from his psycho brother. And what he finds out while he is with Emily changes the whole game between him and his brother, prompting him to make the first move.

Emily just wants her sister back, doesn’t realize the danger she puts herself in trying to find her. She just knows that Brianna would not just leave her without telling her. When she finds out things she thought were fairy tales are true, she finally begins to realize the danger. The prophecy she has know her whole life suddenly begins to make sense and she has to deal with the aftermath.

Who can you trust when both sides have their own secret agendas? No one is safe once the truth comes out.

I was a little hesitant to read this book because the MC is a guy, but the book sounded too interesting to pass up. I’m glad I went with it, because I really enjoyed this book. The only reason I’m giving it a 4 is that, it never describes what Aern looks like. If it does I don’t know how I missed it because I was waiting for it. So I just went with the guy on the cover and that’s what he looked like. :D The story itself was fast paced and could change at a moments notice. You think they’re safe and then BOOM knives are being thrown and blood is being shed. It was awesome and Emily is no little fruit cake. She can hold her own and doesn’t need a man to help her, which she demonstrates on occasion. I was wondering about the prophecy the whole time and what it actually says and we don’t really learn about it till the end. Well played Miss Wright, well played. LOL. It was KILLING me. I had my ideas, but I told myself to shut up. O.o With everything that happened in this one I don’t know where Miss Wright is going to take it with the sequel, but I can’t wait. I know it will be just as spectacular as this one.

Overall: This book is full of mind control, knife throwing and a prophecy that will keep you guessing even after the book ends.

Emily: She is one determined chick and will stop at nothing to get what she wants and she wants her sister back. And she will drop you on your head if you are not careful. :D She makes it no secret that she trusts no one and she just wants her sister safe. She also is not one to hold her tongue; she’ll just spit out whatever comes to her mind. You don’t want to mess with this chick. I have a feeling in the next one we will be seeing more of her awesomeness.

Brianna- She is the complete opposite of her twin Emily. Brianna is more soft spoken and kind hearted. She is the sweetest thing and knows how to use it to her advantage. She is just as strong as her sister; she just doesn’t show it in the book. Her talents lie elsewhere.

Aern- He is no stranger to pain, but he can not bear to see Emily or Brianna hurt. That is why he must do everything in his power to make sure they are safe. He just didn’t expect how hard it would be. He follows no ones command and everyone knows it. He is a powerful man and a lot of people are counting on him.

4 stars
Profile Image for Kassandra.
152 reviews148 followers
May 30, 2013
They called it a thinning of the blood. Though most of our ancestors' magic had slowly weakened, it still left us the ability to hold sway over humans.

Bound By Prophecy caught my interest from the first few pages I read. From the very beginning there is mystery and action. The story is told from Aern's POV and he and his brother, Morgan, have the ability to "sway" humans. This sort of reminded me of the movie PUSH, because they can sway people to do anything they want just by touching them. I loved reading from Aern's POV and I loved Aern :D! Aern is charming, protective, witty, and a fighter.

For one brief instant, I considered leaving her. Touching her face, dropping her into a coma, and walking away.

When he meets Emily, Brianna's sister, he does not know what to expect from her. Emily hates Aern for kidnapping her sister, and she does not like what he is and what he can do. I loved Emily's character because this girl does not need a boy to fight her battles or defend her from the bad guys.

"Tell them anyone who touches her dies."

Emily and Aern stay together, because they both need each other. Emily needs Aern to find her sister, and Aern needs to protect Emily so Morgan won't use her as leverage to get to Brianna. Throughout the book they start getting closer to each other. Aern starts feeling a pull towards Emily, but he knows that nothing can happen between them. This does not stop his jealous outburst towards other man.

Knowing we had gotten lucky before. It wouldn't happen again. This time, people would die.

There is a battle going on and off throughout the book. The battle and romance are centered on the prophecy that has been passed down to Aern, Morgan, Emily, and Brianna. All four of them have a part to play in the prophecy. All the lives lost, the blood shed, and betrayal are unstoppable and can only be stopped by these four characters.

Bound By Prophecy was a page turner, I could not put this book down once I started it. I will definitely be reading the second book in the series. The only reason I did not give this book a five star review was because the pace slowed down a little, but after those brief pages it picked up again.

