The spirits of the dead do not rest.
Artemisia is training to be a Gray Sister, a nun who cleanses the bodies of the deceased so that their souls can pass on; otherwise, they will rise as ravenous, hungry spirits. She would rather deal with the dead than the living, who whisper about her scarred hands and troubled past.
When her convent is attacked by possessed soldiers, Artemisia defends it by awakening an ancient spirit bound to a saint’s relic. It is a revenant, a malevolent being whose extraordinary power almost consumes her—but death has come, and only a vespertine, a priestess trained to wield a high relic, has any chance of stopping it. With all knowledge of vespertines lost to time, Artemisia turns to the last remaining expert for help: the revenant itself.
As she unravels a sinister mystery of saints, secrets, and dark magic, Artemisia discovers that facing this hidden evil might require her to betray everything she believes—if the revenant doesn’t betray her first.
This book is amazing. From the beginning we are completely drawn in and immersed in a high stakes world. Artemisia is different from most of the Gray sisters who work with the dead; she finds it peaceful and feels as if she doesn’t bother anyone there. It’s interesting where Artemisia sees herself and where others want her, and how despite knowing what she doesn’t want, she knows she has to protect people, and the only way she can consider doing that is to go against what she was taught as a Gray sister. I love the strong female protagonists in this novel, and that most aren’t what you would expect. I love the real tribulations and fears that are shown and worked through because even though you’re in a fantasy world, there is always something that people fear or makes them uncomfortable. There were little dips and nods that reminded me a bit of Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo (last book in The Shadow and Bone trilogy).
I finished this book two days ago and while I did start this review yesterday, I needed time to put the finishing thoughts in order. This book truly touched me. I love how death was considered a part of life, and how no matter whether you want or don’t want something, sometimes the best course of action, or what makes you the best candidate to do something, is because of what you DON’T want to get out of things; that sometimes what is necessary and what you want won’t align, but it still has to be done. I would highly recommend this book, as well as the other two Rogerson books I’ve read, An Enchantment of Ravens and Sorcery of Thorns. I feel as if I lost something great by finishing this book, and it will take something truly amazing to be able to pick up from here.
Star rating: ✯✯✯✯✯
Dreams will become nightmares…
To take her place as rightful queen, Malin Strom stands by the side of the Nightrender and his guild of thieves in the fight to take a throne she never wanted. Now, as warriors from distant kingdoms answer their call, a new battle begins.
But when dark fae side with the Black Palace, Malin and Kase are forced to take drastic measures if they are to have a hope for victory: forge an unwilling alliance with a cruel sea fae, draw out a cursed beast they thought long dead, even risk the lives of everyone they love by twisting the memories of fate itself.
For Kase and Malin, this fight could be their hard-fought salvation…or a vicious end to everything they love.
Welcome to the final stand in the Eastern Kingdom. Where the stakes are higher, the battles are darker, and the romance is spicier. A wicked spin on Cinderella comes to a head in the final battle of thieves and kings.
This book had everything! Adventures, risks, stakes! Seeing all of the characters relationships develop and deepen was amazing; the characterization and depth thereof is one of Andrews strong suits for sure. Getting to see more of the characters we know and love from our first three books as well as how they become very tightly knit with Malin and Kase was brilliant and super sweet. I absolutely loved seeing Lumpy’s friend once again. The writing in this was absolutely superb. Even when you thought you knew everything and all the marks, there was still a couple of chapters where everything appears turned about and it really threw me for a lark in the best possible way.
I cannot wait for this series to continue and as I got towards the end I thought, if it didn’t continue with a story for Ari I’d be quite upset so I’m super excited to get to hear more about our former rebel king and current Northern ambassador; I’m only sad I must wait until February to read more!
Star rating: ✯✯✯✯✯
Comedic fantasy adventures of a luckless goblin who always comes off looking like a hero when he just wants to be alone.
Earlier this year (in October) I was allotted the opportunity to read a yet to be properly published book titled Grinless the Goblin. Grinless the Goblin is a fantastical adventure for any who have found themselves put out by how things are not going their way, and how when you are down on yourself, you may still be the best thing around to others, and the saviour you didn’t want to be. Grinless is a very easy to empathize with character, a goblin that seems to constantly be in trouble, who goes on great adventures.
The quality of this story isn’t something you would expect from a new author; both a completely modern and relatable story told with a fairy tale flair that makes you wonder if you’ve discovered something unpublished by the Grimm Brothers or a secondary tale in the realms of The Princess and the Goblin but with more adult humour. I was definitely enthralled with the life of our goblin friend and found him both hilarious and endearing. Once this book is fully published, I fully intend to suggest everyone reads it.
Star rating: ✯✯✯✯✯