Series:The Witchlands, #1
Publication: January 5th 2016 by Tor Teen
On a continent ruled by three empires, some are born with a “witchery”, a magical skill that sets them apart from others.
In the Witchlands, there are almost as many types of magic as there are ways to get in trouble—as two desperate young women know all too well.
Safiya is a Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lie. It’s a powerful magic that many would kill to have on their side, especially amongst the nobility to which Safi was born. So Safi must keep her gift hidden, lest she be used as a pawn in the struggle between empires.
Iseult, a Threadwitch, can see the invisible ties that bind and entangle the lives around her—but she cannot see the bonds that touch her own heart. Her unlikely friendship with Safi has taken her from life as an outcast into one of reckless adventure, where she is a cool, wary balance to Safi’s hotheaded impulsiveness.
Safi and Iseult just want to be free to live their own lives, but war is coming to the Witchlands. With the help of the cunning Prince Merik (a Windwitch and ship’s captain) and the hindrance of a Bloodwitch bent on revenge, the friends must fight emperors, princes, and mercenaries alike, who will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.
My spoiler free thoughts:
I really really enjoyed Truthwitch. It was a fantastic start to what I can already tell is going to be an epic series!
Lets start with talking about the character because they were all so complex and interesting and badass and just overall amazing!
Safi, is a truthwitch so she can tell when someone is telling the truth or when they're lying. She's kind of like a human lie detector. I thought her magic was so interesting; I've never read anything like it. She definitely more reckless/impulsive than her threadsister (AKA best friend), Iseult. But I loved her all the same, she is such a fierce vibrant character.
Iseult has an even more interesting power. As a threadwitch her magic allows her to see thread that bind people together. So she can see threads of love, friendship, grief etc. kind of like a mood detector. She's a lot more complex than Safi, and that's what makes her so interesting. She tries to hide her emotions and she thinks before she acts.
Safi is probably my favourite character but Merik might end up stealing that title from her. He's such a complex character and I loved watching his personality unfold as the story went on. His character development was well paced. And lets face it I'm a sucker for a handsome prince in any story.
I loved how there was a major focus on friendship. Romances can be fun and all but it's friendship that I always enjoy reading most. Iseult and Safi's friendship obviously takes centre stage but I really liked seeing Merik and his threadbrother, Kullen's relationship too. Safi and Iseult are a kickass pair who are seriously #FriendshipGoals. Their love for each other was so touching to read. These two girls would do anything for each other, they protect and look out for each other in every way possible. It's the kind of friendship everyone wants/hopes to have in their life. I think theirs will grow to be one of my favourite fictional relationships with more books. We need more friendships as strong as Safi and Iseult's in YA.
There was a hint of romance and I like that it didn't overwhelm the readers, the main focus is always friendship. That being said I liked the little bit of romance we did get. No insta-love here which is great! And no love triangle! I felt like Dennard developed the relationship at the perfect pace, it felt genuine and real (well as real as it can be in a fantasy world). I'm not telling you who the romance is between- you'll have to read the book to find out!
The plot was strong. It held my attention and had a mix of slow and fast paced moments. I didn't mind the slower parts because I felt like that was the time we really got to know the characters. And obviously I loved the fast paced action sequences scattered throughout the story. These two girls definitely know how to fight and win.
My only problem with the book was world and magic system were confusing for the first 50-100 pages so be patient if your struggling because it does click into place eventually. There is just so many different types of witches it can be confusing. I think it would be handy if there was a list at the back of the book of all the types of witches and their power.
The book ended with a nice setup for book 2. I'm excited to see where this series goes. And I know for a fact I'll be picking up the next book as soon a it's released. I might even reread this one before,I liked it so much!
I can't wait to pick up more by Susan Dennard- I think I'll give her Something Strange and Deadly series a go later this year!
My rating: 4 out of 5 stars