Robin’s predecessor has disappeared, and the mystery of what happened to him reveals unsettling truths about the very oldest stories they’ve been told about the land they live on and what binds it. Thrown together and facing unexpected dangers, Robin and Edwin discover a plot that threatens every magician in the British Isles—and a secret that more than one person has already died to keep.– GoodReads
What an awesome debut novel!
There was some great world-building, fantastic characters, and awesome magic. What more could a reader want?
I found myself completely enthralled with this book, BUT, it did take me a while to get to that point, I want to say I wasn’t super invested until about 30% in. It’s a bit slow going and I enjoy world descriptions but even then it was a tiny bit slow. For me. Could be perfectly fine for most.
I liked Edwin and Robin very much and Marske is clearly a very talented writer. I will say i didn’t expect the scenes to be as spicy as they were but that’s more of an observation than a complaint. (On the whole I’m not a super romance fan so it did take me a little by surprise but I have nothing against steamy scenes).
Edwin is surly and complex, Robin is, on the surface, carefree, and charming. They make for a great dynamic it’s the sort of pairing I generally like. I will say however we got to know both of them so well beneath that surface level and that’s not something you always get in a first novel of a new series (trilogy? Quartet? Duology? Idk).
I know a lot of other readers felt there was more plot and world-building than character interaction from skimming other reviews but I actually felt it was quite the opposite. I loved hearing about Edwin and Robin but I was constantly wondering what in the world was happening about the plot itself. The thing they’re trying to take care of was pretty easily resolved in the end and it felt almost like it didn’t matter it’d been so simple by the time it was ‘fixed’ and the main plot kind of withered away at the end for me. Due to all of that, it’s why I held back on giving it 5 cups of coffee. I’m just a plot and world-building driven reader. I was super interested in knowing more about magicians in their political roles in the ‘normal’ world, more about the Barrel and the families. More about the lore, so maybe next book!
Overall clearly a series that’s going to be a lot of fun and capture so many readers.
Thanks so much to the publisher and NetGalley for an eARC of this in exchange for my honest review! (Happy Pub day!)