Original ONGOING Adventure Fantasy Romance Sci-fi Anti-Hero Lead Female Lead GameLit Magic Male Lead Multiple Lead Characters Post Apocalyptic Strong Lead Supernatural
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  • Sexual Content

Ten years ago the angel Sammael appeared in a burst of light over the ocean, unleashing the godstorms and afflicting a minority of the population with elemental Warp sensitivities.

Now Piper Jones lives in squalor, bearing the mark of the Warped without any of the powers. A chance meeting brings her into contact with the enigmatic Malachai Beckett, a representative of the mysterious research facility known as the Ark. A liar by trade, he's fascinated by her generous spirit and sweet nature. As for Piper, she's attracted to him and everything he represents... but as for trusting him? That's a different matter.

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Author
Chrysoula Tzavelas

Chrysoula Tzavelas

Word Witch

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Ariana Vivoni
Overall

This is a long overdue review and I need to sincerely apologize to the author.

Now, let’s get down to business. First impression – you take “Neogenesis Evangelion”, mix it with “The Mortal Instruments” and cross it with “Alice in Wonderland” and you get the feeling of “Storm Oracle”. To be honest, I loved the premise! It has great potential and sooooooooooooo many cool points to explore. In addition, the author just electrifies you with the more… steamy scenes (wipes away nosebleed). The overall verdict – a good idea with the potential for greatness.

After praising it this much, you might wonder why have I given the work only 4 stars. I had 2 major beefs with it. I contacted the author a month ago with my concerns and was pleasantly surprized to see eagerness to improve the work. In the extended beef-section you can read my full complains stated at that time and compare them with the work’s current status.

  • It was at times very confusing. The author has since tried to amend this by providing a Prologue. In that regard, I believe that it is a MUST read to understand the nuances of the story. Bellow I have listed all my complains that I’ve shared with the author before this review, for those of you who want to dig deeper into the reason WHY I’m a bit dissatisfied.
 It is nice to have a mystery in the story that is revealed slowly. But this story has way too much of it to the point you don’t quite get what is going on. We get specific terminology thrown at us as readers without much of an explanation – warp, storm hounds, godstorms, void angels, incaranrium, wonderland. It gets problematic, at least for me. Ten chapters into the story and I still have no idea what the heck a godstorm is, or a storm hound; why are they so dangerous and how can one fight against them. You mention that people with warps can combat storm hounds, but then the whole thing about them being shunned by society seems illogical. If they have special abilities and can fight the monsters they should be revered almost like heroes. Feared – yes. But not so obviously shunned and forced into poverty. The hatred should be a bit more fleshed out and made clear so that we can relate to Piper’s situation.

 

As mentioned before, another problem for me are the godstorms. With so little explanation it takes away some of the urgency of the whole problem. And since they are somehow created by Samael, it diminishes the feel of dread that he is supposed to embody. Yes, he killed some fine people some years ago. And yes, he makes cloud-like monsters that can shoot lightning and leave some magic RPG-like drops when killed. But so what? Is the world going to end? If yes, why is that so?

 

Then we have the incarnarium part. If an incarnarium is a place connected to Wonderland where angels come to be and get incarnated, and Alice is the one controlling Wonderland, how are there more than one? And what exactly is the connection between the incarnated angels and Alice that they get scrapped the moment she throws a tantrum? Yes, Alice is a universal anchor, but still. The system seems highly inefficient in combat if every time Alice is unhappy their fighting power gets incapacitated. And if angels with other anchors like Anahel are more immune to the tantrums, how is it that only she reacts? Are all other bonded angels away? Because there is no other reason why no one besides Malachai storms out to intercept Samael. What about Dantalion? He is also one of the special exceptions, is he not? And again, why do we need the super ineffective super-weapon Ashmedai when one look from Malachai is enough to make the big bad guy stop in his tracks? I know that Malachai is very, very, very special, but at this point it seems illogical to me.

 

I believe that we as readers need a bit more firmness and cleared terminology about the world, its dangers and limitations. Piper, as the main character and a person new to this world, is the ideal guide that can provide this crucial information by actively interacting with the rest of the cast. But here we come to the second large problem

 

  • Some protagonists were acting illogically or were outright waste of paper and cool concept (I’m looking at you, Sajan!). Indeed, one might say that I’m too nit-picky by attacking the side characters, but our dear Piper had me furrow my brow a couple of times too many. For the ones that like to read the long rant version, klick below.
Piper and some other characters behave extremely illogically. I understand that Piper is confused and frightened, but still… I mean, she has either the emotional range of a robot or gets overly emotional over nothing. Let me explain. In the beginning, she repeatedly states how little she trusts Malachai and everyone around her in general. But then she jumps on an unidentified plain with him. Alright, we can say that she is impulsive and a bit of an adventurer. But then she shows almost no reaction to the fact that she is surrounded by angels – the beings she supposedly hates. Good, we can say that Piper is tough and composed, understanding that there are good and bad angels... Unfortunately, the moment she is up to meet Alice, she starts suddenly to act uncertain like a frightened child (a condition she actually should have entered the moment it was clea that there are angels all around her that want to use her for some shady things!) nand then a single word from the Red Queen is regarded as super motivational praise (so easy to change the mood). Then Piper contemplates how bad and secretive everyone is and how surprisingly little she knows about everything! But did she bother to dig deeper and learn more about the Arc? The moment Sajan or Malachai say “we will discuss it another time” she simply agrees without protesting. This is stupid and a clear lack of self-preservation instinct! The fact that she contemplates in chapter 9 how many “wrong” decisions she has made up till bow does not improve the situation. The only decision she made was actually jumping on that plane. From then on, she has been going with the flow without even attempting to gather information and never even questioning what the heck is going on. Some angels want me to enter a fight with some other angels after one of their people lied to me and virtually kidnapped me? Alright, where do I sign in?! After all, we are all the best of buddies, despite the child in the cryo-pod in the basement that has been weaponized for some unknown reasons. (Sorry for the sarcasm, but I just couldn't help it here.) 

