7 February 2020

ARC Review // The Will and the Wilds & Woven in Moonlight

Title: The Will and the Wilds
Author: Charlie N. Holmberg
Publisher: 47North
Published: 21st January 2020
Pages: 268

A spellbinding story of truce and trickery from the Wall Street Journal bestselling author of The Paper Magician series.

Enna knows to fear the mystings that roam the wildwood near her home. When one tries to kill her to obtain an enchanted stone, Enna takes a huge risk: fighting back with a mysting of her own.

Maekallus’s help isn’t free. His price? A kiss. One with the power to steal her soul. But their deal leaves Maekallus bound to the mortal realm, which begins eating him alive. Only Enna’s kiss, given willingly, can save him from immediate destruction. It’s a temporary salvation for Maekallus and a lingering doom for Enna. Part of her soul now burns bright inside Maekallus, making him feel for the first time.

Enna shares Maekallus’s suffering, but her small sacrifice won’t last long. If she and Maekallus can’t break the spell binding him to the mortal realm, Maekallus will be consumed completely—and Enna’s soul with him.

In The Will and the Wilds, Enna is attacked by a misting, creatures that come from The Deep, and finds herself making a bargain with Maekallus, a misting himself. As  a Narval, Maekallus is a soulless being  that will do whatever it takes in exchange for a kiss - a kiss that will feed him with a human soul. Bound together, something goes terribly wrong and Enna and Maekallus must work together to save her soul and his life. Entwined together, their adventure begins - a dangerous adventure to save themselves that might end up breaking their hearts.

"The mortal realm will devour a misting body. The monster realm will destroy a human's mind."

The Will and the Wilds is an enchanting and marvellous story, which reminded me of a dark and whimsical fairy tale. As a matter of fact, it did remind me of my favourite fairy tale, the Beauty and the Beast - a human and a monster falling in love, the strange girl who loves stories and lives with her father as an outcast. I quite liked that Enna did research on the mistings in hopes of having her investigation being published in an academia ruled by men.

Title: Woven in Moonlight
Author: Isabel Ibañez
Publisher: Page Street Books
Published: 7th January 2020
Pages: 384 

A lush tapestry of magic, romance, and revolución, drawing inspiration from Bolivian politics and history.

Ximena is the decoy Condesa, a stand-in for the last remaining Illustrian royal. Her people lost everything when the usurper, Atoc, used an ancient relic to summon ghosts and drive the Illustrians from La Ciudad. Now Ximena’s motivated by her insatiable thirst for revenge, and her rare ability to spin thread from moonlight.

When Atoc demands the real Condesa’s hand in marriage, it’s Ximena’s duty to go in her stead. She relishes the chance, as Illustrian spies have reported that Atoc’s no longer carrying his deadly relic. If Ximena can find it, she can return the true aristócrata to their rightful place.

She hunts for the relic, using her weaving ability to hide messages in tapestries for the resistance. But when a masked vigilante, a warm-hearted princess, and a thoughtful healer challenge Ximena, her mission becomes more complicated. There could be a way to overthrow the usurper without starting another war, but only if Ximena turns her back on revenge—and her Condesa.

Inspired by Bolivian politics and history (which I'm ashamed to say that I did know nothing about before picking this novel), Woven in Moonlight follows Ximena, the girl everyone believes to be the Condesa, who only wishes to become herself after years of pretending.

"They follow because of Catalina, my future queen, my best friend, the sister I never had, and the only person left living who knows the real me."

To protect her people, the Illustrians, Ximena is forced to leave them for The Ciudad Blanca to marry their vicious leader, Kind Atoc. In Atoc' world, Ximena finds herself in a dangerous places where nothing is what it seems and is forced to question her beliefs - she is forced to understand that the world is not black and white. Needless to say, I quite enjoyed Ximena's character growth. However, what I loved the most about Isabel Ibañez's debut novel were the descriptions: the world building, the tapestries woven by Ximena and the delicious food, such as silpancho and yuca frita.

Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher/author for providing me with a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

1 comment:

  1. I love both these covers! They're so so pretty!!
    I'm particularly curious about The Will and the Wilds if it gave you B&B vibes! I love Beauty and the beast-esqe tales!

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