Reading Level: Young Adult
Size: 288 pages
Release Date: September 9, 2014
Stand Alone or Series: Stand Alone
Source: eGalley from NetGalley.com
Rating: 4.5/5 stars
I loved White’s Paranormalcy trilogy and was curious to see what White would come up with next. This was a very well done historical fantasy with a lot of magic in it (one of my favorite types of stories). It was an engaging story that I really enjoyed reading a lot. This is a stand alone book and I was sad to hear that no sequel is planned.
Jessamin has recently moved from her island home of Melei to country of Albion. She wants to go to school in Albion and get her degree but hates how the women of Albion are treated as inferior to men. She is struggling to make ends meet but it doing alright; until she draws the attention of the wrong man. Finn is a charming nobleman but when Jessamin gets involved with him she is introduced to a whole new world of magic in which she ends up playing a part she never wanted to play.
I really enjoyed the characters, the world, and all of the magic in this story. Jessamin is a wonderful character. She is smart, determined, but also a little starstruck by some of the things she is introduced to in Finn’s world. I loved that mostly she made smart decisions and that she was very resourceful. Jessamin is dealing with issues of racism (residents of the island Melei are seen as second class citizens) and with sexism (in Albion women are treated as less than men). It brings up a lot of interesting societal issues, even if they are issues we have seen in stories time and time again.
Finn was another wonderful character: funny, mysterious, swoon-worthy, vulnerable, and full of wonderful secrets. I really enjoyed his character a lot.
I love historical fantasies filled with magic, so it was easy for me to love this book. The magic system could have been explained better, but I enjoyed it all the same. I also really enjoyed the setting of Albion and the contrast between the cultures of Albion and Melei.
This was a quick read and very engaging. There is mystery, magic, and a sweet romance between Finn and Jessamin. I loved the witty dialogue between the characters and I loved Jessamin’s spirit. This was one of those books that wasn’t anything spectacular but was just generally well done. It made me smile while I read it and I enjoyed everything about it.
Things are tied up nicely at the end of the story. Although I would really love to read more about this wonderful magical world.
Overall a very well done historical fantasy by White. This was very different from her Paranormalcy series, but in the end I actually liked this book better than that series. I would recommend to those who love light-hearted historical fantasy with some mystery and romance.