As 2017 quickly winds down I am feverishly trying to write up reviews for the remaining books currently sitting in my scheduled posts.
Next on the docket is a book that was all over Booktube, Bookstagram, and Gooodreads over the past several months, care to wager any guesses? It’s An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson.
Did I enjoy Rogerson’s debut novel, An Enchantment of Ravens? Keep on reading to find out my thoughts and opinions.
An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books (September 26, 2017)
Print Length: 300 pages
Audiobook Length: 8 hrs 45 mins
Narrator: Julia Whelan
Isobel is a prodigy portrait artist with a dangerous set of clients: the sinister fair folk, immortal creatures who cannot bake bread, weave cloth, or put a pen to paper without crumbling to dust. They crave human Craft with a terrible thirst, and Isobel’s paintings are highly prized among them. But when she receives her first royal patron—Rook, the autumn prince—she makes a terrible mistake. She paints mortal sorrow in his eyes – a weakness that could cost him his life.
Furious and devastated, Rook spirits her away to the autumnlands to stand trial for her crime. Waylaid by the Wild Hunt’s ghostly hounds, the tainted influence of the Alder King, and hideous monsters risen from barrow mounds, Isobel and Rook depend on one another for survival. Their alliance blossoms into trust, then love, violating the fair folks’ ruthless Good Law. There’s only one way to save both their lives, Isobel must drink from the Green Well, whose water will transform her into a fair one—at the cost of her Craft, for immortality is as stagnant as it is timeless.
Isobel has a choice: she can sacrifice her art for a future, or arm herself with paint and canvas against the ancient power of the fairy courts. Because secretly, her Craft represents a threat the fair folk have never faced in all the millennia of their unchanging lives: for the first time, her portraits have the power to make them feel.
I don’t know about you, but when I read An Enchantment of Ravens I couldn’t for the life of me wrap my head around the fact that this is Margaret Rogerson’s debut novel. First, the way Rogerson was able to string sentences together was like reading the Mona Lisa. Beautiful and mysterious, Rogerson’s descriptions of the world and the characters have been vividly imprited on my mind, hopefully for years to come. To be honest, I can equate reading An Enchantment of Ravens to visiting an old friend. You know who they were when you knew them but you eagerly anticipate seeing who they have become since you last spoke.
It is at this point that I feel I have to disclose the fact that I picked this up partially because of the gorgeous cover and partially because it was blurbed by a many a blogger and booktuber as a dupe of sorts to Sarah J. Maas’ A Court of Thorns and Roses series. Like Sarah J. Maas’ novels, An Enchantment of Ravens follows the story young woman, in this case Isobel, as she navigates the trials and tribulations of the Fae world, however, this is pretty much where the comparison stops.
Isobel is thrust into the world of Fae after she paints human sorrow into a portrait of a Rook, the prince of the Autumn court. As human emotion is seen as weakness, Rook informs Isobel that she is to stand trial before the Fae for her transgression. Yes, there is a touch of insta-love as Isobel and Rook trek through the land of Fae, but it is slow enough to be believable, with each finding more than enough reasons why their feelings should not be acted upon.
I absolutely loved the character of Isobel. She was a heroine that knew what she wanted, regardless of the consequence. She wasn’t scared to speak her mind, whether it be because Rook was being egotistical, or because she saw a different way of getting out of their predicament, she was an action girl through and through.
The only reason I couldn’t give this novel five stars is because of it being a standalone. While being able to devour a book cover to cover knowing that it is whole is nice and all, this world and the characters in it were just too interesting to be a one off! I hope that Rogerson returns to her world at some point in her writing career.
Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.