I’ve been really into fantasy romance lately! I recently finished 3 more, here are my thoughts.
Into the Heartless Wood by Joanna Ruth Meyer
This was the first book I read off my 2021 five star prediction and I definitely was not disappointed!
This is a whimsical, dark, and beautifully written fantasy romance that follows a world that is being overtaken by an evil forest. The forest is haunted by a witch and her 4 tree siren daughters who lure and kill anyone who enters the forest. But when one of the tree sirens meets a young boy who lives on the edge of the woods, she begins to question whether or not evil is something you are or choose.
This book explores what it means to be human. There are many “evil” characters in here but somehow the author weaves a backstory to make you sympathize with all of them.
I absolutely fell in love with the dual perspective and stylistic choices that author made for each perspective. The writing was so immersive and kept me flipping the page for me.
I was completely swept away by the romance and magical world. This book definitely gets a brutal so trigger warnings for scenes of war and death. But the ending was beyond beautiful and brought tears to my eyes. I honestly can’t rave about this book enough.
I can’t wait to check out Joanna Ruth Meyer’s backlist and everything she releases in the future!
Graceling (Graceling Realm #1) by Kristin Cashore
Wow I totally understand all they hype surrounding this book/series now! This was absolutely fantastic!
I’ve been wanting to pick up this series for ages but these stunning new covers and the release of the 4th book finally pushed this to the top of my TBR. And I’m SO glad I finally picked this up. I was immediately sucked into this world and fell in love with the characters. I loved the way Kristin Cashore developed the characters and made you fall in love with each and everyone one of them – even side characters that didn’t receive much page time!
I LOVED this romance (I’d heard nothing but amazing things and for good reason!) There is just something spectacular about a romance stemmed from wanting to kill each other. It hits differently and I’m all about it.
The stacks felt high throughout the entire book and I was anxious along with the characters on how the evil king would be brought down. The only reason this didn’t get a full 5 star is because I thought the conclusion felt kinda anti-climactic. One second the villain is there and then next it’s over. It both worked and felt a little underwhelming.
I’m SO excited to read more from this world! I can’t wait to see what the next 3 books bring.
The Witch’s Heart by Genevieve Gornichec
Wow. What a beautifully and flawlessly crafted story. Genevieve Gronichec pulled me into this lush Norse myth world and held me captive there from start to finish.
I will start this off by saying I knew literally nothing about Norse mythology going into (beyond what’s in the movie Thor 😅). And it didn’t hinder my enjoyment in any way. Gornichec makes this world so accessible and immersive and I never felt like I was lacking any knowledge of the world.
And it also meant that everything that happened was a shock! Since I didn’t know any of the lore, I didn’t see any of the actions coming. This very closely follows the actual myths of Loki, so if you’re familiar with those, this may not be quite as shocking to you as it was to me.
Loki was everything I wanted and so much more. I could read about his crazy antics forever. The romance was between him and Angrboda was great. I loved their banter and wit. Their love was far (far) from perfect but it was just so wonderful to follow. And the relationship with Skadi was even more amazing.
This book is extremely character driven but the characters are so fantastically created and complex. Everyone is flawed and layered and feel like real people (or creatures). I was so in love with each of their stories.
This just had everything I was looking for – romance, grey morality, Loki shenanigans, political maneuvering, magical creatures, and big battle conclusion. If you like mythology, definitely move this to the top of your TBR!