Synopsis: In a continent on the edge of war, two witches hold its fate in their hands.
Young witches Safiya and Iseult have a habit of finding trouble. After clashing with a powerful Guildmaster and his ruthless Bloodwitch bodyguard, the friends are forced to flee their home.
Safi must avoid capture at all costs as she’s a rare Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lies. Many would kill for her magic, so Safi must keep it hidden – lest she be used in the struggle between empires. And Iseult’s true powers are hidden even from herself.
In a chance encounter at Court, Safi meets Prince Merik and makes him a reluctant ally. However, his help may not slow down the Bloodwitch now hot on the girls’ heels. All Safi and Iseult want is their freedom, but danger lies ahead. With war coming, treaties breaking and a magical contagion sweeping the land, the friends will have to fight emperors and mercenaries alike. For some will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.
I had to take a few days to compile my thoughts on this book before writing my review… This book is everything that I didn’t know I needed. Dennard has created some characters that will stay will me forever. Each character in the novel held a special place in my heart and I love each of them for different reasons. I think the character that I treasured the most is Iseult the Threadwitch. Not only do I love her character and background but her witchery is one that I can totally hang with. Just the concept of a Threadwitch is so utterly intriguing to me.
The relationships in this book were easily the best part of the book. I truly appreciated the relationship among Safi and Iseult. I think I told Eden (since she has already read this book) I wasn’t going to finish the book if one of them died when the climax was building. I do like the difference in character relationships and the main comparison I can bring to this book is between it and Six of Crows. Both Bardugo and Dennard really focused on the relationships among the characters, while Bardugo melded the whole group together, Dennard focused more on the individual relationships between the characters. Both authors just did a phenomenal job showing just how the relationships worked between all the characters and it was a beautiful sight. The relationship between the Bloodwitch Aeduan and Evrane is what ultimately brought me around to not detesting Aeduan… (also have to throw in a little Iseult “life-debt” action for that 180 though!)
I’m not sure why, but I found myself not being able to give it a full 5-star rating, it fell just short at 4.5. I can’t exactly put my finger on why it didn’t make it into my 5-star book list but I think it may be because it felt awfully drug out. There was a lot to learn and Dennard took a little while going through it in the beginning of the novel. I would have preferred the main story line to move a little quicker than it did. Overall, I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoys strong female leads and fantastically magically worlds!