ARC Review: Truthwitch (The Witchlands #1) by Susan Dennard (preview)10:00
Series: The Witchlands #1
Author: Susan Dennard
Published 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.
I received an preview Advance Reader Copy from the publisher via NetGalley. This in no way impacted on my view.
Unless you've been living under a rock for the past 6 months or so, you're bound to have heard of this book. Everywhere you turn on Twitter, blogs, etc., someone has mentioned this. As soon as I heard there was a preview, 15 chapter sampler available on NetGalley, I knew I needed to request it to see what all the hype was about. Thank you so much, Tor Teen, for allowing me this opportunity.
Now, I've never read anything by Sooz, but before you all revolt, know I have her entire Something Strange & Deadly series waiting on my shelves. I'm bound to get to them soon with how much I adored her writing style in Truthwitch! The first thing I noticed when I opened my e-galley was the map, which seemed extremely reminiscent of continental Europe - according to Sooz, via Twitter, the world is loosely based off Croatia, and Dubrovnik in particular. In the story our heroes are living during the 19th year of a 20 year peace, meaning everything is about to go wrong. Representatives from all of the nations involved descended on Venaza (seems to be Venice's counterpart), and our starring cast finally meet.
With the characters, the four main ones all were wonderful. We have Iseult and Safiya, threadsisters trying to hide their abilities, Prince Merik of Nubrevna, and then Aeduan, a Bloodwitch searching for the girls. First things first, how amazing are their names?! I've decided that Sophie is now too boring for me, and I wish I was called Safiya instead! Of these 4 characters, I honestly can't say who I preferred, and I already ship them in two couples - hopefully more will come from them, romantically, in the other half of the book.
Although there were only fifteen chapters in this sampler, there was no lacking of the action. The plot lines have already been set up for major events to come. I'm sure Tor Teen are trying to torture reviewers with where they left the action in said sampler; to call it a cliffhanger would be a major oversight. The magical system of the Witchlands, and all of the different variations of magical abilities, seemed really unique. Trust me, you do not want to get on the bad side of some of these characters, they're a tad scary.
Truthwitch is a wonderful new edition to the high fantasy world, and fully deserving of all of the hype. As soon as I get a lull in my TBR, I am going to dive into my SS&D books, as Sooz is a wonderful author! I need to get my hands on a complete copy of this book ASAP, or I think I might die (ok, maybe not, but you get the sentiment).