RELEASED: June 4, 2019
PUBLISHER: Simon and Schuster UK Children’s
FORMAT: eBook / Hardcover [AD – ARC]
GENRE: YA Fantasy
GOODREADS RATING: 4.29
All sorcerers are evil. Elisabeth has known that as long as she has known anything. Raised as a foundling in one of Austermeer’s Great Libraries, Elisabeth has grown up among the tools of sorcery—magical grimoires that whisper on shelves and rattle beneath iron chains. If provoked, they transform into grotesque monsters of ink and leather. She hopes to become a warden, charged with protecting the kingdom from their power.
Then an act of sabotage releases the library’s most dangerous grimoire. Elisabeth’s desperate intervention implicates her in the crime, and she is torn from her home to face justice in the capital. With no one to turn to but her sworn enemy, the sorcerer Nathaniel Thorn, and his mysterious demonic servant, she finds herself entangled in a centuries-old conspiracy. Not only could the Great Libraries go up in flames, but the world along with them.
As her alliance with Nathaniel grows stronger, Elisabeth starts to question everything she’s been taught—about sorcerers, about the libraries she loves, even about herself. For Elisabeth has a power she has never guessed, and a future she could never have imagined.
I jumped on this the moment I saw it on NetGalley because the blurb sounded so good! Then I didn’t read it in time, because.. you know.. I got approved a week before it’s release date.. And then it appeared this book was in the two book boxes I’m subscribed to! Although funny at first, it’s.. kind of frustrating to receive the same book two times.. Like.. Can’t the big subscription boxes communicate a bit better so this doesn’t happen? I don’t even want to know how many times it happened to me by now and it sucks. Especially since I don’t even have the time to check new releases / themes and such lately..
Anyway! You’re not here to hear me babble about subscription boxes. You’re here to read my review on Sorcery of Thorns so let’s dive in!
The one thing I immediately think of when starting this review, is the world-building. I liked the way it was done since you aren’t thrown into the whole thing and “figure it out” or “here’s half an encyclopedia to explain everything that’ll happen in the next four hundred-something pages!” No, nothing like that.
You never got too much information at once which made it easy to keep up with everything. I never felt confused or had unanswered questions for longer than necessary. That’s something on my “must”-list when reading fantasy!
As for the book itself.. How can you not adore the idea behind this novel? As a bookworm, you almost love it before having read the thing, that’s for sure. A book about books? Having live grimoires turn bad – into maleficts – when damaged? Like.. demon-like creatures?! I can totally imagine our books taking revenge that way whenever treated badly, just saying. Although I’d rather not have that demon-like thing in my home.. so let’s.. not.. But, conclusion is: I loved the idea and I loved the setting since almost all of it concerns books and / or libraries.
It was as though she were made of light and air, barely tethered to the physical world, at once unstoppable and in danger of coming apart, burning up, floating away.
Characters! My goodness! There are four characters I have to mention for various reasons, but let’s start with our main character Elisabeth. She’s fierce, unafraid of speaking up and generally pretty open-minded. The latter characteristic was somewhat surprising since she grew up in a Great Library and knew nothing outside of that – as far as I could gather, that is. You’d expect her to be timid and dependent on others but that wasn’t the case at all.
But she isn’t my favorite character. Nope. That place goes to the broody Nathaniel. Have to say, I would’ve liked him even more broodier but that’s a personal preference. Me and my broody characters, I know.. His sass though! And.. the best thing.. He’s bisexual and I. Am. So. Here. For. That. I need more bi rep for sure. MORE.
Silas, my favorite demon. I can’t help myself. We’re warned throughout the book not to care for him because.. well.. he’s a demon and he doesn’t care but that didn’t stop me. Nope. He’s helpful and supportive, even when he has absolutely no reason to be. There are some moments where his demonic nature is a bit more pronounced but overall he didn’t really feel like a demon to me. Typing this I’m actually.. not sure whether this is a good or a bad thing? I think a bit more demonic wouldn’t have hurt things though.
The fourth character is more of an honorable mention because Katrien is.. the sassy side character that isn’t present nearly as much as she should’ve been – or as I would’ve liked. Her prank-like and investigative nature sparked my curiosity so I would’ve liked a bit more of that.
It seemed that it was the rest of the world that had gone mad, not her – but if she was the only who thought so, could she truly call herself sane?
If there’s one thing I really did find bothersome at times, it’s the way certain events are skipped entirely. Things happened without us reading them. For example, you have this whole building up to a certain event. You get all the preparations and such, the characters dressing up and then.. suddenly your character wakes up after “one hell of a party” and you’re like.. “But I wanted to be there to see it too!” This is an example, not something that actually happened, just to make my point.
If you love books – if you don’t, what are you even doing here?! – and fantasy and want those two passions combined in a story for once.. This is definitely the book you need to pick up! Even more so if you like sassy and fierce characters. And if you want to start caring about a demon. Yup. Read it!
What do you think? Is this something you’d read? Or have already read?
Are there any other books out there that have a lot to do with books and are awesome? Because if so – give me those recommendations!