Review with Spoiler Alert: Storm & Shield by J. D. Evans

Storm & Shield by J. D. Evans

Jen reviews Storm & Shield, the second book in J. D. Evans‘ Fantasy Romance series, Mages of the Wheel. Book 1, Reign & Ruin was an SPFBO 7 finalist.

About the Book
Series: Mages of the Wheel #2
Genre: Fantasy/romance
Publisher: Self-Published
Date of Publishing: February 20, 2020
Trigger Warnings: violence/death
Page count: 422
Book Blurb
Storm & Shield by J. D. Evans

“All you see is that I run. Why haven’t you realized I always come back?”

She is lightning and storm. A spy, driven out of her home by a tyrant ruler. He is granite and earth. A guard, ordered to keep her contained.

To protect herself and her family, she’s learned to go unnoticed, unseen. Suddenly a refugee in a land that once was enemy and now must be home, she isn’t certain where she belongs, or what her duty is beyond her family. She can’t protect them alone this time, but the only man who can help her is the only one she cannot ask.

He’s sworn his loyalty to the Sultana since she lifted him out of the gutter that made him. The arrival of a foreign spy loyal to the new prince makes him question himself and his orders, and his mistakes threaten the life of the ruler he swore to serve.

War will force choices of them both. She—to remain a spy, or stand and lend her powerful, untamed magic to the Sultana of Tamar. He—to remain a loyal, unquestioning guard, or learn to trust his instincts, and his heart.

They are magic in opposition, earth and sky, steady and mutable. One immovable as stone, the other fast as the wind. Balance, sometimes, is chaos.

He needed the storm and wildness of her, he needed the way she broke him apart.

Quote of the Book
Quote Background

“She couldn’t stand for the First House—her power was just another blade she hid, only she had far less precision with it than her swords and knives. She’d spent a lifetime hiding herself from a mad prince. All that time she’d lost to train her power. It was too late.”

Song of the Book

Invincible by David Archuleta


I picked this up a couple of years ago and had actually started it but other commitments had me putting it aside for a while…. a while meaning, a year or so. D:

I read and loved the first book in this series (Reign & Ruin) for SPFBO, it’s such a neat world and the characters were great. Storm & Shield reads a bit more to the romancy-side than Reign & Ruin did to me, but that’s probably because a lot of the worldbuilding is out of the way now, and we can concentrate on characters.

So, if you’re reading this book, you know about Naime’s goal of returning balance to their countries using the Charras (the strongest of the mages) to stand the Wheel.


Aysel, our main lady is a first house air mage from Sarkam. Like Makram (from the first book) she has always had to hide her magic or play down her strengths because of their country’s hatred toward mages. Her family is trained as spies and have come as refugees to Sarkhan since their support of Makhram has forced them from their country. (If I remember right, we met her in the first book when Naime and Makram stayed with her family.)

Commander Bashir – our male lead, is strong in the earth magic. He is a trusted, unshakeable leader – or at least he was unshakeable until Aysel came and shook his foundations to the core.

The beginning between these two is rocky – between misunderstandings, and the fact that she gets under his skin every time they meet, he feels like he is being tricked by her constantly. And because of his high-ranking position, the mixed-up emotions he has where she is concerned have made it so he can’t even allow himself to trust her as much as his heart wants to.

I did enjoy this couple – they have a really fun first meeting between them when she steals her weapons back and he happens to be there. There were lots of great moments in between, but they didn’t click with me quite as much as Naime and Makram did, for whatever reason. But that’s how it goes sometimes… some couples click more with certain people.

The important thing is that there is still enough of everything going on here, that I would continue the series in a heartbeat. The writing is great, the world, and all the ideas behind it are really neat. And I enjoy the characters. I do think my favourite this time around (outside of the main two) had to be Aysel’s brother, Mathei. He’s a smart-ass and I love that Chandler kind of personality, and he and Aysel’s relationship was filled with obvious sibling affection.


The magic in this series is so cool and still one of my favourite parts of this story. As an air mage she can do things like hide herself from others (from memory and notice) and use the wind in a variety of ways in battle and he as an earth mage can move the ground. Bring it up like a wall, sink it, etc. The battle scenes between these two were incredibly fun and creative with the many uses of their magic.

There were enough little tidbits about the surrounding countries, like the blight that is affecting the vegetation, etc. to make me want to come back and see how these little mysteries unfold. And of course, to see our next Charra added to the Wheel.

This series is shaping up to be something great and I am really looking forward to continuing.

Our Judgement
Let Their Deeds Be Noted - 4 Crowns

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