Roar – Cora Cormack (Review & Giveaway)

Title: Roar (Stormheart #1)
Author: Cora Cormack
Publisher: Tor Teen, 2017 (June 13)
Genre: YA Fantasy

**I received a copy of this book free from the author in exchange for an honest review**

This review can be found on my BlogTeacherofYA’s Tumblr, or my Goodreads page

My Review:

First off, I want to say thank you to Cora for making me a member of her street team for ROAR! It has and still is an amazing experience. We had fun being “Stormlings” and I was on my own mini-team, the “Snowstormlings,” which had great members who worked their butts off helping promote this amazing book.

I wanted to get this posted yesterday (as well as a BookCon recap in which I tell all about meeting Cora in person), but my internet has been wonky. On top of that, I’ve been invited to attend ALA, which I was definitely not expecting, and though funds are extremely tight from the NY trip, I have a great couple of friends who really want me to go. So not only have I been unpacking still, getting reviews written, and trying to balance life back in “non-book world,” I’m venturing off again next week!

Anyway, let’s talk about Roar, the book that if you haven’t heard of yet means you live under a rock.


On the Team, I won a Canvas Print of this scene! I love it!

Probably one of my favorite covers of all time. And I’m not just saying that. I may be a little biased, but I think it’s stunning.

There have been amazing graphics too, and I’m so jealous of some of my fellow Stormlings’ abilities with creative stuff.

Anyway, let us dive in to the amazing book, shall we? I’ve missed writing reviews for you guys! (You know I’m not a blurb person and that I prefer to do my own recaps…so here I go!)

Aurora Pavan comes from a prominent Stormling family: Stormlings have the ability to control storms and as storms are sentient, they have hearts. Most members have an affinity from birth: Aurora’s mother has an affinity for skyfire, and as the only living heir, Aurora is rumored to be quite powerful. As she readies herself for a wedding to Prince Cassius, she hopes to join the two royal lines before the storm season hits.

Because Aurora is hiding a deep secret: she has no magic.

She needs a good marriage to ensure someone can help control the dangerous storms that ravage the lands of Caelira. And Cassius is quite capable. And handsome, and charming. And he seems to want Aurora very much.

When Aurora overhears Cassius discuss how easy Aurora is to manipulate, she knows Cassius is up to no good. Though she must marry him to protect her secret and the lands, as well as the throne, she follows him one night to a black market filled with illegal magic. Bottled storms, stormhearts, and magic are all on display in a secret world Aurora never knew existed.

When she runs into a group of Stormhunters and learns that not only Stormlings have the ability to calm the skies, Aurora realizes she has an out: if she was not born with magic, she can steal it for herself and come back to claim the throne without having to marry.

Locke, one of the Stormhunters Aurora meets, sees the fear in her eyes. He knows she is running…he does not know why, but he can sense the pretty girl is in trouble. When he asks her name, all Aurora can get out is “Roar.” He is drawn to the little frightened spitfire of a girl:

Her tone was so fierce he nearly believed her, but he hadn’t read her wrong out there. He and fear were old friends. It had taken his parents’ place to raise him when they died, and he recognized the foul taint when he saw it. Even now, it lingered about her hunched shoulders and danced over her whitened fingers as they gripped her forearms . . . 

If he hunted down the demons of every wayward girl, he wouldn’t have time to hunt a single storm. But there was something about her. Her look of wonder at Etel’s booth had caught his eye. The defiant way she stood her ground and made him acknowledge her as more than a little girl . . . that was when she got her hooks in him. She might appear fragile, but there was fire in her. And he definitely knew she was no little girl. He could still remember the feel of her pressed up against his side as he led her through the market.

Well, why don’t I give you a little excerpt to whet your whistle…the book is too good and I’m sure you’re pretty darn curious at this point, right?

“This life is not glamorous,” Duke told her. “We travel constantly. We sleep on the ground most nights. When we’re not in danger from storms, we’re in danger in cities where we are considered criminals. This life is not for the faint of heart.”

“There are things I do not know, things I will have to learn. But I am capable. I am familiar with sacrifice. I know what it is to make hard choices.”

