Blog Tour: The Bone Shard Emperor – Andrea Stewart

Blog Tour: The Bone Shard Emperor – Andrea Stewart


Series:
The Drowning Empire #2 (See my review of book one here!)
Release Date: November 23rd 2021
Publisher: Orbit Books
Pages: 416
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis

Andrea Stewart returns with The Bone Shard Emperor, the second installment of this unmissable, action-packed, magic-laced fantasy epic.

The Emperor is Dead. Long live the Emperor.

Lin Sukai finally sits on the throne she won at so much cost, but her struggles are only just beginning. Her people don’t trust her. Her political alliances are weak. And in the north-east of the Empire, a rebel army of constructs is gathering, its leader determined to take the throne by force.

Yet an even greater threat is on the horizon, for the Alanga – the powerful magicians of legend – have returned to the Empire. They claim they come in peace, and Lin will need their help in order to defeat the rebels and restore peace.

But can she trust them?

Review

The Bone Shard Emperor is the stunning second instalment in Andrea Stewart’s The Drowned Empire series. Book one The Bone Shard Daughter was one of my favourite reads of 2020 (and all-time) so I was incredibly excited to get my hands on the sequel. Picking up where we left off in book one, Lin now sits on the throne, but her troubles are far from over. A rebel army of constructs is on the way, determined to take the throne, her alliances are far from strong and she is unsure who to trust. When the Alanga return to the Empire and claim to come in peace, Lin knows she will need their help if she has any hope of bringing peace to the Empire, but can she really trust them?

So many fantasy series struggle with that second book syndrome but that is definitely not the case with this series. I was captivated from the get-go and I thought Stewart did an excellent job continuing the story. There were so many things I loved about this book – we delve even deeper into the world and I was so fascinated by the level of detail Andrea puts in the worldbuilding. The story is quite slow-paced, giving the reader plenty of time to get to grips with this fascinating world and magic system.

Where the story really excels is the characters that we fell in love with in The Bone Shard Daughter. Stewart has created some really complex characters both dealing with so many things. The story is told in multiple perspectives, with the majority coming from Lin and Jovis. There are so many characters in this book that I loved. I really adored Lin and seeing her attempt to do the right thing and be a good ruler after her father’s reign.

The Bone Shard Emperor is an impressive sequel and one I did not want to end. I still have so many questions left unanswered and I am dying to find out how it all ends in The Bone Shard War. If you’re a fantasy fan this series is an absolute must-read and if you’ve already picked up book one, you are not going to want to miss book two!


Blog Tour: Cytonic – Brandon Sanderson

Blog Tour: Cytonic – Brandon Sanderson


Series:
Skyward #3 (See my review of book one here!)
Release Date: November 23rd 2021
Publisher: Gollancz
Pages: 432
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis

Spensa’s life as a Defiant Defense Force pilot has been far from ordinary. She proved herself one of the best starfighters in the human enclave of Detritus and she saved her people from extermination at the hands of the Krell—the enigmatic alien species that has been holding them captive for decades. What’s more, she traveled light-years from home as an undercover spy to infiltrate the Superiority, where she learned of the galaxy beyond her small, desolate planet home.

Now, the Superiority—the governing galactic alliance bent on dominating all human life—has started a galaxy-wide war. And Spensa’s seen the weapons they plan to use to end it: the Delvers. Ancient, mysterious alien forces that can wipe out entire planetary systems in an instant. Spensa knows that no matter how many pilots the DDF has, there is no defeating this predator.

Except that Spensa is Cytonic. She faced down a Delver and saw something eerily familiar about it. And maybe, if she’s able to figure out what she is, she could be more than just another pilot in this unfolding war. She could save the galaxy.

The only way she can discover what she really is, though, is to leave behind all she knows and enter the Nowhere. A place from which few ever return.

To have courage means facing fear. And this mission is terrifying.

Review

Cytonic is the early awaited third instalment in Brandon Sanderson’s epic Skyward series. The story follows Spensa as she has gone from life as a space cadet to one of the best pilots in the Defiant Defence Force. Now an undercover spy infiltrating the Superiority, she has seen the Delvers the Superiority plan to use in the war. Spensa much discover what she truly is if she has any hope of saving the galaxy from destruction.

