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Firstborn (Descendants of the House of Bathory #2)
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(Descendants of the House of Bathory #2)

4.26  ·  Rating details ·  442 ratings  ·  120 reviews
Face-to-face with her past, Audra Ellison now knows the secret she gave up everything—including her memory—to protect. A secret made vulnerable by her rediscovery, and so powerful neither the Historian nor the traitor Prince Nikola will ever let her live to keep it.

With Luka in the Historian’s custody and the clock ticking down on his life, Audra only has one impossible ch
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published May 2nd 2017 by Howard Books
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Eve Recinella (Between The Bookends)


descriptionNot a huge fan of this cover. It's a little TOO busy in my opinion. I much prefer the cover for book one.description

descriptionAfter I finished book one (The Progeny) last year I wanted to cry over the cliffhanger we were left with. Now finally a year later we have book two. And I LOVED it. Not as much as book one, but it was still a phenomenal follow-up (conclusion??) to this series.


Again we have the same fantastic writing. Crazy breakneck pace (more about this in a minute). Twists and turns. Great main characters
Jun 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller, christian
Full review now posted!
Original review can be found at Booknest.

It’s always fun to find a duology. They are one of the more uncommon story forms, and I think that’s sad. It’s an under appreciated method of storytelling, and I’m excited to seem more of them being written. I didn’t know going into The Progeny that it was the first of a duology, so that was a pleasant surprise. Firstborn was actually more enjoyable and faster paced than its predecessor, which was a surprise.

Again, Lee’s work was be
I received this from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

So, I'm a big fan of Tosca Lee, and loved the first book in the series, The Progeny, was very good. This second book was kind of disappointing. I don't know if it was the time between the first volume and this one, but I felt lost for most of the book. Aside from a few surprises, it felt like I was stuck in a game of World of Warcraft: running, running, running, talk a few minutes, running, running running, talk a few minutes... you
April Sarah
Apr 19, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: owned, signed
I can't tell you how excited I was to finally get my hands on a copy of this book. There were so many questions left by the first book that I just needed to be answered. And boy was this one a whirlwind of a story.

The settings (and clothing) were once again beautifully laid out. And the pacing of this book, holy cow, you could never stop to breathe. The action, and hits, just kept on coming.

I struggled a bit with the pacing because of that. At points, the continues running got repetitive and f
Oct 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
While this is a sequel, Tosca Lee has included a great recap of The Progeny at the beginning of this book so it could be read as a standalone -- though I think the story is so complex and fantastical that readers will get much more out of it if they've read The Progeny first. And, because of those complexities, I really appreciated the recap -- even though I read the first book. Great way to kick-start my memory and get all the players in place in my mind.

A fast paced thriller with so many twist
Jun 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed the character, Audra Ellison, in this book. There were some unexpected things happen in this book for me some good and some not so good. I think that made this book so much better. This set of book has some magic and great characters and supernatural and more. I was blown away by how much I loved this series. Great job, Tasca Lee! *This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.*
Fiction Aficionado
May 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thriller
Tosca Lee has done it again! This sequel to The Progeny is just as fast-paced and thrilling as its predecessor, and the surprises and revelations keep coming! If you haven’t read The Progeny yet, I strongly suggest you do so before picking this one up. If, like me, it’s been over a year since you read The Progeny, never fear; Firstborn provides a succinct recap that will put you straight back into the story, and then picks up right where The Progeny left off.

There is very little I can say about
Jan 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
Seek and you will find!


By: Tosca Lee

Book two of the continuing saga of Audra, Luka and the whole gang. Traveling from country to country, running to save their lives at times and seeking answers as they go. Many plots and twists unravel as Audra’s memory slowly returns. How can they really keep going and survive the journey, and how can they trust anyone?

The first book in the series was called “The Progeny”, and I wondered how could the story be even better in the second book. I loved
Pages And Beyond
Jul 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Chelo Biggerstaff
Dec 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
My rating is 4.5. The only deduction I have is for a few places where the flow was a little off due to, I think, editing.

