- Page Count: 400
- Release Date: December 27, 2016
- My Rating: 4 stars
Seventeen year-old Britta Flannery is at ease only in the woods with her dagger and bow. She spends her days tracking criminals alongside her father, the legendary bounty hunter for the King of Malam—that is, until her father is murdered. Now outcast and alone and having no rights to her father’s land or inheritance, she seeks refuge where she feels most safe: the Ever Woods. When Britta is caught poaching by the royal guard, instead of facing the noose she is offered a deal: her freedom in exchange for her father’s killer.
However, it’s not so simple.
The alleged killer is none other than Cohen McKay, her father’s former apprentice. The only friend she’s ever known. The boy she once loved who broke her heart. She must go on a dangerous quest in a world of warring kingdoms, mad kings, and dark magic to find the real killer. But Britta wields more power than she knows. And soon she will learn what has always made her different will make her a daunting and dangerous force.
This reminded me of several other YA books I love (like Ruined by Amy Tintera), but was also totally its own story. I don’t want to say much in terms of summarizing the story, though, because even the most basic plot points don’t get revealed until like 65%.
The first half of the story set the tone for the series by establishing the war, the two kingdoms, and that one kingdom accepts magic while the other persecutes it. Britta wanders around the wilderness a lot with a guy, but there’s no instalove because she already has history with him. Then the second half of the story picks up and starts weaving different storylines together and flipping everything you thought you knew around. I really loved two of the secondary characters!
The beginning was slower moving, but it also never got dull. It’s a first person narration that actually worked for me because I liked Britta! The guys in her life have been pretty controlling and protected her by leaving her or not telling her anything (which really bugged me), so a lot of the story is her learning the truth.
And if you like the slower pretty scenes in fantasy books where characters are walking through forests (like in Shadowfell), then the world here is PERFECT.
I was also pretty impressed with how this story managed to be well-rounded while still setting up a ton of leads for the sequels! The last few sentences were bit of a cliffhanger that made the next book WAY more interesting. Pretty sure one of these stars is just for that ending!
Thank you to the publisher for sending me an ARC!
See my Q&A with author Erin Summerill here!