ARC Review: Truthwitch (The Witchlands #1) by Susan Dennard10:00
Series: The Witchlands #1
Author: Susan Dennard
Published January 14th 2016 by Tor
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.
See my review of the preview edition, here.
I received an Advance Reader Copy from the publisher. This in no way impacted on my view.
After reading the preview edition, provided by the US publisher via NetGalley, I was desparate to read more. When I found out the UK publisher would also be allowing bloggers the chance to review the book, the complete book, I immediately jumped at the chance.
If you haven't read my review of the preview edition, basically what happens is: we meet the protagonists, Safiya, Iseult, Merik, and Aedeun. All four characters were ones I loved in different ways, and I couldn't pick one whom I enjoyed most. Even after reading the complete book, I'm still struggling to chose a favourite. Each character has their own strengths, and flaws, and they seem so different to each other. I know that in some books with different points of view, the characters can sort of all melt into one, but not in Truthwitch. Furthermore, though they were all apart of the same storyline, they also had their own little plots that were running parallel with the bigger story.
One thing that Sooz has perfectly done with this book, is write amazing female characters. Each and every woman, from Safiya, to Evrane, to Ryber, was strong, powerful, and just a little bit vulnerable. They may seem to be the perfect women, but they're just as flawed as any person can be - and that makes them even better.
From the very start of the book, I could see romance brewing between the characters, and I'm so unbelievably happy with how this played out throughout the whole story. I've discovered a new OTP, and could not stop grinning when they shared scenes. Now, I'm not one to normally get emotional at books, but I definitely felt a whole range of 'feels' when reading Truthwitch. It's a book that will stay with me for a long time, and has given me a major book hangover.
Each chapter was as interesting as the last. When the preview edition ended at chapter 15, we were left with a major cliffhanger, and from that point on the action just jumped to a whole new level. There were twists and turns on every page, and I was gripped to the edge of my seat until the very last moment. Some things I could guess were coming, but others came so out of the blue, I was in shock. I can easily see that the events in Truthwitch will be crucial to the plot of the entire series, and what seemed massively important now, may only be a small blip on the bigger picture.
Dennard has definitely created a world which is full of action, intrigue, and magic. I'm so overjoyed that I was able to read this copy, (thanks, Tor) and am slightly sad that I'll have to wait so long for book 2, Windwitch! Like I said in my preview review: Truthwitch is a wonderful new edition to the high fantasy world, and fully deserving of all of the hype. You seriously need to read this book, I know it will be one of the best 2016 books!