Audra is back, and she's on the run. Luka has been captured. Some of her friends are dead. She's no longer sure who is on her side and who isn't. But she finally knows why she had her memory erased-- and she's willing to fight to keep that reason safe.

But the Historian has Luka, the man she loves, and she will fight for him, too. In fact, she's going to fight for all the Prog
Natalie Walters
Jan 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The hunt continues...

Ending Progeny on such a cliff-hanger made the time between finishing it and starting Firstborn excruciating!

Sometimes authors can't pull off the epic adventure they begin and sequels sometimes lag but not this one. From page one I was thrust back into Audra's world and the hunt for the Historian at the cost of many lives. The pacing along with the action kept me turning the pages, "Just one more chapter" until the jaw-dropping conclusion. The unique development of each cha
Amanda Forsting
Nov 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Action packed and suspenseful, Tosca creates characters you want to love and a world you have never dreamed of before; She pulls you into it with vivid imagination and creativity, and makes you want to scream or cry or laugh throughout the journey. Once I started it I could not put it down! A very great finish to an enticing and fresh idea in literary form!!! Bravo Tosca Lee- I’m a fan for life!
Sep 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Aglhjriendhchamcgzchx. That's what my brain sounds like right now. Hoooooly cow. I think my brain exploded. At least twice. Usually I can see the plot twists coming. Hahaha NOPE.
*bows in respect*
Tosca Lee, you are the queen of unpredictability. I can't even right now. At all.
Thing I CAN see coming:
Worst. Book hangover. Ever.
Read this humans!!
Ralene Burke
Mar 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An unbelievable ending to a fascinating storyline! Tosca does it again. She takes us all over Europe and back again as we continue the journey we began in Progeny. Action-packed, unique characters, and a ticking time bomb (not literally) will keep readers on the edge of their seats until the last page. I've always loved Tosca's attention to detail and this story doesn't disappoint. Can't wait to see what's next!
Deirdre Metcalf
Jun 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017-reads
Amazing duology!!
I enjoyed the second book as much as the first. If you're looking for a super fast paced thriller this series is for you. The world is very unique and fascinating. It's set in present day and takes place in several countries. You do get know the MC, but it's the story is driven by action. Please give us a third book.
Randy Tramp
Sep 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Audra Ellison risks her life to protect her friends from the Historian. That protection means Audra will have to kill the Historian.

What a story and conclusion. I kept reading to discover mysteries that were planted along the way. The characters were so good I'll miss them. They had several layers and each layer was brought out in an amazing way.

If action wasn't happening, there was a build-up to it. I was glued to the pages, racing to find out what happens next.

Very good read. I highly recommen
Amanda Ellis
Mar 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
4 Stars

I was provided an ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

This book had a lot of what I really loved in the first book – action, adventure, and travelling through Europe. Despite this, it did not hold the same emotional punch as the first book (romantically and otherwise). I think this was okay though, since the emotions were built up so well in Progeny that I still knew where everyone stood in this installment. This book simply didn’t have the same depth as the f
Jan 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Really, this book was 3 1/2 stars review for me. Since it has been a while from when I read The Progeny, I was very glad for the short summary at the beginning of the book. Even with that summary, I felt a bit lost as the book careens through the very fast paced plot. The first book had action but it was tempered with the depth of the plot, also. This book seemed to be all action with hardly any time to slow down and allow us to savor the all of the complexities it offered. I so wish that these ...more
Alicia Smock
Jul 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The second and final book in Tosca Lee’s Descendants of the House of Bathory Series is by far the best of this historical mystery and suspense miniseries. It picks up right where the last one left off, it explains everything that went unexplained in The Progeny, and readers get more information on the historic serial killer Elizabeth Bathory. All of this mixed with even more fast-paced storytelling and unexpected twists and turns thrown in makes Firstborn a very entertaining read.