Cytonic was one of my most anticipated releases and as soon as it arrived I dived straight in, reading long into the night and finishing it in a single day. The story was action-packed and I did not want it to end. Picking up after the events of Starsight, we follow Spensa on her quest to Nowhere. I won’t say too much about the plot because this is the third book in the series, but this installment felt a bit different because Spensa was on her own personal mission. We also meet a new character in this book named Chet and I thought he was a brilliant addition to the fascinating cast of characters Sanderson has created in this series.

Spensa is the perfect protagonist and over the course of the three books, I have really grown attached to her. It’s fascinating to watch as she continues to grow and learn. Like the previous books, there is loads of humour and banter that kept me hooked to the story. Cytonic is a fast-paced story – there’s just something about Sanderson’s writing that makes you so absorbed in the story that you don’t release hundreds of pages have flown by.

Cytonic is an incredible installment in the Skyward series and readers will be on the edge of their seats till the very last page. If you haven’t yet had the chance to try this series, it’s an absolute must-read!

Blog Tour: The Path and the Way – Michael S. Jackson

Blog Tour: The Path and the Way – Michael S. Jackson

Series: The Ringlander #1
Release Date: April 27th 2021
Pages: 484
Find it on: Goodreads. Amazon.
Source: The author kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis

Holes between worlds are tearing through Rengas. Firestorms are raging as multiple realities battle for control of the elements. Even the Way, the turbulent channel that separates Nord, Határ and Kemen, the lifeblood of the city of Tyr, has turned.

Kyira’s search for her missing brother draws her away from the familiar frozen lines of Nord and south into the chaotic streets of Tyr where games are played & battles fought. As reality tears Kyira must choose between her family or her path before the worlds catch up with her.

Review

When I first heard about Ringlander: The Path and the Way I was immediately intrigued – partly because of that stunning cover – but also because it sounded like such a unique and engaging tale. In a world in which holes are beginning to tear between worlds, we follow Kyira, a young girl trying to find her missing brother. Her search will take her away from everything she knows – her home in freezing Nord to the bustling streets of Tyr. As Kyira fights to find her brother and stay alive reality begins to tear, forcing her to choose between the things most important to her: her family or her path.

The thing that struck me most about this book was how much I was torn between reading it slowly, savouring the fascinating world and magic system or racing through it because it was so compelling and I just had to know what was going to happen. This is an exceptionally addictive read, one that is well-paced and excellently plotted. The story kept me engaged throughout and as soon as I finished it I was desperate for more. The Path and the Way felt like such a fresh take on this type of story and despite it being a thicker book I read it in only a few sittings.

Jackson really excels at creating multi-layered characters and I find it rare to read a multi-POV story where I’m captivated by all of their storylines. There’s usually always one or two I am less fond of but each one was fascinating. Kyria is a particularly compelling character, battling to find her brother and succeed despite the odds being stacked against her. If you’re someone who loves books with plenty of action, this book definitely has you covered. From the very first page, there is tons to keep you hooked and turning pages late into the night.

The Path and the Way is an impressive tale and one that I did not want to end. If you’re looking for a fantasy read with detailed worldbuilding and incredible characters, this one is a must-read. The Path and the Way is absolutely one of my favourite fantasy reads of the year and I can’t wait to read more from Michael S. Jackson.

Blog Tour: The Wisdom of Crowds – Joe Abercrombie

Blog Tour: The Wisdom of Crowds – Joe Abercrombie

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Series: The Age of Madness #3
Release Date: September 14th 2021
Pages: 560
Publisher: Gollancz
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis

Chaos. Fury. Destruction.

The Great Change is upon us…

Some say that to change the world you must first burn it down. Now that belief will be tested in the crucible of revolution: the Breakers and Burners have seized the levers of power, the smoke of riots has replaced the smog of industry, and all must submit to the wisdom of crowds.

With nothing left to lose, Citizen Brock is determined to become a new hero for the new age, while Citizeness Savine must turn her talents from profit to survival before she can claw her way to redemption. Orso will find that when the world is turned upside down, no one is lower than a monarch. And in the bloody North, Rikke and her fragile Protectorate are running out of allies… while Black Calder gathers his forces and plots his vengeance.

The banks have fallen, the sun of the Union has been torn down, and in the darkness behind the scenes, the threads of the Weaver’s ruthless plan are slowly being drawn together…

Review

The Wisdom of Crowds is the third and final installment in Joe Abercrombie’s The Age of Madness series. Picking up after the events of The Trouble With Peace, this story is full to the brim with chaos and revolution. A magnificent conclusion to an incredibly gripping trilogy, this final book was everything I wanted and more.

