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Syney Andrews has secrets—she just doesn’t know she has them. She spent the last eighteen years in the human realm with her adoptive parents unaware of her real powers and role in Altera Realm.

Altera Realm has been at war for well over a century and is connected to the Human Realm by a portal and no human knows it exists. It is home to the five old and great races—Magic Users, Lycins, Vampires, Daemons, and Shifters. Each race is an entity of their own with its own life purpose, rulers and guarded secrets.

Syney is the prophesized “chosen one”, the one destined to end the over hundred-year war and become queen of the Magic Users. Not that Syney wants to rule or even knows anything about Altera. Falling in love with her Lycin Protector, a crime punishable by death, only serves to make matters worse and Syney’s new life more complicated.

447 pages, Paperback

First published January 1, 2013

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About the author

Jennifer Collins

6 books10 followers
I am an avid reader of just about anything (even the dreaded non-fiction), a high school English teacher, and a writer. I write because I have to not because I want to. Discovery is the first novel in the Altera Realm trilogy, my first published novel. Feel free to ask any questions and check out my website for some awesome extras!

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5 stars
19 (59%)
4 stars
8 (25%)
3 stars
4 (12%)
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1 (3%)
Displaying 1 - 13 of 13 reviews
Profile Image for Carrie (Book Fairy) Fort .
758 reviews168 followers
August 14, 2014
Favorite Lines “But you will, my dear. Yours is a great destiny. I’ve seen your future, and it’s so beautiful.”

“All she knew for certain was she felt completely safe with Hunter—the wolf and the man.”
“The only thing he knew for certain anymore was that this girl was going to be the death of him, and there was no way he could live without her. Not a very good outlook on their future.”

“He had missed this. The annoying girl who got under his skin. He missed her.”

“That’s when he realized he would never get over Syney. He needed her almost as much as he needed air to breathe. He was screwed.”

Holy smokes talk about a paranormal tear jerker! Syney gets swept up in a different world, different family, and different life when Hunter shows up at her home to take her to the Village! After almost getting killed and watching a hunter turn into a wolf, then shooting purple lighting out of her hand she's done! Then when she gets a call saying the bad guys have her family she runs back to them.
Hunter can't believe his charge he's her protector and there is something about her that he can't explain.
His story is filled with magic, betrayal, heartbreak, love, laughter, anger, vampires, Lycan, and sadness! Watch a young girl grow into a queen and all that entails!
All Syney wants is to be happy but is that in the cards for her?
I am dying for book 2! I can't wait to see what happens with this amazing story by this fabulous author!

I was given book by author in exchange for an honest review

170 reviews
August 21, 2013
I've stated before that I have a special fondness in may heart for YA that breaks the mold. Discovery doesn't just break it, but somehow creates a new mold that is unique and beautiful. Collins threw so many curve balls in this fast paced plot, I stopped trying to figure out what was going to happen on the next page and just relished the feeling of entering a whole new dimension of the genre while getting to know the characters and having my heart broken too many times to count. Bravo, Mrs. Collins, bravo! Now hurry up and get me part 2!
Profile Image for Linda.
1,141 reviews
August 30, 2014
3.5 / 4 Stars

I'll have to give the author this, I spent quite a bit of time thinking "WTH?" which kept me reading this even when these characters really started to get to me...and not always in a good way. I waffled so much with Syney, although the others had me sitting on the fence too. I wasn't sure if I loved them or hated them, but came to realize it was their choices and decisions that made me want to bang my head against the wall. Which is a good thing, cause how this book ended made me so MAD. I was mad at Hunter, but also Cass, Helen, and Leaf, basically everyone who knew why Hunter did what he did. I'm not sure I'm liking where this is going which is why I rated the book 3.5. The 4 comes in because, damn, I would not want to be in Syney's place, even though a part of me thinks she deserves SOME pain after the Gabe situation.