Bound By Prophecy is full of romance, action, mystery, and there are a few twists in the book. Both of the main characters are strong, lovable, and they both stand on equal grounds-one is not seen as less than the other.
Profile Image for Cassandra (Thebookishcrypt).
567 reviews51 followers
November 1, 2015
*I received a copy in exchange for an honest review*
"If I had been a psychotic killer, her mood would have taken the fun out of it."
I've had these books on my shelf for about a month and I'm beating myself up for not reading them any sooner! These were an amazing surprise! Melissa threw me into the middle of the action as soon as I flipped it open and I loved it! That was one of the best beginnings I have had the pleasure of reading. It captivated me from the start and it didn't let up. It was difficult to catch my breath and I wasn't doing anything but reading! The characters are wonderful and complex, I love Aern so much! You see some wonderful character developments and I could not put this book down for my life! This book has it all, I found myself smiling like a lunatic one minute and the next tearing up. Give this a chance please! Melissa is now one of my favorite authors!
I forgot to mention that this has one of the best villains yet! Morgan is my favorite from now on!
Profile Image for Jennifer.
Author 24 books550 followers
November 2, 2017
Melissa Wright's novels never fail to deliver stories that will wrap you up in a world filled with action, romance and magic. Her new series not only lives up to the standard of "The Frey Saga," but surpasses it. Set in the present day urban city of your imagination, the title character, Aern, is just another guy trying to make his way. Except Aern isn't just any ordinary guy. He's a Descendant of a race that has the ability to compel humans to his will. Trouble is, his brother has an extra ability, to compel other Descendants. Aern has to find a way to stop his brother and give his people another chance, even if it means changing the prophecy. Question is, can Aern change the prophecy, or will he discover he is already bound by it? Another gripping, spellbinding read from Melissa Wright.
Profile Image for Haley.
1,251 reviews105 followers
Want to read
April 18, 2013
Profile Image for Lovász Szilárd.
1 review3 followers
April 30, 2015
I read this book and I absolutly like it. I mean the characters are good, the story is amazing! I am thinking that I gonna read it again this summer just for fun!
Profile Image for Jenn Bradshaw.
190 reviews4 followers
February 2, 2018
One of three protagonists, Aern, brother of the antagonist, Morgan, hands the “chosen” too the Division, a choice that he believes will keep her safe from Morgan’s hands. Aern is caught by his evil brother, Morgan. Emily, the chosen’s sister, rescues him, only to hold him captive as she searches for Brianna, her sister. When they make it to the Division, he finds out that his chosen is a decoy, as well as a prophet. This is a quick paced adventure taking place on modern day Earth, but might as well be an alternate universe, plus it is captivating from the first paragraph to the last words. There is indeed a sequel to this, and I expect it to be done in the VERY near future, so keep an eye out for it.
Profile Image for Karielle at Books à la Mode.
330 reviews83 followers
June 5, 2013
Aern seeks to protect Emily, a refugee of his kind, as well as a great secret of an omnipotent prophecy under the care of the Council. He refuses to join the Division—a darker, more corrupt ordeal—even though both authorities may hold the key to the future's safety—and not to mention his own. His struggle with his identity, bloodline, and his vengeful evil brother will all make his job harder, that's for sure... but it's the elusive and ever-obscure prophecy itself—the one he trusted wholly and upon which he depended—that will surprise him.

Wright builds a beautifully dangerous and complex fantasy world, but her characters lack realistic development and sympathetic touch. I couldn't relate to or get myself to like any of them. They felt detached, robotic, and it feels like they were only formed solely on paper. This made the plot difficult to follow and moreover, rather uninteresting; if I don't like the characters, I'm not going to like the story.

Most of the book is composed of explanation of Aern's dark world, and a back-and-forth exchange between Emily's destiny and Aern's role in it. Thus, I felt there was way too much talk and hardly any action. Even from the beginning, I felt like I had walked into the story in medias res; there was so much unexplained and uneventful stuff going on (which I assumed would later be elaborated upon, as part of the climax, but alas, it wasn't) and it just didn't click with me. I was impressed by the few action sequences present, though; they are cleverly simulated and don't skimp on the blood and vicious good vs. evil interaction.

I love the different powers that these descendants of ancient masters possess. Wright imaginatively portrays the magical elements of the characters who struggle to survive.

