I am super excited to help kick off the Dominion Blog Tour today! Dominion is the final book in The Enertia Trails series by J. Kowallis and it will be releasing later this week on May 19! I have a special excerpt and my 5 star review of Dominion to share with you today. But first let me tell you a little bit about this fantastic book…
WE ARE THE FIRST
WE ARE THE END
“I didn’t want to wake up. Sometimes I almost wished I hadn’t.”
With Reggie’s death, Nate and the others are forced to continue on in their attempt to defeat Roman with the help of The Rising—a rebellion movement thriving in the bowels of Public Two.
New faces and mysterious secrets—hidden technology, lies, and darkness—from within The Rising shake the balance of their trust.
When an unimaginable encounter infiltrates the rebellion, true identities are revealed and loyalties torn apart. In the end, there’s only one target that matters: Roman—and they’ll do anything to stop him from claiming dominion.
Sounds pretty awesome right?! Keep reading for a special excerpt from Dominion!
I growl in frustration and step back. “Dammit, Roy!”
“What? Tell me what you’re mad about.”
“I’m mad at you!”
“Pray, tell me why? What have I, a lowly bystander, done?” He folds his arms,
looking serious and smug all at the same time.
“It’s not even the same thing! Nate barely functions! I might be hurt, I might be
frustrated, and I may have lost people too, but I don’t have to get brain-dead- drunk in
order to deal with my pain!”
“You’re right, you just need to unleash your powers to communicate that. Did I ever
mention how much that hurt, by the way?” Roy rubs his chest, bringing up memories of
his charred skin and the red imprint of my face seared into his body.
I breathe deep and step back, remembering the exploding transport.
How dare he? I shake my head. It’s not the same. Even if it was, at least I can feel. At
least I don’t just try to pretend I’m fine. I am fine.
“Look, Rans . . .”
“You’ve said enough,” I whisper.
“No. I’m not trying to make you feel bad. But I am trying to get you to understand
where Nate’s coming from.” Roy drops his eyes and everything else he says seems to be
focused more on the floor than on me. I refuse to look at him any longer. I just want to
“I’ve had to ask myself what I would do if I were in his shoes.” I can’t see him, but I
can feel him turn his head to look at me. “What I would do if I lost you.”
My own gaze travels to the floor and I hold my breath.
“I don’t think I could handle it,” he says.
“Yes, you would.” Of course, he would. He’s like that. Yeah, he would probably beat
a few faces in, but I know in the end, he’d never self-destruct. He’s not wired like that
and never has been. Lobb made sure of that.
“Don’t tell me what I’d do,” he juvenilely responds. “You don’t know. Besides,
there’s a reason you two always,” he emphasizes always with a frustrated grumble,
“bicker like two PMSing chickens in a cockfight. You both have the same damn
stubbornness and piece-of- shit attitudes that make people want to hit you in the face with
a hammer. Look, I know you’re hurt.” Roy pauses and takes another step toward me,
taking a deep breath, his hands low on his hips. “I know what you’re going through.”
“No, you don’t.”
“You wanna bet? I hear you at night, you know.”
“At night.” His voice softens and he shakes his head. “You talk in your sleep now,
too. Maybe I’m rubbing off on you.”
His mirror-like eyes frown at me. Not with contempt or irritation, but soft, like he
feels bad for me. As if he understands. Mierda. How could he understand? I shift
uncomfortably. “No, I don’t.”
Roy smirks. “Yeah. You do.”
“No,” I bite back, “I don’t.”
“See?” Roy turns to pick up one of the knives on the table. “Right there.”
He spins around and throws it at the target across the room. Once again, he duplicates
himself and catches the sharpened end with the flat of his two palms at the other side of
“Right where? What are you talking about?”
“That attitude. It’s why I want to shove you into pig shit sometimes.”
His duplicate throws the knife back to him and I lash my arm out, sending a wave of
flames, engulfing the knife before it returns to its host. Roy ducks at the oncoming
glowing blade and it drives into the wall behind him. “Nice try,” he quips.
“If I were really trying, that knife would be lodged in your brain with flames searing
through your pathetic body.”
