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Knightmare Arcanist

(Frith Chronicles #1)

4.33  ·  Rating details ·  63 ratings  ·  42 reviews
Magic. Sailing. A murderer among heroes.

Gravedigger Volke Savan wants nothing more than to be like his hero, the legendary magical swashbuckler, Gregory Ruma. First he needs to become an arcanist, someone capable of wielding magic, which requires bonding with a mythical creature. And he’ll take anything—a pegasus, a griffin, a ravenous hydra—maybe even a leviathan, like R
Kindle Edition, 338 pages
Published June 18th 2019 by Capital Station Books
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4.33  · 
Rating details
 ·  63 ratings  ·  42 reviews

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Merissa (Archaeolibrarian)
Jun 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-adult, fantasy
Knightmare Arcanist is the first book in the Frith Chronicles, and not only will it have you engrossed from the first sentence, but it will definitely leave you wanting more. This is described as Flintlock Fantasy, and I think that is perfect.

Ms. Stovall starts with the world-building immediately, as our two main characters are both apprentice grave-diggers. You find out just what this entails, and how it affects their 'standing' with the community. I thoroughly enjoyed learning about their worl
J Aislynn d'Merricksson
Jun 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Knightmare Arcanist by Shami Stovall was rollicking good fun! It's Jim Butcher's Codex Alera series for YA readers. Stovall is quickly becoming a name I look for. I've read a few of her other works, and she's great at adjusting genres!

We follow Volke, an orphan on the Isle of Ruma, who wants nothing more than to be an Arcanist. These magic users bond with mystical creatures that determine how the magic manifests. Though prohibited from formally participating in the isle's Phoenix Trials to bond
May 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Everything is fine until Volke tries to bond with a phoenix. Shortly afterwords, a knightmare named Luthair bonds with him and they join a guild. When Luthair declares Volke's idol a murderer, it leads to an exiting adventure that fans will love... assuming Volke and Luthair don't scare them first.
It's funny and has a nice bit of sarcasm to it.
It's mystery, after mystery, and doubt after failure.
It's action packed and will leave fans hoping for more.
Annie Rosendale
Jun 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Knightmare Arcanist is an excellent book that I would strongly recommend to people; another by an Author whose work I am coming to love. This book features extremely strong characters, an exciting magical system and world, and a tale that is quite enjoyable.

The characters and their interactions are probably the single strongest aspect of this book. Eventually, there are six young arcanists and their six eladrins (magical companions) that all have distinct personalities, from the driven do-good
Jun 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
If you’re looking for a young adult fantasy with exceptional world building, you will find it here. The magical system was well thought out, where characters gained their powers from a mystical creature that they bonded with. The mystical creatures would determine the unique powers that a person would gain. This allowed for a variety of powers unique to different people. The characters in the story are all strong characters, each with backstories of their own. The entire story was well written, ...more
Jun 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Awesome book

This book was a great start to new series and perfect for fans of action and fantasy. A must read.
Mik Wasiak
Jun 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
It very similar to black clover anime and good read I really like enjoy the story and characters
Jun 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya, fantasy
A fast-paced YA action fantasy. The Knightmare Arcanist has superb world building and that world is populated by some fabulous creatures (I’m a total fan of Luthair). There is a full gamut of well-developed characters which range from fun through nasty all the way to downright crazy. Interesting themes are wound through the story and played out in action. The writing is crisp and concise.

I’d recommend this to anyone interested in YA fantasy!
Jun 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Knightmare Arcanist is the first book in the Frith Chronicles series written by Shami Stovall and is a young adult novel. A captivating action packed mystery that you will not wan to put down. Knightmare Arcanist has an impressive premise, a solid plot, and great action. A well-written story with well-developed characters that will leave you wanting more.
Margaret Adelle
Jun 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Another killer book from Shami Stovall! Our main character Volke was so earnest and dedicated. The plot was intriguing and the world in-depth. There were redemption arcs and giant monster battles (Shami knows how to end a book with a bang).

The only thing I could say against it was that I wished the Ruma reveal hadn't been laid out in the synopsis. It would have had more punch if it had been left secret until the reveal mid-story. But the reasons behind his actions was heartbreaking... and distu
May 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
In this first installment in Frith Chronicles series, Shami Stovall tells the story of Gravedigger Volke Savan who has seen just one dream: to be an arcanist—an individual capable of wielding magic, and leave his gravedigger’s life behind. Volke faces a multitude of hurdles and beats tremendous odds to bond with the mystical knightmare—a creature made of shadow and terror, and realizes his lifelong dream of becoming an arcanist. He can wield magic now, and he gets to train near Master Arcanist G ...more
Jul 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
TL;DR – A superb start to what I’m sure will be a spectacular series!

