Audience: YA fantasy, a little language, some romance, violence
Length: 300 pages
Author: Margaret Rogerson
Publisher: McElderberry Books
Release Date: September 26th, 2017
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads
A skilled painter must stand up to the ancient power of the faerie courts—even as she falls in love with a faerie prince—in this gorgeous debut novel.
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. 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—and that love violates the fair folks’ ruthless laws. Now both of their lives are forfeit, unless Isobel can use her skill as an artist to fight 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.
IT WAS CUTE.
I had seen this book floating around bookstagram for the gorgeous cover. So this became a total cover buy since it was created by one of my favorite artists.
We had some of the typical trope characters, a cocky fae-prince and a human girl. They were a pretty funny pair. I found myself laughing out loud on occasion. I’m a sucker for anytime a fae interacts with the human world. They say the darndest things.
“I was merely astonished that so many tools of your Craft can double as armaments. Is there anything you humans don’t use to kill one another?”– Rook, referring to a skillet (which made me think of Rapunzel from Tangled)
There is definitely instant love in this book. But what I found as sort of it’s own dissection of the concept, Isobel realizes how ridiculous it is that she thinks she’s fallen in love so quickly. She was a true real human. Discussing how filthy she felt, the pimple on her forehead made her much more relatable and I was thinking, yeah girl same, that does suck.
My biggest issue was pacing. It’s a standalone so I understand the need for a bit of a rush. There was so much time spent on details that the story was getting shoved forward quicker than necessary. Pretty prose is nice, but I personally prefer when more time is spent on the scene, not the trees surrounding the scene. I was hoping for a deeper story line.
Overall audience notes:
- Young adult fantasy
- A little bit of language
- Violence: swords, some gore
- Romance: a somewhat intense-ish make-out, kisses