Every Christmas, Wren is chased through the woods near her isolated village by her family’s enemies—the Judges—and there’s nothing that she can do to stop it. Once her people, the Augurs, controlled a powerful magic. But now that power lies with the Judges, who are set on destroying her kind for good.
In a desperate bid to save her family, Wren takes a dangerous undercover assignment—as an intern to an influential Judge named Cassa Harkness. Cassa has spent her life researching a transformative spell, which could bring the war between the factions to its absolute end. Caught in a web of deceit, Wren must decide whether or not to gamble on the spell and seal the Augurs’ fate.
I received this book from the publishers via Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.
Oh wow. This was just not what I expected at all. And it is amazing. Fully deserving of the 4.5 stars I’m giving it.
It’s a relatively slow book, but in a good way, as you learn things along with Wren and are never sure who’s lying and manipulating or what the truth is. The story behind the judges and the augurs takes a while to take shape, but that is amazing too. The only thing I didn’t really get was the wren hunt tradition and why theirs was different, but it does an excellent job of setting up the boys characters. And sets up the atmosphere of the whole book nicely too.
Wren is both a great main character and a frustrating one, as she is often in the dark! She is pretty level headed and confused which is nice to see in a MC. I also loved Cassia, I don’t even really know why as we don’t get to see a huge amount of her, but I just do! Less convinced by Tarc, like we don’t really know enough about him and why he’s different to the others.
I also loved the magic in this book. I love when there’s different takes on magic or people having specific powers. I wanted to learn more about how it worked for the judges though! And more about the power sources and how that all works too.
I did also get a little confused by the setting as I imagined a typical fantasy setting and it’s much more modern. The inclusion of the Tesco threw me lol! But actually I really love that too.
And the finally, the ending. I don’t think I could have told you that was how it would work out at all. This book is just SO well done. It’s beautifully written, and well crafted in that all the little pieces suddenly fit perfectly together by the time you get to the end.
This appears to be a stand alone (at the moment, at least) but I am desperate to know what happens next! It is tied up nicely but with plenty of opening for more 😉