“Tell me you’re not considering this,” Locke said to Duke.

The old man was silent for a long moment, both Locke and Roar looking to him for support. Duke rubbed at his mustache, a habit of his when he was thinking deeply. “Let’s think about this, Locke. She’s smart. And determined.”

“She’s a child.”

Roar’s shoulders hunched in Locke’s peripheral vision, and he swallowed back the guilt. He could apologize later. For now, it was imperative that he won this argument.

You were a child when I brought you into the fold,” Duke said. “She’s a young woman with a good head on her shoulders. And if this is what she wants, I’m inclined to at least hear her out.”

Just like that, Roar’s shoulders straightened, and Locke turned to watch a devastating smile bloom across her mouth. His weakness when it came to her only made him more cross.

“What skills do you have?” he snapped at Roar.


“Yes, skills. What can you do? Or do you just plan to tag along for the ride?”

A flush spread over her cheeks, and her voice was tentative when she answered, “I’m good on a horse. Very good.”

Where in the world would she have learned to ride? He quickly hardened his expression. “Horses are fine for travel, but they don’t do well in storms. They, unlike you, have good survival instincts.”

As soon as the words were out of his mouth, Locke could have sworn he felt an updraft—the first sign that bad weather could occur—and he knew that this time he had pushed too far.

Roar marched toward him, spearing a finger into his chest and said, “I can read and write. I can speak Taraanese, Finlaghi, and Odilarian. I can read maps. I know enough about grassland vegetation and wildlife to survive without a market to buy food and drink. I’m good with knives and a bow. I learn quickly, and I’m not afraid of hard work. And I’ve spent my entire life reading as much about storms as I could get my hands on.” For a moment, her voice cracked under the weight of her anger, but she took a huffing breath and continued: “I’m good with numbers. It’s been a while, but I think I can probably still draw the constellations from memory, which should make me decent at navigation. I can—“

“Enough.” Locke’s voice came out in a deep rasp. He captured her long, delicate finger in his fist before she could continue poking him. He felt short of breath at the sight of her—livid and lovely. “Enough.”

The old Locke might have kept arguing, and Roar would have met him toe-to-toe. But if becoming a storm hunter had taught him anything, it was that fighting head-on wasn’t always the way to win. Sometimes strategy was required. He met Duke’s eyes over her shoulder, and if he had thought Roar looked smug before, she had nothing on his mentor. The man raised his eyebrows in a challenge and asked, “You?”

He hated the idea of bringing someone into this dangerous life, but if it was going to happen regardless, he sure as hell wouldn’t hand her safety over to anyone else, not even Ransom. And at the very least, it would give him the opportunity to change her mind. He gritted his teeth and nodded his acceptance.

I know, good, right? And the writing is just amazing, poetic prose. Too many good quotes that I highlighted as I read.

Is It Classroom-Appropriate?

I hate doing this segment when I love a book but know it’s just not right for the classroom. The novel isn’t dirty, there’s not a lot of cussing, drug use, etc. However, besides the exemplification of perfect prose, there’s really no educational value to the story.  The magic system is interesting, the world building is right on, and there’s an omniscient narrator (not my fave choice for POV but whatev). It’s a wonderful read. But I just can’t see any classroom uses for Roar.

I do think it’s a good book to keep on the shelf in a classroom library: fans of epic/high fantasy will love the intricate story, and it reminds me of The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson. There’s a heavy focus on romance (which you know I don’t mind), and it’s definitely a page-turner…but I just can’t see a lesson plan utilizing it.

So I think unless you’re using it for a college writing example, I would leave it for outside reading. I give Roar ★★☆☆☆ for classroom use:

That’s no reflection on the story, as you know.

Age Range

So there’s no Lexile score for Roar. I don’t think it’s necessarily inappropriate for younger readers because though it is steamy, nothing torrid happens…but I wouldn’t also give it to a MG reader. I would probably stick with teen readers only for this novel: there is a lot of heat between the characters, and I definitely felt it! Whew! Cora knows how to write a scene!

