Review posted on Dark Faerie Tales.Andrea Cremer knows how to create a world filled with amazement and wonder. One of the reasons why I love her work is mostly due to the lore and culture of her worlds. They are so detailed and realistic, enough so that I always find myself getting lost in them. A favorite series of mine is the Nightshade Prequel. Rise is the second and final book in the prequel series, and it is fantastic.In an emotional journey, Rise begins shortly after the end of Rift. Ember and Barrow have left Tearmunn after the death of Sorcha. Eira has solidified her alliance with Bosque Mar and have taken actions to rising in power. Alistair is a lover scorn over Ember’s abandonment and is torn between protecting her and accepting his place in Eira and Bosque Mar’s big plan. Nether world evils follow Ember to the ends of the world, thwarting her escape. It results in more problems than one can handle, and she must find a way to save everyone she loves. But will it mean sacrificing Ember or just her dreams?Ember has grown so much in Rise. She is not the young woman whose father paid to enter Tearmunn. She is no longer the young and wild girl who was headstrong without faults. Now, Ember has responsibilities and desires, loyalty and courage. Ember has faced danger and saved loved ones, many times, and she knows what pain is, emotionally and physically. I enjoyed Ember very much, and I appreciated where Cremer has taken her as a character. I like how she has realistic human feelings, despite the time period that she lives in. They were real and easy to relate to, and I found myself cheering for her the entire way.Rise brings back many characters, ones that we love and others that we love to hate. There is Barrow, the dark and broody knight that has been quickly won over by Ember. He shows a different side of himself in Rise, and I didn’t think I could love him any more than I already do. Alistair also shows a different side of himself, and he becomes more involved in the storyline which makes it easy to start piecing together this world and that of the Nightshade series. There are also many other characters that evolve to the situations at hand, and it’s amazing how much they have changed to the twists. Each one individually different and interesting to read.Rise is an amazing follow up to Rift. The characters have a way about them, taking a life of their own through the words on the page. It’s bittersweet to know that this is the end of the prequel series, having only two books to know about, but Cremer also finished the story with providing answers and links to the present day counterparts. Like I’ve said before, Cremer knows how to write a scene and her world-building skills are superb. It’s easy to get lost within the walls of Tearmunn or even outside of them, for I feel like I can take a breathe of air in what feels like a realistic world.Cremer knows how to take risks in a calculated way. She manages to write stories that are compelling to the reader’s senses and emotions, enough so that she’ll have you wanting more. Cremer talks about different layers of love as well as lust. She also weaves in messages of loyalty, beliefs, and the faith you need because you want to be a part of something big.Rise is a great way to start the new year. I highly urge you all to read Rise, and if you haven’t read the series, to also pick up Rift and the Nightshade trilogy.