Suspenseful // Doesn't hold back on the danger and violence // Fully developed and fascinating urban fantasy world // Lots of plot twists I didn't see coming

Boring most of the time // Dialogue-driven but weak in plot // Unrealistic and unexpected romance // Unmemorable characters // Bland, ordinary writing style // Anticlimactic

I had trouble keeping up with Bound by Prophecy because most of dialogue, characters, and style are inadvertently boring. It flows in sequence and isn't hard to comprehend, it's just hard to really become immersed in. This first installment of the Descendants series does have its redeeming points, including a well-instigated paranormal setting and exciting powers, but overall, nothing blew me away.

Rating: 5 out of 10 hearts (3 stars): Doesn't particularly light any of my fires; I feel indifferent about this book.

Complimentary copy provided by author in exchange for an honest and unbiased review as part of the Itching for Books virtual book tour (thank you!).
Profile Image for Tressa (Wishful Endings).
1,720 reviews182 followers
October 8, 2013
4.5 stars.

I read this book in, literally, one day. It pulled me right in and kept me there. It wasn't so much that it was a page turner, because it was, that kept me engaged. It was more because there were these moments and conversations during the downtime when the characters were just waiting, even as danger is chasing them, that brought depth to the story and characters. It helped that the plot was fairly interesting as well.

I have to say I absolutely loved the characters! Aern is very intriguing, confident, protective, and mysterious. He kind of gave me a little of the good guy vibe even though he is rough around the edges. I loved him! Emily is really strong, a survivor, but also a protector (she's tried to keep her and her sister together and safe for some time). She is sweet even though she is no longer innocent. I loved how they interacted with each other. Then there were several great side characters that were individual and strong in their own ways: Brianna, Morgan, and Brendan. So many contrasts and different interests being played out.

There is a prophecy that is being played out in this story. We aren't told for some time what it involves. I started to get a little impatient because I wanted to know what it was and understand what was going on. Wright does a good job of giving us pieces of things: the prophecy, the characters, the Division and Council so that you are waiting for the next piece to get a complete picture.

I really enjoyed this! I would have given it a full 5 stars, but I wanted more history or back story on where these magical people came from and more aggressive planning from the Division - not so much waiting for Morgan to attack.

If you enjoy reading YA Paranormal Fantasy, then I would definitely pick this up! I can't wait for the next book! Thank goodness it is scheduled to come out in November, so I won't have to wait a whole year. :)

Content: Some making out and a few mild swear words.
Source: Received a copy for review from tour host in exchange for an honest review.
You can find my original book tour post on my blog.
Profile Image for Ornella.
1,146 reviews82 followers
June 6, 2013
This was a short book and it kept my interest through out. While this was by no means a mastermind plot it was entertaining and solid.

I really liked the world building and the characters in this one. Like I said before the plot wasn't mind-blowing by any means and while there were some twists it was nothing that I hadn't already figured out before. With that said, what really shined here were the characters, their interactions and the world building. I'm still a bit unclear on some aspects of their history and how exactly their powers work, but for the most part it was really well done, easily followed and I could easily see myself there.

For characters we have Aern, out main guy, who I really liked. He was resourceful, stood by his principles and fought for his people and his love. Then we have Brianna and Emily. We don't really get to see much of Brianna since she is already in a safe house for most of the book, but once she is introduced, I immediatly liked her. Might be cause I'm biased when it comes to Seers/Prophets whatever you want to call them. She was quiet and kinda of gave off that aura of being unassuming but she had a tough quiet authority that I fully appreciated.

Lastly, we have Emily, Brianna's sister. She was resourceful as well, and tough. She took things in stride for the most part, while running for her life with a stranger. She was determined to save her sister and she would do whatever it was to make that happen. It didn't hurt that she could kick some ass too :)

The romance was slow, tentative, natural, and quite realistic. There were no love triangles. Thank God! And the romance was really more of a backdrop to the whole book, which was nice. They had more pressing matter,s what with the war and the prophecy and his psycho brother, to be going all angsty about the romance.