Joe Abercrombie is one of my favourite authors and going into this book I had the highest of expectations, but even with that Abercrombie still managed to blow me away. Abercrombie does a brilliant job of wrapping things up and creates a heart pounding finale that I did not want to look away from.

I won’t say much about the plot as it is the third book in the series but there is an excellent mix of action and political intrigue in the story. Abercombie has a real knack for writing dynamic and engaging battle scenes. The Wisdom of Crowds is the kind of book that hooks you in from that very first page and doesn’t let you go till the very end.

The Age of Madness trilogy has felt like a fresh prospective on the typical fantasy story and Abercrombie has created some truly incredible characters. There are so many complex and fascinating characters but throughout the series Rikke and Savine have been my favourites. This has been such a compelling trilogy and The Wisdom of Crowds is an absolute must read. Though I am sad to see the series completed, I cannot wait to see what Joe Abercrombie writes next.

5 Stars

Blog Tour: The Hand of the Sun King – J. T. Greathouse

Blog Tour: The Hand of the Sun King – J. T. Greathouse


Series:
Pact and Pattern #1
Release Date: August 5th 2021
Publisher: Gollancz
Pages: 367
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis

My name is Wen Alder. My name is Foolish Cur.

All my life, I have been torn between two legacies: that of my father, whose roots trace back to the right hand of the Emperor. That of my mother’s family, who reject the oppressive Empire and embrace the resistance.

I can choose between them – between protecting my family, or protecting my people – or I can search out a better path . . . a magical path, filled with secrets, unbound by Empire or resistance, which could shake my world to its very foundation.

But my search for freedom will entangle me in a war between the gods themselves…

Review

The Hand of the Sun King is a vivid and engrossing epic fantasy debut from J T Greathouse. The story follows Wen Alder, or Foolish Cur who is torn between the two sides of his family. There is the legacy of his father, who can trace his ancestry to the right hand of the Emperor. Then there is his mother’s family, staunch objectors to the Empire and part of the resistance. Wen finds himself torn between protecting his family or his people, but his path could lead him to something much greater – a place of magic and secrets away from the influence of the Empire or the resistance. But taking this path will entangle him in a war greater than he could possibly imagine.

The Hand of the Sun King is such a well-executed story and one I completely fell in love with. The world-building was well crafted and I was completely fascinated by the world Greathouse has created in this story. I also thought the magic system was really intriguing, particularly as the story progressed and we learned more. Greathouse has a really vivid writing style and the setting was really brought to life in the story. I raced through this book in a matter of days and I cannot wait to see where the story goes next. This coming of age tale will appeal to so many readers as it’s full to the brim with magic, action-packed battle scenes and well-crafted characters.

One of the things that really shines in The Hand of the Sun is the complex characters. Wen is a really fascinating story and there is so much character growth as the story progresses. He isn’t always the most likeable of characters as he goes on his journey, but he was certainly a compelling protagonist, dealing with conflicting loyalties and searching for his path in life. The Hand of the Sun King is a brilliant read, one with absolutely beautiful writing and an intriguing world. The book has already been getting lots of hype and it’s easy to see why. This will definitely be in my top books of the year and I cannot wait to read more from J T Greathouse.

Book Review: Tall Bones – Anna Bailey

Book Review: Tall Bones – Anna Bailey


Release Date:
April 1st 2021
Publisher: Doubleday
Pages: 352
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: I received a copy of this book as part of the Tandem Collective readalong
Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis

When seventeen-year-old Emma leaves her best friend Abi at a party in the woods, she believes, like most girls her age, that their lives are just beginning. Many things will happen that night, but Emma will never see her friend again.

Abi’s disappearance cracks open the façade of the small town of Whistling Ridge, its intimate history of long-held grudges and resentment. Even within Abi’s family, there are questions to be asked – of Noah, the older brother whom Abi betrayed, of Jude, the shining younger sibling who hides his battle scars, of Dolly, her mother and Samuel, her father – both in thrall to the fire and brimstone preacher who holds the entire town in his grasp. Then there is Rat, the outsider, whose presence in the town both unsettles and excites those around him.

