Truthwitch by Susan Dennard is a new YA fantasy that has been majorly hyped over the last months and I’m happy to report that I do think it deserved it! Take a cool magic system and combine it with a plot based on two friends instead of a romance, and I’m a pretty darn satisfied customer. If you enjoy your fantasy with lots of action and magic, definitely give this new series a try.
Note: I received an advanced copy of Truthwitch from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.
Truthwitch by Susan Dennard (The Witchlands #1)
Published by Tor Teen on Jan. 5th, 2016
Genres: Fantasy, YA
Page Length: 416 pages
How I got my copy: Publisher
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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.
- With the emphasis on romance in YA stories these days, it was a serious breath of fresh air for me to realize that the main relationship is between two girls who are the best of friends and will fight to the death for each other. I can just imagine high school girls starting to call each other Threadsisters as this series gets big and it makes me so happy.
- The magic system in Truthwitch is pretty complex and interesting. There is basically every kind of magic you can imagine, but individuals are limited to one type of magic skill such as water, air, blood, truth, or seeing the threads every human gives off via their emotions. I enjoyed seeing how different specialities could be used to solve problems and what additional and unexpected skills a witch might have as their power develops.
- In addition to our kick butt female pair of heroes, there is also an older female mentor! So often this sort of character would be male since they need to be physically strong in a final epic battle blah blah blah, but hey look, a woman can be a master fighter and advise and help our young heroes too :D.
- You’ll get through Truthwitch very quickly. The plot is fast-paced with lots of action and the writing is quite fluid, making it easy to just keep eating through the pages. Definitely pick this one up when you want to sit and devour a book in an afternoon.
- I know lots of you enjoy a hate-to-love romance, so this is me waving flags to let you know you have that to look forward to ;-).
- You know my love for magic systems, so I hope you’ll forgive me for wishing for more details about the two girls’ particular skills. There were details about being a Threadwitch that were mentioned but never fully explained and I’m dying to know what they mean! I need a glossary or something.
- While I was mostly happy with the romance, there was a strange kissing scene where the two were still pretty solidly in the middle of the hate-to-love spectrum and I was just really not digging their decision to engage physically when they still weren’t sure of each other. It makes sense for teenagers I guess, but I wasn’t feeling it.
Truthwitch is going to be a fantasy series that everyone is going to be dying for book two. You don’t want to miss this bandwagon just because the hype has been huge; it is pretty well deserved. I suspect even readers who generally only like adult fantasy will enjoy Truthwitch given the complex magic system and world. I’m definitely looking forward to getting to know these characters and world much better in book two!
Have you read this one? What did you think? Are you excited for it if you haven’t gotten to it yet?
Truthwitch by Susan Dennard
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