Definitely makes your heart race, and I love that about Roar. But I would keep the kiddies away and stick with about 15 and up, mainly for those scenes. If intense intimacy without sex scenes doesn’t bother you, then 13 and up is as low as I would go comfortably. Remember, this is my opinion only. I am also overcatious.

End Result:

I cannot wait for the next book. This book ends with a cliffhanger but not one that will make you pull your hair out waiting. I can’t stand those. I am eager to read Cora’s sequel, and I’m sure you will too if you read Roar. Luckily, you won’t go insane waiting until the next book because it ended in a comfortable spot for me. I hope I get to be on the next street team for the next book: working with Tor Teen and Cora rocked! I’ll have to take a pic of my Instax pic she signed of the two of us at BookCon (and that post will be coming shortly and I apologize for the delay sincerely!).

I can honestly and comfortably give Roar ★★★★★. Which in my blogger rating system means that Cora gets some Rainbow Brite love!

Let me leave you with some info about Cora and some links!

Oh, and did someone say GIVEAWAY???

ROAR Swag Pack and $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card for 1 Winner! YAY!!

Rafflecopter Giveaway

Cora Carmack is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author. Since she was a teenager, her favorite genre to read has been fantasy, and now she’s thrilled to bring her usual compelling characters and swoon-worthy romance into worlds of magic and intrigue with her debut YA fantasy, Roar. Her previous adult romance titles include the Losing It, Rusk University, and Muse series. Her books have been translated into more than a dozen languages around the world. Cora splits her time between Austin, TX and New York City, and on any given day you might find her typing away at her computer, flying to various cities around the world, or just watching Netflix with her kitty Katniss. But she can always be found on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and her website

P. S. I’ll be doing a giveaway, a BookCon recap, anthoer giveaway, and two more good reviews shortly, so STAY TUNED, blogger bunnies! 😘❤️

89 thoughts on “Roar – Cora Cormack (Review & Giveaway)

    1. Isn’t it wonderful? I was so worried I wasn’t going to like it after being on the Street Team, but it was just awesome. I definitely wouldn’t mind a FC next to my little ARC, and I love my canvas print from the contests…I think this cover is one of my all-time faves! 😍❤️
      I’m glad you liked it, too! ☺️

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Ooh, fingers crosssed for you too! I know one theme was tempests in one sub box and that would make sense…it’s one of my favorites and I never thought I could love a book so much after all the hype, but I do! I really do! 😍

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh good! It’s totally worth trying to win.
      I’m really happy being on the Street Team, because I won a Wooden Map AND a canvas print of the cover. There’s another giveaway on Instagram where every day you do a different pic and you can win! So you might want to check that out too!

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Good! I hope you win!
      I am very fortunate that now I have a nice library for the classroom. I didn’t have much before and now there’s a lot to choose from! And it is really wonderful how people offer so much!!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Great review! You have me itching to grab a copy and dive in straight away! I’ve never read any books by this author before but this sounds really good and it’s definitely on my TBR list now 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I absolutely loved this book! And the finished copy is so freaking gorgeous, I just can’t even stop looking at it when I’m at home. So glad you had a great experience being on the street team! Now to anxiously await the second book 😲

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know…I hope she invites me back. I didn’t get to do a lot of the challenges because of the Cons but I think Cora is amazing and I think her writing is brilliant.
      There’s a fun thing on Instagram too for celebrating 7 days of the release if you want to participate…I think there’s a prize at the end?
      I really would love a FC too…I’m happy to have an ARC but the book is so gorgeous. So so gorgeous. 😍😍😍

      Liked by 1 person

      1. All of her stuff is new to me but since I don’t read contemporaries I may not dive into her other stuff but I can’t wait for her to write more YA fantasy!
        I may be too late for that. I didn’t even get to post on my Instagram today because I was late from work and missed out on sunlight 😞 I saw that she has some great swag that people can win! Oh my gosh you should! Amazon had it for a pretty good price when I pre-ordered. Buuuut keep an eye out on my bookstagram page. I’m most likely going to give one away 😉

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Ooh! I’m there! I’m going to haunt it! 😂
      I thought she was a debut author until I found out about her contemporary stuff: I’m surprised she didn’t take a pen name bc she does have a very loyal contemporary following.
      But I will be signing up for the next one!!