Ragdoll Rating: 5/5 Buttons

Recommended For: Anyone who loves an easy-to-read tale of magic and heroism

About the Book…

Knightmare Arcanist is the first book in the Frith Chronicles series. It follows a Volke, a gravediggers apprentice who yearns to be an arcanist – a magician paired for life to a magical creature, capable of amazing feats. But the circumstances of his birth make this dream unlikely, until one day everything chang
Jun 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book was an absolutely fantastic start to what I believe will be an excellent series. It is a "juvenile" fantasy, targeted at teenagers, but easily able to be read by adults... except that it does seem to get a bit dark with what another reviewer called "Body Horror" at a couple points for those that worry about that.

This book has excellent characters, starting with the standard "hero's journey" lead seeking to overcome his circumstances of birth, and diversifying into an array of people;
Jun 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
All of this magic and fantasy, bonding with a phoenix, becoming an arcanist…an arcanist is a one of those magical persons we’ve all wished to be…strong, a hero, saving the world. Well that’s how most of them are. I don’t read this stuff BUT, I had a wonderful time with this book. This book has all of the elements a reader wants for a story tale. Good guys, bad guys, action, fantasy, even suspense. It’s all wrapped into a tale we were told in many ways as children but dressed up in a sophisticate ...more
Jun 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
If you like fantasy and magic, then, you need to treat yourself to a copy of this book. I was instantly transported to this world that author, Shami Stovall has created for this book. It was like I could see a movie playing out in my head.

Volke is the outcast. Yet, he is not the only one. There is Illia. She too is an outcast but she is fine with it. In fact, if it was not for her giving Volke the big kick in the butt, he would probably be a gravedigger still and not an arcanist. Volke also wou
Ashley Dawn
Jun 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This author may be a new favorite of mine. I was drawn in from the start and the author didn't really slow at all. The world building and set up are done expertly. I absolutely loved all the creatures. Some I already knew about but there were some amazing new ones that you will love to get to know. The bonding and how the magic manifests is fascinating and I couldn't read the pages fast enough.

The characters, oh the characters! Volke is determined to be an arcanist and is bullheaded enough to ma
Jun 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
4,25 stars

“Knightmare Arcanist” by Shami Stovall features youngsters who want to be arcanists, but have to pass a stringent test in order to earn a bond with the mystical creature who will confer the magical abilities. Unfortunately, training is reserved for the elite, so Volke Savan, gravedigger, has ambition but very little opportunity until he has the chance to bond with a knightmare—a walking suit of armor made from shadows and terror. The drawback is that this is a second bonding, which wil
S. A.
Jun 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: all ages, all genders
Stovall has built a fascinating world for the adventures and coming of age of these apprentice archanists and their pair-bonded magical creatures. The characters are well drawn and grow, and that will likely continue with more in the series. We root for the "underdog," yet he and his "sister" are also paired with privileged apprentices and all learn from each other and find ways to become a team. I especially love the Pillar of Virtues as an underlying theme. Has the appeal and potential growth ...more
Jun 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: june-2019

The Knightmare Arcanist is the first book in the Frith Chronicles, following pair of young teens who consider themselves as siblings, Volke and Illia. Now you know me. The plot and setting are secondary to the importance of character development. Characters are what drives the story forward, and I am very much ecstatic that the characters in this book were utterly superb.

Wanting to be an Arcanist (a person bonded with a magical creature; and in this case, a phoenix), Volke set out to compete
Sam Koumi
Jun 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Very good fantasy book

Shami Stovall starts off the series Frith Chronicles in an adventurous first part with the book Knightmare Archanist.

The story takes place around the young Volke (whose name I'm still unsure about whether it should be pronounced with a German V or not…) who dreams of becoming an Archanist, or, as most other fantasy stories call them: wizards with familiars. Volke stumbles on a lot of hindrances, but overcomes them all in the end, even with some… unconventional teachers and
Nay Denise
Jun 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Received a copy from the author for review.

This book was far more interested than I thought it would be. Shami created such a beautiful world and magic system. I was able to fall directly into the story and characters without confusion. I found that I enjoyed every character that played a role in the story. The premise itself was amazing as well.

