Note: I didn't not read former renditions/critiques so as to come at it fresh. If you've already addressed a point in the comments and I missed it making points here redundant, apologies :)
Iris is a survivor of a monstrous takeover that
has left the world in ruin Off to a good start, I'm interested :). After losing everyone she loves, her only family all she has left is a Maltese dog named Bentley is Bentley super critical to the story? Cuz I feel like you has a super strong start, then I learn that her family is dead... except for the dog, which while he might be a comfort, wouldn't actually be that helpful in the apocalypse (unless he is?). But without her brother to guide her, enduring is going to be more of a challenge than ever. I'm not sure why the brother is more important than the rest of her family? Did he formerly tell her what to do? I'm a little thrown by this sentence, it makes you MC seems like a bit of a weakling that can't take care of herself
She had closed herself off when he died one year before the world ended this feels repetitive, we already know he's dead and the world is altered, but if Iris wants to survive in this new domain of chaos
she finds herself in, she must learn to accept others into her life once again. Even if that includes an otherworldly boy who fell from the sky. This is the first interesting thing since your hook, I want more of this ;)
When Iris and her new friends steal an enchanted orb why would she do this? what are the stakes?, they draw the attention of an entity of darkness known as Krux. He invades Iris’s dreams, threatening to brutally execute her friends I thought she only had one friend and the dog? unless she returns what is rightfully his. Iris can’t face losing her new family but she knows Krux’s intentions are malevolent this seems like clumsy word choice, I know what you're going for, but it doesn't quite hit the mark.
Iris may have to accept the fact that she is the reincarnation of an ancient evil in order to protect her new family This kind of comes out of left field. It's interesting but totally diverts from the story you've previously been setting up for the reader. She would die for her friends, but embracing the rage within her could turn her into something worse than Krux. If she doesn’t, the world will succumb to the entity of darkness and all Iris has come to love will be destroyed again. Okay good, I've got stakes now! I'd consider dumping a lot of the backstory up to this point and expanding on her potential reincarnation and the problems with it.
Something along the lines of:
-when X falls from the sky...
-Iris opens her heart again after losing her family in X...
-they have to steal (why?)
-this causes blowback
-finds out she's a reincarnation that could cause bad stuff
-stakes (damned if ya do, damned if ya don't kind of thing)
IRIS MJOLNIR SPAWN OF WAR is a 92,000 word
, young adult, apocalyptic fantasy novel. It is a standalone novel with series potential.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
So I think you've got some super interesting point getting buried by a lot of fluff. Based on the title I was expecting reference to Norse Mythology, so I felt a bit like I got left hanging on that point. I think you ned to flesh out the stakes a bit more to make the read more enticing, and give us a reason to root for Iris even when we're not sure if she's going to turn into a "goody" or a "baddy"
I think on your next go-round you need to be a bit more brutal with word choice. As a former teacher I used to make my students defend their writing by asking the questions: "why this word in this place, and not a different word in another place?"
Hope this helps with revisions and isn't too harsh (I was a very mean grader as a teacher)
I'd love feedback on my inquiry if you are able, thanks!