  3. Oh great review for this book Stephanie. 😀 Roar is on my to-read list (I have a sneaking suspicion it’s the book included in the June Fairy Loot box) and now after reading your review I can’t wait to get started on it myself. It’s a shame it’s not suitable for classroom use but seeing your five star rating overall ensures me I’ll probably love this book as much as you have! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh it’s wonderful! I seriously think you’ll love it. Yeah, they can’t all be classroom books but at least it’s good reading material!!
      Let me know if you get it in the box! I’m thinking that’s the one too but you never know!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. After reading your review I think so too, as long as they’re all good books that’s the main thing isn’t it?
        I’ll be posting the June box in my monthly recap so you can see what I get then, I’ll let you know if my book guess was correct before then of course. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I freaking loved this book! I’m so glad to hear that you loved it! I loved Roar, Locke, Cassius and Nova! Everything about this book is gorgeous! Have you seen its book trailer? It’s quiet amazing! I enjoyed Roar and Locke in this book but I hope there’s more Cassius and Nova in the next book. Great Review! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I really want to read that after meeting her and hearing about it but I have so many review titles to read still…I do miss reading for pleasure though I’d rather have the review copies than not. It just can be hard sometimes…I’m sure you know with your successful site!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. TheCleverReader

        Krysti did much more of the reading and blog posting. Now that I’ve got my own blog I’m not quite there yet. I’m still in week one! I haven’t put up a review yet either but I’m planning on doing that soon!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Pingback: The Unique Blogger Award – Darque Dreamer Reads

    1. Yeah I’m thinking you should!
      It’s awesome, Courtney, truly. I don’t try to give five stars to every book, and it’s going on my favorites shelf on Goodreads. Defintely happy with this one and I’m glad bc I’m on the street team and it would’ve been a nightmare to dislike my promoted book!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Kourtni @ Kourtni Reads

        Hahaha, that’s why I’m scared to join street teams. I’m always so nervous that I’ll dislike it and will be stuck promoting a book I didn’t even like reading 😛

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! ☺️
      I try to be…it takes me awhile to write them but I want you guys to know how I felt about it. Though it may not be useful for a classroom environment, I still would hand it to a young reader and I did refer it to a shopper in the bookstore, and they took it home!


    1. I’m so glad you know what I’m talking about with the audience. And I’m also glad you’re loving this book!
      The ALA AND BookCon trips were both pretty spontaneous: I did crowdfunding for BookCon and I made it, and my friend Justin invited to take me to ALA with whatever money I had, and he would cover eveyyting else…so I am VERY lucky and very thankful. I still need to do my BookCon post, which I plan to do this weekend, and then I am trying to do one or two more reviews before I leave Wed. I did get a great haul and had a wonderful time, and now I get to do it again. This means when I plan for next year, hopefully it will go a lot smoother…and maybe the next event we can meet up! ☺️😉


    1. Thank you! I don’t get time to do many but I love being tagged! I’ll go check it out!
      I hope you get to read this one: it’s so rare when a cover matches the beauty on the inside and I really enjoyed this one. I hope you do, too! 😍🤞

      Liked by 1 person

  6. OMG! I NEED THIS ASAP! This is her first YA Fantasy, right? ARGH. She’s darn good, I think. I am adding this on my priority right now. Thanks for this wonderful review and for the excerpt!


    1. You’re welcome! You should enter the giveaway!
      It’s a great book and you’re right, this is her first fantasy. And for her first, she did an AMZING job! I hope you like it!


  7. Pingback: Roar | pooled ink

  8. Oh my gosh. Say no more, I’m in I know my reply is a little bit tooo late but even is I don’t get the giveaway I would definitely stalk amazon for this amazing book. Gosh, the title totally does it for me, let’s not even talk about the cover. This book is lit. Thanks for bringing it to my knowledge I sure would love to check it out.

    Liked by 1 person

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