Volke is a gravedigger and the son of a thief and murder. Life has been set for him and he is hated by the townspeople. Everyone expects him to be a cri
Jun 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shami Stovall delivers a world full of magic, adventure, friendship, secrets and lots of action. Everything is taking place into a well-crafted setting that you can easily visualize, due to the intricate details the writer is offering. The characters have distinctive personalities and while their utter goal is to attain the magic of their world, their motives differ from one another.

Our story follows Volke, a fifteen-year-old boy, who, despite his poor upbringing, is dedicated to becoming an arc
Jun 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley, ya
YA fantasy with a fresh premise - at least, fresh to me: people bond to any of a wide variety of mystical creatures and become arcanists, their powers differing based on the creature they are bonded to. Also, there's a magical plague which drives the creatures mad and corrupts the humans who are bonded to them, and pirates are deliberately spreading it as a terror tactic (and because it can make their creatures' magic more powerful).

It's a premise that's well thought through and well sustained.
Jul 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
• Title: Knightmare Arcanist
• Author: Shami Stovall
• Series: Frith Chronicles Book 1
• Pages: 338
• Genre: Fantasy YA/Middle-grade
• Rating Out of 5 Stars: 4

My Thoughts:
A fun new fantasy world full of magic, mayhem, betrayal and hope. If you enjoy the tales of Percy Jackson, Harry Potter, How to Train Your Dragon with the sass and whimsy of Studio Ghibli and Terry Pratchett’s Discworld then put this title on your radar.
We start in an island city with a young man by the name of Volke. Cond
Jul 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book. As someone with a slight obsession with phoenixes (my son's name is even Phoenix), the moment I laid eyes on this cover and read the synopsis, I was hooked. I knew I had to read this story. And I was definitely not disappointed.

First off, the cover is gorgeous. It's absolutely stunning, and I love it so much.

Second, I really felt a connection with Volke. He's considered worthless on his home island because he's a lowly gravedigger. And the only reason he's stuck wit
Jun 11, 2019 rated it liked it
Rating: 3.5 stars

Shami Stovall's Knightmare Arcanist, the first book in her Frith Chronicles series, turned out to be pretty fun and action-packed read. However, it did have some weak points that detracted from the overall reading experience for me. This book follows Volke Savan, an apprentice gravedigger on a tiny and remote island who's dream is to become an arcanist and finally leave his island. To become an arcanist and wield magic, one must first bond with an eldrin (a term for any time of
Megan Forrest
Jul 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Knightmare Arcanist, the first in the Frith Chronicles, introduces us to Volke, an orphaned gravedigger apprentice who wants to be a hero, just like in the stories he reads about the famous arcanist Gregory Ruma. Disadvantaged and reviled because of his parentage, he and his 'sister' apprentice Illia, take an unconventional approach to making sure they can become arcanists and are given the chance to train with the masters. On the way, they meet their heroes and unlikely heroes as well as de ...more
Lynn Reynolds
Rating: 4.5 Stars

Volke Savan thinks he knows what he wants. The sad part is that he has so much going against him. Our author shows that there is a fine line between our reality and fantasy. She puts in things we may see in our every day life but sets them into a place that doesn’t exist. But even in a world that can in no way actually exist, good and evil are still a possibility.

One thing about fantasy is that it’s a world of possibilities and total imagination. Sometimes what we see only hides
Kya Young
Jun 10, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019, arc
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest reveiw.

Okay, so normally when people don't like a book, it's usually how the book is written. I think this case is switched. I think since I expanded my reading variety I have become more picky in what I read. Especially in the YA/Independant reader category. So I believe this book is not for the newer version of Reader Kya, but would be great for old Reader Kya.
Anyway, here are my thoughts.

First off, the idea behind this and what the boo
Kelly (Simply Kelina) C.
Fantasy is hit of miss for me as it is not my go to genre. This sounded really good though so I wanted to give it a try. I picked it up one night thinking I would most likely put it right back down. When the story starts in a cemetery with graves being dug, it caught my interest. I ended up reading over fifty pages right then and there.

Volke is 15 years old. This really reminded me of a middle grade story. I enjoyed the writing as it was very engaging. However; I found myself losing once the tr
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RABT Book Tours: Knightmare Arcanist by Shami Stoval; 1 2 Jul 02, 2019 10:57AM  
RABT Book Tours: Knightmare Arcanist by Shami Stovall 1 3 Jun 11, 2019 04:54AM  
Shami Stovall relies on her BA in History and Juris Doctorate to make her living as an author and history professor in the central valley of California. She writes in a wide range of fiction, from crime thrills to fantasy to science-fiction. Stovall loves reading, playing video games, entertaining others with stories, and writing about herself in the third person.