Syney is a long lost Magic User princess sent to hide in the human realm as a baby. She knows she was adopted, but doesn't know that she isn't human, nor that she is the prophesied savior of her people. She first learns of this after visiting a physic at a fair, that results in a group of people later coming to retrieve her and return her to Altera. This is when we first meet Cass, one of three daughters of the current queen, and Hunter, Syney's Lycin protector. Unaware of the danger she is in, nor the hardships she'll face, after the first attempt on her life and the losses as a result, Syney agrees to return with the others to take back her rightful place. Along the way she'll pick up an unlikely ally, Gabe, who also happens to be a vampire, and not necessarily welcome back at the Village in Altera. And even though many are excited to have her found, there are others that will do anything to keep the prophesy from coming true. What further complicates everything is that Syney is falling in love with her protector, and that is strictly forbidden and can result in death to them both. At this point, I have to say that I liked Syney. Even though she unknowingly put herself in danger, I understood perfectly why she would do so...even as a part of me wished she would have just said something to Hunter. Putting myself in her shoes, having just met him, I can see why trusting him would be hard...even if he did save her life. Things just snow balled from here. Hunter was rough around the edges, but came across as a good guy...even when he was being difficult and distant. With his past, it was understandable why he would be like that, plus he took his role as her protector very serious and he grew up in Altera bound by the restrictions and laws. He knew falling in love with Syney is taboo and tried to fight it, his actions (or lack thereof) made things worse, and just when she needed him the most. Of all of these characters, I liked Noelle, Lead, and Helen. Aside from getting so mad at a few of them at the end. Noelle, Syney's first friend and a handmaiden at the Village. Leaf, commander of the Lycin guards, and Hunter's friend. And Helen, the oldest daughter of the current queen, and Syney's instructor on all things Altera.

What bothered me so much was the choices and decisions some of these characters made throughout the book. There is a lot going on, and so many mysteries. Gabe has his own agenda and I am still completely baffled as to his link with the Daemons, and what his end goal is. All I know is he is manipulative and a user. I'm not sure if he really does care for Syney or if all of his actions are all part of his end game. And the fact that she is so damned blind to his actions disappointed me and had me turning away from her. I had to repeatedly remind myself this is an 18 year old girl in the midst of something that I'm not sure I would ever want to face. And the people most in contact with her either wanted to use her or kill her. By the end, I wasn't sure if the author wanted me to empathize with her or again lead me into an ambush, because that is what it felt like. I feel like Syney is going to do something really stupid in the next book, and well, she already did in this one and got a pass. Choices. She took one path when she could have tried something else. Then there is Hunter. Why he did what he did, I mostly understood. Except for Fern. Not sure how you come back from that and what it will mean for him and Syney.

So yeah, the book definitely engaged me, but I have not been this pissed off at the of a book in quite a while. That doesn't mean that I won't give the next book a try, I'm just hoping I don't find myself on the same roller-coaster emotionally connecting to these characters as I did in this book. I know others loved the book, and I'm sure I'll have friends who will think I am absolutely crazy for my reactions to the story. If you like YA books with intrigue, romance, betrayal, and the paranormal then you'll like this one. It wasn't perfect, but an interesting read all the same.

Profile Image for SARIT.
180 reviews
August 26, 2014

The tale is constantly shifting perspectives between characters. and has a lot of twists and turns. Even though there were various typical paranormal beings (shape-shifters, Lycins, vampires, magic users) they were unique in their personalities, and their abilities as well. I found myself enjoying the stories of each of them.

Altera a world Magic, a world that has been at war for far too long that it's races and a divisions of classes and race had is a so much of animosity.

Syney, Andrews the main character an 18 year old. Syney very young and naive but a she is real, strong and honest heroine, who raised in the Human Realm. She knew that she was adopted. her parents raised her with love and care.

After Syney meets a psychic at the local carnival her life changes forever. She was brought over to Altera and finds herself wrapped up in the politics of Royal life.

According to the story, she is the “Chosen One”. that sent away from Altera by Amelia's, her mother, magic to be hidden among the humans until she was ready to return and take the throne. She is the true queen of Magic of Altera world . that meant to unite and bring peace to this world that has been at war for far too long.

Syney must prepare herself to become queen of a world she grew up outside of, and to live up to the high expectations of her people who think she will save them all from war. She will do it with the help of the Lycins who protect the royal magic users with their lives, Gabe, Noelle, and a few other friends she meets along the way.

Hunter kind and patient, at times seemed rough . his developing feelings with Syney. This proves exceptionally hard because he's her Protector and has to be her constant shadow. He is the one that swept Syney to a different world, family, and life when he shows up at her home to take her to the Village!

Mellisandrianna The current Queen of Altera isn’t too excited to see Syney and isn’t eager to give up her place on the throne should Syney decide she is ready to take it.

Gabe, Syney's vampire friend. snarky and annoying at times, but you could tell he had Syney’s best interests at heart and I found myself really interested to find out what are his real motives.

Noelle Syney's handmaiden. I was curious to find what was her big secret is.

if you look for a good story with engaging characters, romantic angst, betrayal and drama I would recommend this book you .especially if you like your paranormal, in small doses.

Profile Image for Librarian Judith.
79 reviews3 followers
January 30, 2015
Welcome to the Altera Realm, a world that lives alongside our own, albeit in another dimension so to speak. Syney was born in that realm, the last of a line of rulers. Her mother, in order that the line might continue, sent her out of time and place--to the human realm in the future, where Syney is discovered and adopted by a human couple, not knowing anything of her past or the fact that at 18 she comes into magical powers--and is the Chosen One who is prophesized to bringing the discordant parts of her home back together.

