The Rise of the Iliri: Books 1-3 by Auryn Hadley – A Book Review

Posted September 6, 2020 by Booksandblurbs in Epic, Fantasy, Reverse Harem, Reviews, Sci-Fi / 1 Comment

Rise of The Iliri: Book 1-3 (Box Set) by Auryn Hadley - A Book Review #EpicFantasy #SlowBurn #RH #SciFi #5Stars #BoxSet #KindleUnlimited #KU #Omnibus

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The Rise of the Iliri: Books 1-3

by Auryn Hadley
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Epic Fantasy, Slow Burn RH
Available on Kindle and Kindle Unlimited

Some 5 Star books deserve a republish on this review blog – and Rise of the Iliri fits that profile in every single way. I am on my third re-read of the series… if you haven’t dived in yet, why? This review was first published in October 2019.

Down and Dirty

This is an amazing series that sucks you in from the first chapter. Extensive, detailed and emotionally complex, the sci-fi/fantasy adventure begins with this intensive box set. Free on Kindle Unlimited.

What is it about?

(Blurb from GoodReads)

One part reverse harem sci fi fantasy, one part irresistible paranormal romance, the Rise of the Iliri series is an epic tale of one extraordinary woman’s quest for justice, hope, and love. In an exotic and dangerous post-apocalyptic world, a nation of terrorists under the thumb of an evil Emperor sets out to systematically destroy every race but their own. And they’re just about to succeed.

Author Auryn Hadley deftly blends heart-stopping epic adventure with the age-old struggle between good and evil, hatred and love—all through the lens of an intriguing female lead, the likes of which the fantasy genre hasn’t yet seen.

The Rise of the Iliri: Books 1-3 (Box Set) includes:

BloodLust – Book 1
Instinctual – Book 2
Defiance – Book 3

First up…

I sometimes reread books, especially if there is a significant timeframe between releases. I like to refresh myself. Since the final books in this expansive set have hit my kindle, I opted to dive back into the beginning and start this journey all over in prep for the glory I know Book 10 & 11 will hold. 30hrs and a bazillion cups of coffee later and I am on book 8…. but I realized I never gave this series its true diligence on the blog. It hit my “Top 10 List” for 2018… but it deserves more than that.

As I go through this series, yet again, I will finally post those reviews it begs for. Be warned, the next few days are going to be all about Auryn Hadley and her amazing Iliri.

Thoughts on The Rise of the Iliri: Books 1-3

This collection encompasses the first 3 novels in the expansive ‘Rise of the Iliri’ series – and makes slipping from one book to the next much easier, an ease you’ll need… because once you start this series, you will NOT stop.

While this collection is tagged as a RH, I would steer clear if that is your only goal. It DOES contain sex and at least 2 men (for now) (and separately, not a MFM or MMF)- but that is NOT what this book is about. No, this is a sprawling epic, rich with fantasy and scientific elements, set on a world with races and people you should meet. The RH factor comes into play with Iliri culture, but it is so much more than that and reaches back to the very beginnings of their kind.

Fascinating, all encompassing and fervently unique, ‘The Rise of the Iliri’ Box Set #1 is a collection you will definitely be reading again.


  • Incredibly well written.
  • Sweeping in scope and detail.
  • A fantasy lover’s dream.
  • The people are compelling and solid, crafted to become real.
  • There is a map included in the front of the book, use it.
  • Parallels to our own histories, both the light and darker parts, can be seen.


  • Often the details are overwhelming, bogging the narrative.
  • A few times, things seemed to be assumed by the characters which are not explained to the reader, though later it may become clear – not always.
  • Minor editing errors – these blips do not detract from the flow.
  • POV switches happen smoothly, though not always with warning or with consistency. One moment you will be in Sal’s head, then the net paragraph, you stumble into Blaec’s… then back again. Strangely, this is not jarring, though it is notable.


Third Person, Multiple POV

Ending Type

Each are episodic and pseudo cliffhanger


R – while there are explicit scenes and fervent violence, the tone and expression of the intimacy does not lean towards NC-17.

Romantic Dynamic

MMF (for this set). Please note, this is a slow-burn harem builder.

Age Range


Final Verdict for The Rise of The Iliri: Books 1-3

5 out of 5 Stars

The overall breadth and entertainment value of this epic collection make it a solid 5 Star read. Completely engrossing and wonderfully detailed, The Rise of The Iliri: Books 1-3 will stay with you long after you finally close the book. Free on KU!

Published May 12th, 2017
1315 Pages

If you enjoyed this review, please consider checking out a few of my other articles.


Your Turn

Have you read this? What are your thoughts? What about other books by the incredibly talented Auryn Hadley? Leave a comment, I would LOVE to chat!!


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