Anything could happen in Whistling Ridge, this tinder box of small-town rage, and all it will take is just one spark – the truth of what really happened that night out at the Tall Bones….

Review

Tall Bones is without a doubt my favourite mystery novel of 2021. This utterly unforgettable book follows the residents of Whistling Ridge as a young girl named Abi goes missing after a party in the woods. As the search to uncover what happened to Abi begins, questions and long-held resentments are brought to the surface. Will the truth of what really happened be revealed – and at what cost?

Tall Bones is the sort of book that you read in a single feverish sitting. The tense, uneasy atmosphere that fills this book is so well executed and I loved the way the tension continued to build as the story progressed. This is a completely enthralling read, one that really focuses in on life in small-town America. The story is really well-plotted, giving you the time to get to know the different characters. All the characters are well crafted and I loved how each one dealt with their grief of missing Abi in their own way. All the residents of Whistling Ridge have secrets and it was so fascinating to see the townspeople grow suspicious of each other as they attempt to uncover what happened to Abi. The characters felt very relatable and that made the story even more chilling. Tall Bones is definitely one of those books that you still think about months after turning the last page.

Tall Bones has had a lot of hype recently, and it is easy to see why. This is a captivating read, one I think mystery fans will absolutely love. Bailey has a really engrossing writing style and Tall Bones is a very impressive debut novel and I cannot wait to see what she writes next.

Blog Tour: Dragon Mage – M L Spencer

Blog Tour: Dragon Mage – M L Spencer


Series:
Rivenworld #1
Release Date: January 8th 2021
Publisher: Stoneguard Publications
Pages: 982
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: I received a copy of this book through Storytellers Tours
Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis

Aram Raythe has the power to challenge the gods. He just doesn’t know it yet.

Aram thinks he’s nothing but a misfit from a small fishing village in a dark corner of the world. As far as Aram knows, he has nothing, with hardly a possession to his name other than a desire to make friends and be accepted by those around him, which is something he’s never known.

But Aram is more. Much, much more.

Unknown to him, Aram bears within him a gift so old and rare that many people would kill him for it, and there are others who would twist him to use for their own sinister purposes. These magics are so potent that Aram earns a place at an academy for warrior mages training to earn for themselves the greatest place of honor among the armies of men: dragon riders.

Aram will have to fight for respect by becoming not just a dragon rider, but a Champion, the caliber of mage that hasn’t existed in the world for hundreds of years. And the land needs a Champion. Because when a dark god out of ancient myth arises to threaten the world of magic, it is Aram the world will turn to in its hour of need.

Review

Dragon Mage is a book that I have seen around quite a lot recently and I have heard nothing but incredible things. I went in with pretty high expectations and this brilliant coming of age story has immediately rocketed into my favourite books of 2021.

Dragon Mage follows Aram, a young boy living in a small fishing village. Seen as an outcast, all Aram wants is to make friends. What Aram doesn’t know is that he has a rare and powerful magic within him – magic that people would kill him for, or use him for their own gain. This magic earns Aram a place at the academy – a plan to train and become a dragon rider. With this comes the chance to be a Champion, something the world has not seen for hundreds of years. When the world of magic becomes in danger of a vengeful god, only a champion will be able to stop them. But will Aram survive?

Dragon Mage is a big book, coming in at just under 1000 pages. The story Spencer has created is incredibly well crafted and I was so invested in Aram and his journey. I was never once bored and completely fell in love with this world and these characters. This coming of age fantasy adventure is everything I could possibly have wanted and I am so excited to learn there will be more books in the series.

Spencer has created some truly wonderful characters in this book and that is most evident with our main protagonist Aram. From the very first chapters, I was rooting for him, when all he wants is to have a friend. Dragon Mage is this epic journey as he finds himself and his place in the world. I similarly really liked Markus, Aram’s friend who sticks by him no matter what. I loved seeing their relationship grow as the story progressed and they are tested in ways they don’t expect. The worldbuilding in this story is excellent and everything felt really fleshed out. I can’t wait to see where Spencer is going to take us next.

The world of Dragon Mage is a dark one, and there’s plenty of action scenes to keep the reader hooked. I really enjoyed Spencer’s writing style and it was so easy to get lost in this world for hours at a time. There were definitely moments I sat down to read a chapter or two and glanced up and I’d been captivated by the story for several hours. Dragon Mage is a brilliant, gripping read – one that classic fantasy fans will adore.