“Pathetic?” Roy reins his duplicate in and walks back to me. “You know, putting a pin
in the topic at hand, if I remember correctly, I got you to shiver quite a few times with
this ‘pathetic’ body of mine. And that was only last night.”
I fold my arms, my heart pounding heavier the closer he gets. His eyes narrow, his lip
curled in the corner. The pinprick mole that used to be just below his lip is gone now
because of the Nexis. Still, I can’t help but see it in my mind.
“Yeah. In disgust,” I spit out.
He reaches me and looks down. Then to my lips. I can’t help it. My own eyes travel
down to his sweat-drenched abdomen, the thin trail of hair that dips beneath his waistline,
across his broad chest, and back up to his face. How long has it been since I really kissed
him or let him touch me where injury, confusion, or jealousy wasn’t involved? In a
situation where I could just be with him simply because I love him?
His eyes lock mine and I can’t look away.
“Disgust, huh? Wanna say that again without checking out my kick-ass body?”
Now isn’t the time.
I purse my lips and stare into his eyes, my voice firm and resolute. “You make me
Roy draws in his bottom lip and licks it. “Uh, huh. See, that would be easier to
believe if your neckline wasn’t turning a passionate shade of scarlet and burning with
“Don’t, Roy. I can’t do this now.”
“You and I both know that’s a lie. You just enjoy being angry.” He shakes his head
and leans in closer. “Stop being a stubborn ball of rage for just a millisecond and give me
you. Not Ransley the street fighter. Not Ransley the sadist. Not Ransley the pessimist. I
want you. Take all the damn curtains down and just look at me.”
I can’t look away. His eyes won’t let me. All of a sudden, my chest starts to quiver
and it’s hard to breathe. I can’t let it out. I don’t want to.
“I am looking at you.”
“Come on, Rans. Take them down,” he whispers softly.
I breathe in deep. He’s going to make me fall apart. Some might say that’s a good
thing. That I’ve been trying to stay strong too long, or some sort of mierda like that. So, I
guess that’s what I am. Despite the fact that I knew I needed to keep it together.
I’m weak. “Don’t do this, Roy.”
“What would be so bad about being vulnerable in front of me? At least give me
vulnerability where a recent death isn’t involved. I mean, you’ve collapsed, but only
when Estevan and Reggie died. I want to see you. I want to see you vulnerable.”
“Vulnerable is just another word for ‘weak’ and you know it. I’m not weak. This is
who I am, and if you can’t handle that—”
Roy tilts his head and narrows his eyes. “Are you sure about that?”
I’m not. My eyes mist and I look away from him. Shaking my head, I think to myself,
I can’t do this. I can’t let myself be this person. Days ago I told myself I couldn’t do this,
that from there on out, I would be the strong one, like I always have been.
“It’s . . . it’s nothing new. Just let it go.”
Roy angles his head. “Rans.”
Something about his touch and his voice shatters me. It all just rolls off my tongue
before my mind realizes what’s flying out.
“I can’t . . .” the words catch, “I can’t do anything right.” My eyes close and I curse
myself inwardly. “I killed Papá. I couldn’t save Reggie from my deranged brother. To
make things worse, I’ve let Lobb . . . or Roman . . . I don’t know, but I’ve let them into
my head and they just sit in there with knives and shovels, digging into me. Reminding
me that I failed. That they control me, everything. Everything I am, and everything I want
was predetermined for me and it feels like there’s nothing I can do to change any of it! I
just can’t do it.”
That’s it. I can’t. I wanted to believe that I could; that I had some sort of control over
any of this, and I don’t. I’m even beginning to think I cause more problems than I solve.
Leaving Papá and then killing him, taking Reggie into Public Four where she was then
abducted. Who have I been trying to kid? Nate was right. When they thought I was
sleeping off my injuries the night Roy beat me, he told Reggie I’d get someone killed.
“One of us should have gone with her,” Reggie said to Nate while I rested in
Carmen’s room, my body heating up, healing the bruises and cuts. Not hot enough to heal
the hurt inside.
“And what would we have done? Huh? Instead of one of us being almost dead, maybe
you or I would have come back completely dead. The way I see it, she shouldn’t have
gone out in the first damn place.”