 

And then we have Sajan – the director of the Arc and a human making him the perfect one to explain everything to Piper. From the text I gather that he is most likely Anahel’s anchor (but this is not very clear). If that is the case, who can be better than him in explaining stuff about anchors, warps, angels, pulling swords out of living people, little comatose children that can create super-weapons by dreaming? But what does he do? He says Malachai should explain stuff, despite knowing how loose-lipped our dear playboy is. Why do we even need Sajan then? Is he just for decoration? And the whole super secret about Alice… who in their right mind wont carefully explain to the new girl what is expected of her and just throw her in in a sci-fi setting and expect everything to go well? I have a feeling that the whole staff of the Arc are some sort of sick pranksters that keep stuff secret only for the thrill of seeing Piper’s “first time ever reaction to human experimentation ad alternate reality”.

 

To emphasize again, the work is entertaining. And the author has shown willingness to improve. Still, adding the so much needed prologue does not make up for the fact that it would have been better for this information to be integrated in the main text. I understand that it is a lot of work. Yet, I also had to judge the overall quality of “Storm Oracle”. Therefore, I stay behind my 4 stars.

My suggestion to you, potential readers – go through the story and judge its merits from your own experience.

I wish the author the best of luck.

Dire Badger
Overall

Storm Oracle is a treat, and a thoroughly tasty one at that. It's impossible not to sympathize with Piper as she tries to find her place in a world twisted by godstorms, dangerous breaks in the fabric of reality. When the handsome Malachai helps her find shelter after her own good intentions leave her stranded, she takes his outstretched hand and his job offer despite the devil she sees under the charming smile. Her world will never be the same again, and even if Piper might regret it, the reader certainly won't.

Where do I even begin? The story is compelling, letting us discover the Ark and its Angels in tandem with Piper, and the colourful cast of characters that run it. Each is marvelously drawn, from Piper's eagerness to carve a place for herself despite the dangers of her new home, to Malachai's self-deceptions as what he suddenly wants clashes with what he always thought he knew about himself, to the Red Queen's cold efficiencies. Even the minor characters are memorable, from the antagonistic Sammael that still haunts Piper years after she watched him tear a hole in the world, to Dantalion's black fire and taciturn care, to the insecurity-riddled warmth of the Ark Administrator, Anahel. You really do get the feeling that these people have been through hell together, long before Piper showed up, and it subtly colors all their interactions.

If you haven't tried Storm Oracle yet, I'd recommend giving it a try now. It's full of what so much fantasy lacks these days - imagination. And all wrapped in a very readable story and likable characters.

Jenna
Overall
Style
Story
Grammar
Character

Storm Oracle is a roller-coaster ride through a world of virtualized angels and storm-harrowed humanity. Even the main character, Piper, finds the circumstances of her new job interview somewhat suspicious; as a reader, I was even more so; but frankly, neither of us had any idea. Like the works of Rachel Caine, which is probably Storm Oracle's closest print comparison, there's a hurricane of stuff here happening, built around a very human core. Features ample mysteries to explore; hopefully understated Alice in Wonderland references; what looks to be an interesting magitech system (not LitRPG); and various possessive angels/romantic interests of the teasing, self-centered, and work-focused varieties. (Hopefully the giant eye in the center of the storm is not a romantic interest, but if you swing that way I guess you can hope!)

Style: 5. Storm Oracle moves fast and never loses you. There's a solid balance of plot progression and small character moments.

Story: 4. It could probably be higher, but there isn't that much of it posted yet and it's hard to award 5 stars to what's just the beginning. Like, right now, it seems like some of the chapter 1-2 stuff is unnecessary, but maybe it'll come back into focus on chapter 60 or whatever and critique like that will be wrong?

Grammar: 5, perfect as far as I can tell.

Characters: 4.5, the core characters are strongly realized. The main romantic interest in particular, Malachai, is extremely memorable, but Piper and Ashmedai and Rain are all growing on me. Maybe even the giant eye in the storm.*

* platonically

Eteru
Overall
Style
Story
Grammar
Character

This story felt as if I've pulled it off the shelf from the YA section in the bookstore. That is the level of quality and air this work of literature carries. Right down to the description of sensual scenes we often seen from YA. But that doesn't mean this isn't original. Not at all. You can feel the passion the author put into her work. Creating a compelling enough world to make you yearn to learn more that it can carry you through the romantic elements of that's not your forte. Overall the story is a fun and worthwhile read!