Book Review: Mrs England – Stacey Halls

Book Review: Mrs England – Stacey Halls


Release Date:
June 10th 2021
Publisher: Zaffre Books
Pages: 400
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis

West Yorkshire, 1904.

When newly graduated nurse Ruby May takes a position looking after the children of Charles and Lilian England, a wealthy couple from a powerful dynasty of mill owners, she hopes it will be the fresh start she needs. But as she adapts to life at the isolated Hardcastle House, it becomes clear there’s something not quite right about the beautiful, mysterious Mrs England. Ostracised by the servants and feeling increasingly uneasy, Ruby is forced to confront her own demons in order to prevent history from repeating itself. After all, there’s no such thing as the perfect family – and she should know.

Simmering with slow-burning menace, Mrs England is a portrait of an Edwardian marriage, weaving an enthralling story of men and women, power and control, courage, truth and the very darkest deception. Set against the atmospheric landscape of West Yorkshire, Stacey Halls’ third novel proves her one of the most exciting and compelling new storytellers of our times.

Review

Mrs England is the third book from historical fiction writer Stacey Halls. I read and love both The Familiars and The Foundling, so this was an incredibly anticipated release for me. The story follows Nurse Ruby May a graduate of the Norland Institute. When she is forced to leave her position she knows she needs to find another as soon as possible. When the opportunity comes up to be a nurse to the four England children, Ruby takes the position immediately. When she arrives in Yorkshire she soon finds things aren’t right with the family. Mrs England is detached and mysterious, and the servants won’t talk to her. As Ruby spends more time with the family, she uncovers more than she could possibly imagine.

Stacey Halls is one of those authors where you start reading the book and then become immediately torn between reading it slowly to savour the beautiful writing, or racing through it in a single night because of the compelling story. For me I ended up reading this until the wee hours of the morning, I just had to know what was happening with the England family. The story is really addictive and it has such a fascinating premise. It really focuses on the idea of marriage and power in a relationship. Yorkshire really comes to life in the beautiful and vivid writing and I felt completely transported back to that time period.

Like her previous novels, you can tell an immense amount of research has gone into this story. I loved the slow-building feeling of menace in the story, it’s so atmospheric and there were some moments that definitely gave me a feeling of dread. One of the most compelling things for me was the complex characters – so many of them are way more than they seem on the surface. Mr and Mrs England were brilliant characters and Halls has a brilliant way of making you question who they truly are. Ruby is a really interesting protagonist and I loved learning about her family and her past alongside her time with the Englands.

Stacey Halls is rapidly becoming my favourite historical fiction writer. This is another brilliantly plotted and well-executed tale, one that I will be recommending to everyone I know. If you love historical fiction this one is a must-read.

Blog Tour: Monstrous Design – Kat Dunn

Blog Tour: Monstrous Design – Kat Dunn


Series:
Battalion of the Dead #2 (See my review of book one here!)
Release Date: June 10th 2021
Publisher: Zephyr Books
Pages: 432
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis

1794, London: Camille and Al are desperately hunting Olympe’s kidnapper. From the glamorous excesses of the Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens to the city’s seedy underbelly, they are caught in a dangerous game of lies and deceit. And a terrible new enemy lies in wait with designs more monstrous than they could ever imagine… Can Camille play on to the end or will she be forced to show her hand?

In Paris, the Duc is playing his own dangerous games. With Ada in his thrall, old loyalties are thrown into question. The Battalion are torn apart as never before, and everything – Ada’s love for Camille, her allegiance to the battalion itself – is under threat.

Review

Monstrous Design is the second instalment in Kat Dunn’s thrilling Battalion of the Dead series. The story picks up right after the events of Dangerous Remedy. We follow Camille and Al as they attempt to get Olympe back and we follow Ada and Guil as they attempt to find where the Duc is hiding out. As the stakes get higher alliances are soon called into question – but will the battalion of the dead be able to survive their latest adventure?

Dangerous Remedy was one of my favourite books of 2020. It was one of those books I still thought about months after reading it, and Monstrous Design was one of my most anticipated releases of 2021. Monstrous Design is action-packed – it’s a rollercoaster ride that does not stop till the very last page. It’s a pretty fast-paced story and despite being nearly 500 pages I read it in a single day. Dunn really hooks the reader in with this addictive plot that’s full of twists – with everyone playing their own game I never quite knew what was going to happen next.