All in all, this was a short, but solid start to a new series, which I'll be keeping my eye on.
Profile Image for sandra.
540 reviews
January 31, 2021
¡¡Qué libro!! Me ha encantado más de lo que esperaba y es todo un alivio, la verdad. Aern creo que es una maravilla de persona y me he enamorado de él completamente <3 Y Emily... Ha sido refrescante leer una protagonista tan dura, fuerte y luchadora, que no se siente intimidada ante nada ni nadie. Brianna también me ha caído bien, aunque con ella iba un poco recelosa ante un triángulo, pero para nada. La única pareja indiscutible es la de Aern y Emily... Y son muy aksjhsa como pareja. De verdad. Aunque la historia transcurre en un lapso de una semana más o menos, su amor es puro e inocente, y me he creído su relación. Mi escena favorita de ellos dos es cuando se acurrucan por primera vez en la cama, además de esa en el hotel cuando se matan vivos jajaja <3

Al principio iba un poco perdida con todo eso de la profecía y tal. Pero poco a poco se va entendiendo.

Sin duda es un libro que recomiendo mucho mucho. Mi única pega es que me ha sabido a poco y me hubiese gustado más explicaciones de este nuevo mundo. Así qué 4'5!!
Profile Image for Evelyn Doyle.
44 reviews1 follower
September 19, 2014
This book committed an unpardonable sin. The reader is made to feel like they've joined a group in mid-conversation, where everyone else already knows what's going on. Nothing is introduced or explained. The reader isn't welcome or included. They're just dropped into a mid-story, and is expected to hit the ground running. Basic environment isn't explained. We see the narrator is different than regular humans. But how? What is he, exactly? What are his type's origins? What is the political system he references? What is the 'world' social dynamic that's apparently in danger? In short, why should I care about him?

And, unforgivably, readers are not allowed to know what the main characters know. They're deliberately kept in ignorance. There's no good reason for this tactic — especially when it lasts for almost the entire book. It's not suspenseful. It's just frustrating. If the book were a person, he'd be the rude guy that belittles everyone, but people would continue to engage with him in the belief he has hidden depths they'll discover eventually.

But they won't.
Profile Image for Brittany | BookRamblings.
275 reviews36 followers
July 9, 2013
I have read the first draft of this as a beta reader for the author and I can tell you it looks amazing!! You're all in for a treat. I won't tell you much, just tease you by telling you the story is written absolutely beautifully. Detail is described so the reader has a rather vivid image in their head of everything that happens. The plot is fast paced with unexpected twist along the way. Melissa, You did one hell of a job writing this and I can't wait to see the end copy if this was only the draft one :)

End copy is just as action packed, with amazing scenes showing the amazingly described relationship between Emily and Aern. It only shares parts of clues along the way, slowly revealing all the pieces of the puzzle so that when a twist comes, you really are surprised!! :) x
Profile Image for Jennifer.
Author 24 books550 followers
November 2, 2017
Melissa Wright's novels never fail to deliver stories that will wrap you up in a world filled with action, romance and magic. Her new series not only lives up to the standard of "The Frey Saga," but surpasses it. Set in the present day urban city of your imagination, the title character, Aern, is just another guy trying to make his way. Except Aern isn't just any ordinary guy. He's a Descendant of a race that has the ability to compel humans to his will. Trouble is, his brother has an extra ability, to compel other Descendants. Aern has to find a way to stop his brother and give his people another chance, even if it means changing the prophecy. Question is, can Aern change the prophecy, or will he discover he is already bound by it? Another gripping, spellbinding read from Melissa Wright.
Profile Image for Dianne.
6,765 reviews582 followers
Want to read
December 9, 2013

$50 Amazon Gift Card and an ebook of Shifting Fate (US & INT)
2 - Paperback copies of Bound by Prophecy and Shifting Fate (US ONLY)
3 - ebook of Shifting Fate (US & INT)
 At Tome Tender - Ends December 15th.
Profile Image for Allison.
286 reviews
September 9, 2015
I only continued to read this book because it had so many great reviews. But I have to wonder what rock those people were living under to have not read a book that is actually written well. So much information about the characters and plot were missing. The author left so much unsaid that as the reader you have fill in the blanks or create a back stories. It was almost as if the author had not thought of the entire story before putting it on paper. Conversations were left open and hanging. I can only hope that her books become better for future readers but I'm not sure about that. I also hope that the previous readers expand their reading to include books that actually have developed characters and plots.
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