Title: An Enchantment of Ravens
Author: Margaret Rogerson
Rating: ★★★☆☆ (3.85 Stars)
Release Date: September 26, 2017
“But isn’t absurdity part of being human? We aren’t ageless creatures who watch centuries pass from afar. Our worlds are small, our lives are short, and we can only bleed a little before we fall.”
This book combines everything you love about fae with the uniquely magical element of human Craft. An Enchantment of Ravens is a stunning debut about the indistinguishable beauty and horror of star-crossed love and the power you find in having a choice. Isobel is a master portrait artist, whose Craft is coveted by all of Fae kind. When Isobel paints mortal sorrow into the eyes of the elusive Autumnland prince Rook, she finds herself in a danger she could never have anticipated. Taken to stand trial for her misdeeds, Isobel and Rook grow closer as they begin to rely on each other to survive the threats lurking in the forest.
Things I Liked
LOOK AT THIS COVER!!! I mean it’s gorgeous.
Godfly was easily my favorite character. He perfectly embodied the fair ones that existed in this world. I always liked him, but I never fully trusted him. He was super engaging and kept me on my toes! And I loved his relationship with the different characters we meet in the story. He just has a vibrant personality that created this presence in the story that was inescapable.
Fae are some of my favorite fantasy creatures. I don’t think I’ve ever met a fair one incarnation that I didn’t love, and An Enchantment of Ravens was no different. I loved how their magic and glamours operated, and their dark and vengeful nature. I liked the mythology: their aversion to iron, their compulsive manners, their desire for beauty in all thing. There wasn’t anything really original to her Fae mythology, but it never felt dull. Just give me all the fae stories!
Now to a really original element I loved! I thought the whole concept of human’s Craft, and it’s use as a status symbol among the fair ones was really interesting. The Craft is this great paradoxical element that is coveted by the Fae (because they are incapable of crafting the simplest things), and they imitate humans, but they are seen as far superior and eternal despite their glamoured lives filled with only illusions. It was just really interesting and wonderful. There are some great displays of Isobel’s Craft later in the story that I really loved as well.
“All at once my chest swelled with unnameable longing, an ache lodged at the base of my throat like an unvoiced cry. Lives to be lived awaited me out there, far from the safety of my familiar home and confining routine. The whole world waited for me. I felt pierced through with longing. Oh, if only I were the type to scream.”
“And I wondered whether the stories would have gone any differently if the princesses had been the ones telling them.”
“Frankly, I had no idea how anyone knew if they were in love in the first place. Was there ever a single thread a person could pick at from the knot and say “Yes-I am in love-here’s the proof!” or was it always caught up in a wretched tangle of ifs and butts and maybes?”
Things I Didn’t Like
I wasn’t the biggest fan of the worldbuilding in the story. I felt like it took too long to explain certain elements, and other’s weren’t explained at all. The world never really felt whole to me personally and it kept me a bit removed from the story. I also would have selfishly liked more court politics in the story, because that’s always a favorite of mine.
I think that the Alder King was a bit of a let down. He felt much more like a bogeyman than an actual threat in the story, even though he was the ruler of all the Fae courts and power matched my none. He kinda just felt there. The thane fairy beasts were much more of a threat than Alder ever seemed to be.
For most of this book I just didn’t care. I wasn’t really invested and I didn’t connected to the main characters. Like I said above, Godfly was my favorite character and I felt like Isobel and Rook were just nothing special. Not bad, or even underdeveloped characters, just forgettable. This led to your standard fantasy romance, that underwhelmed me. Even with the high stakes and life-threatening nature of their romance, it never felt epic to me. I knew exactly how their relationship would play out.
This was kind of a weird reading experience for me, because I felt like I couldn’t read more than a chapter or two at a time (they were a tad bit long). My mind would just start drifting. I didn’t feel the compulsive desire to consume the book like I expected. While it took me longer than I would have liked to get into the story, it really started to pick up around the halfway point for me. I loved so many of the elements of the story, and they came together beautifully. It created a vibrant world of determination, love, and magic. An Enchantment of Ravens is the perfect book for all your Fae and #fallaesthetic needs.
I received a copy of the book from Margaret K. McElderry Books/Simon & Schuster via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. All quotes are taken from an unfinished copy and subject to change.