In Monstrous Design we are transported to England as well as France and Dunn really makes the sights and sounds of both cities come alive in the story. My favourite thing about Dangerous Remedy was the brilliant characters and that was definitely the same in Monstrous Design. I loved being back with the Batallion again and it was fascinating seeing how the characters grow in this second instalment. I think Al is still my favourite, but I honestly love them all. I also really liked getting to know James more and learning more about his motivations as a character. He was a really fascinating POV character – he is really complex and torn between loyalties. Like wise I loved Camille and Ada, they are such compelling characters and I think I could read a dozen books about the crew and their daring heists.

Monstrous Design is a brilliant sequel and I am incredibly excited to see where Kat Dunn will take us in book three. If you’ve been curious about this series I definitely recommend picking it up and if you’ve already read Dangerous Remedy, you need to pick up book two now!

Book Review: The Wolf and the Woodsman – Ava Reid

Book Review: The Wolf and the Woodsman – Ava Reid


Release Date:
June 8th 2021
Publisher: Del Rey
Pages: 448
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis

In her forest-veiled pagan village, Évike is the only woman without power, making her an outcast clearly abandoned by the gods. The villagers blame her corrupted bloodline—her father was a Yehuli man, one of the much-loathed servants of the fanatical king. When soldiers arrive from the Holy Order of Woodsmen to claim a pagan girl for the king’s blood sacrifice, Évike is betrayed by her fellow villagers and surrendered.

But when monsters attack the Woodsmen and their captive en route, slaughtering everyone but Évike and the cold, one-eyed captain, they have no choice but to rely on each other. Except he’s no ordinary Woodsman—he’s the disgraced prince, Gáspár Bárány, whose father needs pagan magic to consolidate his power. Gáspár fears that his cruelly zealous brother plans to seize the throne and instigate a violent reign that would damn the pagans and the Yehuli alike. As the son of a reviled foreign queen, Gáspár understands what it’s like to be an outcast, and he and Évike make a tenuous pact to stop his brother.

As their mission takes them from the bitter northern tundra to the smog-choked capital, their mutual loathing slowly turns to affection, bound by a shared history of alienation and oppression. However, trust can easily turn to betrayal, and as Évike reconnects with her estranged father and discovers her own hidden magic, she and Gáspár need to decide whose side they’re on, and what they’re willing to give up for a nation that never cared for them at all.

Review

The Wolf and the Woodsman is the dark and captivating tale of Évike, the only woman in her pagan worshipping village without magic. When the king demands a pagan girl as a blood sacrifice, the village offers Évike up. En route to the capital with the deadly Woodsman, they are attacked, leaving only Évike and the captain left alive. She soon learns he is more than he seems and the two must reluctantly team up to stop an attempt to seize the throne that will have catastrophic repercussions for both the pagans and the Yehuli people.

I’ve been trying to find a book that will fill the hole left by Katherine Arden’s Winternight Trilogy and this is absolutely it. With beautiful writing and a wonderful fairytale-style story, The Wolf and the Woodsman completely sucked me in and stole my heart. This book has immediately catapulted to one of my favourite books of all time. I loved everything about this book. Reid has a really lyrical writing style, the world she has created practically leaps off the page and I was completely fascinated by the magic in this story. There is lots of body horror and quite a bit of gore in the story, but it’s an incredibly well-executed story, and one I did not want to end.

One of the things I loved most about this story is the incredible characters Reid has created. Évike is a really compelling protagonist, attempting to understand where she fits in the world being half pagan and half Yehuli. Gáspár is similarly a really fascinating character and I loved watching the relationship between the two develop as the story unfolds. The story is steeped in Jewish folklore and mythology, which I found completely fascinating. The story also very much focuses on the horrors of religious persecution and ethnic cleansing, inspired by events in Hungarian history.

The Wolf and the Woodsman is the sort of book that I was completely torn between racing through to see how it ended and taking my time to savour every moment. This is an incredible debut, and I cannot wait to read more from Ava Reid. It’s definitely the kind of book that stays with you long after you’ve finished reading. This book has already been getting quite a bit of hype and it is absolutely well deserved. If you’re a fan of books by Katherine Arden and Naomi Novik, this is a must-read.