Upheaval by Auryn Hadley – A Book Review

Posted November 1, 2019 by Booksandblurbs in Epic, Fantasy, Reverse Harem, Reviews, Sci-Fi / 3 Comments

Upheaval (Rise of the Iliri - Book 8) by Auryn Hadley - A Book Review #BookReview #SciFi #EpicFantasy #SlowBurn #RH #5Stars #KindleUnlimited #KU #SeriesComplete

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(Rise of the Iliri – Book 8)

by Auryn Hadley
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Slow Burn Epic Fantasy / Sci-Fi RH
Available on Kindle and Kindle Unlimited

Down and Dirty

Things are REALLY starting to happen in Book 8, and you want to be along for the ride. Free on Kindle Unlimited.

What is it about?

(Blurb from GoodReads)


The evil Emperor is in our heroine’s sights—all she needs now is a military and cultural miracle.

It’s the dead of winter, and the Terrans hold the line as the Conglomeration is holed-up in a makeshift camp, prickly with nervous excitement, preparing for a massive offensive into wealthy Merriton—the gaudy Conglomerate city in which Sal was enslaved as a child. But the next battle will have to wait. Sometimes, things even more personal than war get in the way—like hormones.

Unimaginably powerful Salryc Luxx, Kaisae of all Iliri and de facto Queen of the Conglomerate forces, is finally brought to her knees—by ovulation. So is Shade, her partbred iliri warrior-sister. To avoid hormonal confusion, and, well, the entire Black Blades from instinctively tearing each other and all other male allies apart with protective rage and sexual prowess, all parties are separated—iliri from humans, men from women, Sal from her pack—stuck in a holding pattern while the battle lines move closer. And nobody is more annoyed by being cooped up with nothing to do than Sal.

When the women finally free themselves from self-imposed quarantine (and reforge their sexual bonds with their mates), it’s back to work. The allies continue to collaborate, this time enacting a meticulously-laid plan to quietly infiltrate Terric’s diamond of a city as spies. Part of the fun in this volume is the detailed unfolding of the riveting military plot, which has all the thrills of a Russian spy novel.

Note from the Author

Like all of the Rise of the Iliri novels, this epic fantasy story focuses on loving relationships, platonic and romantic, with a steamy reverse harem theme. Sal’s erotic love scenes with her three male mates are explicit and almost unbearably titillating, although not for all readers—especially those under eighteen.

Thoughts on Upheaval

Of all the books in this series so far, I may like this one the best – aside from Book 1, of course. Sal and her army are heading back to the beginning, back to Merriton, where she was raised as a slave… a ‘gymnast’ for the rich and powerful. Not only does she have to face her past, she also has to face her future, and learn to let go of some of her control and trust in those that surround her.

It’s heart wrenching, blunt and emotionally brutal – and like all stories that feature the hero’s journey, falling into these depths is vital to growth and continuation. The Allied armies suffer their worst defeat yet, while somehow, the individuals achieve their greatest personal achievements.

That, more than anything, is beautiful. Oh, and the ovulation part right in the beginning is just plain fun!

Favorite Lines

Every girl wants to be put on a pedestal. Very few realize how terrifying it is trying to balance at the top. (1%)
“Ayati,” Kolt breathed. “When you drop a stone, it will fall. Water will be wet. Fire will be hot. Our lives will matter.” (37%)


  • Well Written.
  • The details stay consistent.
  • The Ilirian language is growing. Bit hard to keep track of, but it’s fun to try.
  • Details of Blaec are slowly trickling in, setting the stage for Fate’s play.
  • The romance! RH sometimes has a hard time delving deep into the emotional aspect, offering each male in a harem their due… Hadley handles that beautifully here, all without losing any of the previous love and attention shown to original members of the mate group.
  • Really is following the Hero’s Journey.
  • Ran just became one of my favorite characters. I loved him before, now, he’s prime.


  • POV switches happen without warning, but still somehow appears smooth.


Third Person, Multiple POV

Ending Type



R to NC-17

Romantic Dynamic


Character Age Range


Final Verdict on Upheaval

5 out of 5 Stars

Maybe I just love Epic Fantasy, or perhaps I’m just a sucker for Auryn Hadley‘s writing… but I adore this series and strongly recommend it to just about anyone. From Game of Thrones fans to The Dragon Rider’s of Pern, if complicated plots and extensive world building gets your attention, then this series, and this book, deserves your time. Free on KU!

Published October 12th, 2018
476 Pages

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


Your Turn

What are you reading today? Have you dived into this series yet? How about other books by Auryn Hadley? Do you have a favorite? Leave a comment, I would love to chat!


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3 responses to “Upheaval by Auryn Hadley – A Book Review

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