The Altera Realm is made up of five races: Magic Users, Lycins (the protectors of the Magic Users), Vampires, Daemons, and Shifters. Plots and intrigues about--and as in any court, political machinations behind the scenes. The ruling queen and her heir-apparent are not happy with the idea that someone is coming to take the throne--Chosen One or not. They are not willing to give up without a fight and some pretty underhanded dealings.

A lot is covered in this book--and it's not a short book. There's a lot that goes on and a lot of characters. It's interesting to see the world through several of their eyes--the author chooses a different character each chapter to be the point of view character. It's interesting seeing what is happening through them.

The author does a good job at building the new world--the relationships between the different races make sense and it's easy to see from the backstory she slips in how the Altera Realm came to be splintered.

This is the first book of the series, so there is not a neat wrapping up of endings. I mention that only because there are some who don't like open-ended books in series. Me? It makes me just that much anxious to read the second book in the series.
Profile Image for Lillian.
6 reviews3 followers
June 10, 2013
What an exhilarating read! The pace is perfect; forcing you to keep turning the page, but also drawing out the suspense. Plus the plot and character development is superb. I'd recommend this to readers interested in a thrillingly dramatic fantasy novel that pulls you in and makes you wish it will never end.
Profile Image for Elana Banks.
5 reviews2 followers
January 30, 2014
I loved this novel and can't wait to read the rest! There were only a few minor things I didn't like about it. Great read!
Profile Image for Kim Jackson.
231 reviews2 followers
August 21, 2014
This was an awesome fantasyland with a little cliff hanger ending.
Profile Image for Melanie Marsh.
463 reviews18 followers
September 6, 2013
I am seriously in love with this series. I don’t know exactly what it is, but I have fallen in love with the Altera Realm and its inhabitants. Obviously, some of them are assholes, which is true for any world, but overall, I think the world that Collins has built here is unique and engaging in a way that I have not seen before. She has built a world full of beings are so unique from each other in not only their personalities, but their abilities as well. I keep forgetting that this is a made up world. The characters are so human, yet we know they are not. They love and hate just as humans do. They are just a little bit different. They look like we do, but they have things they can do that we can’t.

Syney was raised in the Human Realm. She knows she was adopted. Her parents raised her well and were caring and all the things good parents should be. After Syney meets a psychic at the local carnival her life changes forever. She is the “Chosen One”. She was sent away from Altera by her mother’s magic to be hidden among the humans until she was ready to return and take the throne. She is meant to become Queen of the Magic Users in Altera and unite and bring peace to a world that has been at war for far too long. She’s just a teenager, but her fate was sealed the day she was born. She is found and brought over to Altera and finds herself wrapped up in the politics of Royal life. The current Queen isn’t too excited to see Syney and isn’t eager to give up her place on the throne should Syney decide she is ready to take it. According to the story, Syney is the true queen and the throne is rightly hers. With the help of her protectors, Lycins who protect the royal magic users with their lives, her vampire friend Gabe, her handmaiden Noelle, and a few other friends she meets along the way, Syney must prepare herself to become queen of a world she grew up outside of, and to live up to the high expectations of her people who think she will save them all from war. Seems like quite a lot to put on a teenager!

I was a little bit intimidated when I first opened this book. It’s a pretty heavy book, and has a smaller font than I am used to. It’s a pretty long book. But once I started reading it, I couldn’t put it down. I read late into the night and smacked myself in the face with my kindle at least 3 times after falling asleep. I kept telling myself, just one more chapter and I’ll put it down. I just wanted to know what was going to happen!

I enjoyed the stories of each character. I think Collins does a great job of giving the reader enough information about the characters at just the right time. She doesn’t tell you everything at once, but allows you to learn about them as you would anyone else, a piece at a time. It gives a quality of mystery to each of them, while seeing them as real people with flaws at the same time. I do wish there was more about what was going on with Noelle and what her big secret is, but that is more about me being impatient than anything.

The relationship between Hunter and Syney made me so mad!
There is a ton of animosity between the races and a definite division of classes and race in this book. I wasn’t mad that they were together, I was mad about the way it was going.

Gabe the Vampire is a character that drove me crazy! He was snarky and annoying at times, but you could tell he had Syney’s best interests at heart. I wanted to know so much more about him than we are told in the first book, but never fear, we do find out more about him in the second book.

This book made me feel a variety of emotions. I was happy for them when good things happened. I was mad or sad when bad things went down. I really never expected to feel so many different emotions during this book.

