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. (Goodreads)
I really wanted to love this book. What possibly sounds better than a fantasy that centers around 2 female best friends that are witches? Nothing! This book was so hyped and I can proudly say I didn’t fall prey to the hype. However, I did finally manage to read it and guess what? Another unpopular opinion coming at ya. There are few people who feel the same way I do about this book, so I might as well go ahead and say it. I didn’t love it. Even after the clunky beginning, I just can’t say it was the adventure I thought it would be. Even the friendship was a missed opportunity. I felt like I was told Safi and Iseult were best friends and I was supposed to just believe it rather than read about it. In truth (ha! see what I did there…) they had very few friendship moments.
This book was a complete struggle to get through if I am being honest. I liked Safi and Iz and the idea of their friendship even though I expected more from them. I liked the magic and the idea of the adventure but this book was just so darn confusing. None of the magic was explained well either. In theory, it sounds cool but how do people become a witch? Are they born that way? Is it hereditary? How many types of witches are there?
Basically, Safi is on the run and Iz goes were Safi goes. Things happen along the journey but none of it was interesting or made me want to continue reading. The only reason I did want to continue reading was because everyone said it got better. It did I suppose but it was definitely too little too late for me.This book tried to do too much too fast. There’s a big world full of countries that are so vastly different from one another. There are too many characters and you never know which ones are going to be important. And there’s a bunch of overlapping plots that don’t make any sense to the rest of the story….maybe they will later. The biggest flaw is nothing happened. At all. Seriously I felt like Safi was on a ship fleeing a bloodwitch, Iz was injured the whole time and they arrived at their destination. Nothing felt dangerous or adventurous. I felt like I read a bunch of nothing.
The premise is there for a great story, and this is just the beginning, so hopefully it gets better and things actually happen. I doubt I will be moving on with the series because this just feels like one of those great ideas that will never get fleshed out.
“It wasn’t freedom she wanted. It was belief in something—a prize big enough to run for and to fight for and to keep on reaching toward no matter what.”
― Susan Dennard,