Audra Ellison h
Jan 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is one of the fastest paced books I have ever read, and I mean that in the best way possible. I loved The Progeny and was extremely grateful to have been able to read this book early. I loved it. Tosca Lee does not disappoint. Firstborn has some crazy twists and turns and you will find yourself questioning every character and their loyalty. I am a huge fan of historical fiction, thrillers, and books with a hint of romance and this book has all three. Read this book. You won't regret it. Tos ...more
Catherine Payne
Feb 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

I adored Progeny. Tosca Lee's famously beautiful prose in a fast-paced thriller with exceptional twists? It's hard to follow that.

But she did it with Firstborn. Her writing style is, as always, exquisite, but it was the book's pacing that most endeared it to me. It's agonizing to put down, even when read as an ebook (and I'm easily distracted while reading ebooks).

In short, I LOVED it and it's well w
Jason C.
Oct 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Wow. Excellent book with some twists that had me laughing, "Oh man, she WENT there." The characters are richly layered, the prose is evocative, and the plot races toward an explosive finale. I'm sad that the series is over, but boy, what a ride.
This cover though!

Apr 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
‘Today, Elizabeth Bathory’s place of burial is not known; her grave has not been found.’

From Internet sources we discover impressive biographical information about brilliant novelist Tosca Lee, a bestselling American author of historical novels and supernatural thrillers. She is best known for her exploration of maligned characters, prodigious research and vivid imagery. Lee was born in Roanoke, Virginia, United States to a Korean father and Caucasian American mother. Her father, Professor Emeri
Oct 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

The truth of Audra Ellison’s past is revealed, and now the fight for not only her life but all of her people can truly begin in author Tosca Lee’s second and final book in the Descendants of the House of Bathory series, Firstborn. Here is the synopsis.

The Synopsis

Face-to-face with her past, Audra Ellison now knows the secret she gave up everything—including her memory—to protect. A secret made v
Jul 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
I struggled a little with the first in the series, Progeny, as it felt half-baked. When it ended I felt it was half-time in the telling of the story. However, Firstborn has none of those issues. This was excellent and I enjoyed it thoroughly. I think you could read this without the reading Progeny because there is a very good overview of the first novel in the first chapter and having read it I felt immediately up to date in the story.

Audra Ellison is a tremendous character. She discovers the se
J. F.
Oct 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Book Review: The Progeny, Book 1; First Born, Book 2 (Descendants of the House of Bathory), by Tosca Lee

In the books I've read as a huge fan, Tosca Lee doesn't create protagonists. Instead, she morphs the reader into the protagonist, right down to the soul, the bare feet, the strapped sandals, the vicariousness perceived as a living, breathing creature of that time and world - of Judas Iscariot, the apostle who betrayed Christ; of Eve, the first woman; of the Queen of Sheba; of Ismeni (mother of
Brit Gay
May 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Welcome back to the continuation in the adventures of the progeny: men and women born with innate abilities that assist them to compel people to their will. The audience meets right back up with a few favorites: Audra, Piotrek, Jester, and many more. Audra has been charged with an impossible task as she must find the diary of Elizabeth Bathroy, her ancestor. But more importantly, she must find a way for her people to no longer fear that each moment may be their last. The stakes get much higher a ...more
First up, Firstborn isn’t a pretty little standalone that can be read out of sequence. Stop if you’ve not read The Progeny first, because you will need the information contained it. The four pages of recap really aren’t enough. Because it had been over a year since I’d read it, I actually re-read it before starting in on Firstborn and I was glad I did. The Progeny left readers with a stunning revelation and the narrative of Firstborn picks up where it left off. It moves at a heart attack pace wi ...more
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“Superior storytelling.”
—Publishers Weekly

THE LINE BETWEEN, Tosca's highly-anticipated new thriller (January 2019) is available for pre-order now!

Tosca Lee is the award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of the House of Bathory duology (THE PROGENY and FIRSTBORN--currently in development for TV), ISCARIOT, THE LEGEND OF SHEBA, DEMON: A MEMOIR, HAVAH: THE STORY OF EVE, and the Books of Mor

Other books in the series

Descendants of the House of Bathory (2 books)
  • The Progeny (Descendants of the House of Bathory #1)