As I said before, I love this book. It was easy to follow, but not in a bad way. It definitely kept my attention and got me wrapped up in the story of this whole other world and its people. It reminded me that sometimes you can make changes in your life with little things, and sometimes, just because things have been a certain way for a long time, doesn’t mean they can’t change.

I would recommend this book to anyone who likes a good story with engaging characters, romantic angst, betrayal and drama. If you aren’t really into paranormal, but don’t mind it in small doses, this is good for you. It has a little bit of everything. The four races are Magic Users, Lycins, Shifters, and Vampires. The paranormal elements aren’t really in your face the way they are in some books.

So really, go check out this book. And I hope you love it as much as I do. I can’t wait for the 2nd book in the series to come out so you guys can check it out. It’s just as awesome. I think we readers have a lot to look forward to from this author.

Profile Image for Allura.
81 reviews7 followers
September 10, 2013
*I received an eCopy from the author in exchange for an honest review.
I was really excited to dive into this book upon reading the blurb. It falls into some of my most beloved categories young adult with some paranormal elements. I really did enjoy this book however it was a little tough for me to get into at first. I've only just begun reading books written in the third person. It used to be I struggled connecting with the characters because I couldn't see their world through their eyes. Discovery really threw me for a loop at first because the book switches between many different characters' POV. Once I got past the initial shock of the POV swapping I was hooked. I found the story compelling and rather true the teenage life despite the fantasy elements.

I enjoyed almost all the characters and what they offered the story. There are so many that it would be difficult to describe why I liked each one so I'll pick a few that had the most impact on me:

Syney, who is also the very main character, started out a bit grating for me. I didn't hate her but I didn't love her either. She seemed to naive (even though she was so young) that at times I found myself wanting to scream "WHAT are you doing?!" But as the story progressed and I realized all the difficult aspects of her new life I felt sympathy for her. I found myself asking whether I'd make similar decisions in her place. At the end of the book I saw real potential for her to grow as a character and into someone who would be fit to be a queen.

Hunter was kind and patient, however rough he seemed at times. I enjoyed his thoughtfulness and seriously felt bad about the cards he was continuously dealt. I didn't always agree with or like his choices but in the end I felt he always made them with Syney and others best interest at heart.

Mellisandrianna was a horrible, conniving person. Yet, I still can't figure her out. The end of the book left me with more questions about her than I had from the very beginning. I think there is a lot more to her than I thought.

Gabe, much like Mellisandrianna, seems to possess some questionable qualities and I'm really interested to find out what his motives are in the end. I know he has a bigger picture in mind but I'm more than curious to find out what that it is.

For having so many characters, I felt the Collins really gave each one their own voice and developed them into "people" a reader can really care about. The story itself had a lot of twists and turns and elicited a lot of emotion from me. I enjoyed the story line, and like I said once I got past the switching POV's, I was sucked in. I felt the world to be interesting and although there were various typical paranormal beings (shape-shifters, Lycins, vampires, magic users) I though the story was it's own which is important in a market saturated with similar retelling of the same stories.

I am excited to see what's in store for these characters and would give this book my recommendation for those who like young adult paranormal. Just be prepared, it's a long book but don't let this intimidate you!
Profile Image for Joan.
207 reviews7 followers
July 4, 2013
DISCLAIMER: The author is my friend.
Jennifer Collins has written a thrilling saga that even readers who are not fans of "gothic, young adult...fantasy" will love. At its core lies a timeless story of forbidden romance and young adults coming of age. Toss in some tragedy, an evil queen, and astonishing magic and you have a truly engaging page-turner. Collins draws the large cast of characters well, making them memorable as the point of view shifts throughout the tale. As the first of a trilogy, the final chapters create a tantalizing cliffhanger that left me wishing I could open Book 2 right away. How long will we have to wait?
Profile Image for Sophie.
175 reviews
April 24, 2014
How would you feel if you wake up one day to find out that you are the 'chosen one'? That's what happened to Syney Andrews. She awakes to discovery that she is the last child of a royal bloodline and has magical powers. And her journey is just beginning.

The concept of this story is well written. However, the actual story line makes no sense at times, and I felt like the author included things just to include them.

Although it was a nice book to read, I would not recommend it to a friend.
Profile Image for Jill Winhold.
14 reviews
September 6, 2016
I started this book less than 12 hours ago, and I finished it. I couldn't put it down. The characters are so well-developed, I truly felt their pain when they were hurt and smiled when they were happy. It has a lot of different pieces, but they all add so much to the story! I definitely recommend this book. I just started #2!
Displaying 1 - 13 of 13 reviews

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