“Nate . . .”
“No. Reggie, she’s impulsive, rash, and she’s going to get either herself or someone
else killed. It’s time you realize that. I know you want to help her, but,” he paused, “Reg,
we may need to make a plan without her.”
He was right, then. I’m a liability. I always have been.
Roy slowly takes my face in his warm hands and gazes directly into the cold corners
of my mind. “Estevan’s death wasn’t your fault and I don’t know how many times I need
to say it. Roman was the bastard who killed Reggie. Not you, or me, or Nate. If there’s
one thing I know, it’s that The Public doesn’t control you any more than they’re
controlling me. We’ve gone over this. Sure, I know I’m ‘supposed’ to love you, but that
doesn’t mean I haven’t chosen to want you. Me,” he emphasizes, “I want this.”
Roy gently brushes his thumb on my cheek. My heart drops and I shake my head. He
holds my head tighter, stopping my protest. “Look, the best part about all of this is when
Lobb’s gone, when Roman’s just a bad memory, and The Public is blown off the face of
this earth, I’m going to want nothing more than to sex you up for the rest of my life.”
I sigh in disgust and I’m finally able to look away from him, all while driving my fist
lightly into his ribcage. Roy grins and chuckles, licking his bottom lip. “There. Do you
“I don’t understand exactly why, but . . . yes. I do. Thank you for being such an
I roll my eyes. “Not exactly. I just called you a dick.”
Roy thinks on that, his lips curving down into a frown. Finally, he shrugs and gives
me a crooked smile. “I aim to please.” He brushes my hair off my forehead and leans
The kiss is soft. Not a touch of insensitivity or mocking in the movement of his rough lips
on mine. It’s comfortable. Familiar, and full of the care and respect I know he has for me,
despite his rude bullshit. Suddenly, Nate is forgotten. My pain is gone. For a few brief
minutes, I feel like I’m home.
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5 out of 5 stars!
“The future always changes. Like water ripples interrupted by a falling stick, the afterimage can be disrupted, and in the end, only the strongest claim dominion.”
What just happened to me? I am convinced that Kowallis’s goal was to have her readers feeling as completely ravaged as her characters felt. Well mam,
You broke me.
Over and over again. You had me doubting EVERYTHING. I was stuck in this place of unyielding paranoia. I had to question pretty much everyone, even people I would have sworn were unwavering in their cause. Even my FAVORITE characters were not safe. Even if it was just for a brief moment, I doubted their intentions, I wondered if they could possibly be going darkside.
And I can just picture you sitting there after finishing writing Dominion cackling with your evil author laugh like…
Dominion was an intense, high anxiety adrenaline rush that does not relent until the very end. And I would not give back a moment of it. Thankfully, Kowallis somehow manages to sneak in a few really sweet moments that end up feeling even more precious because they are happening amidst the sheer chaos going on around them. I also think this book especially highlights just how wonderfully complex the characters are in this series. Each one shows such a wide range in Dominion. No one is the same as they were when they started out in this journey, which is what you want to see by the last book. Even when you were seeing the worst of them they still had your heart, even if, as Roy so eloquently put it, they have that “damn stubbornness and piece-of-shit attitudes that make people want to hit you in the face with a hammer.”. Just another reason I adore Roy. That man is a ROCK. I never ceased to be amazed by how stead-fast he was through everything, and he stayed true to that through all the insanity he had to endure in this one.
It is really hard to fully gush about this book because there are just so many things that would spoil the full experience of it and I refuse to do that. If you’ve come this far with the series I promise that Dominion does not disappoint. You’ll feel like a war torn mess after reading it, but you will also feel a sense of peace and hopefulness at the end. Which considering everything that went down in this series, is more than you can ask for.
Now, if you’re one of the unfortunate souls that has not yet started this series…WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?
It is complete now, and if dystopian is something you like than this series is a DO NOT MISS! I truly can’t recommend it enough.
I am sad to say goodbye to this series, but I am completely fulfilled and content with the way it ended. And I CAN’T WAIT to see what J. Kowallis comes up with next!
I received an ARC of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.