I recently read An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson and fell in love with the story. I admit I love books dealing with the fae, I always have. As a child I was fascinated with elves and fairies. However having them in a book isn’t guaranteed to make me like it. I found the world of the fae in this book charming albeit tragic. This is one of those books that will definitely stick with me for a while. This book gets 5 stars from me and it’s one I would recommend to fantasy lovers who are looking for stories dealing with the fae from a human perspective.
A skilled painter must stand up to the ancient power of the faerie courts—even as she falls in love with a faerie prince—in this gorgeous debut novel.
Isobel is a prodigy portrait artist with a dangerous set of clients: the sinister fair folk, immortal creatures who cannot bake bread, weave cloth, or put a pen to paper without crumbling to dust. They crave human Craft with a terrible thirst, and Isobel’s paintings are highly prized. But when she receives her first royal patron—Rook, the autumn prince—she makes a terrible mistake. She paints mortal sorrow in his eyes—a weakness that could cost him his life.
Furious and devastated, Rook spirits her away to the autumnlands to stand trial for her crime. Waylaid by the Wild Hunt’s ghostly hounds, the tainted influence of the Alder King, and hideous monsters risen from barrow mounds, Isobel and Rook depend on one another for survival. Their alliance blossoms into trust, then love—and that love violates the fair folks’ ruthless laws. Now both of their lives are forfeit, unless Isobel can use her skill as an artist to fight the fairy courts. Because secretly, her Craft represents a threat the fair folk have never faced in all the millennia of their unchanging lives: for the first time, her portraits have the power to make them feel.
I found the world in this story to be very vivid. The author did a great job of building the world and bringing it to life. World-building is so important in fantasy books and I often see it fall flat, but this book did a bang up job of it. I’ll be honest I recently also read The Cruel Prince by Holly Black, but I preferred the fae world of An Enchantment of Ravens. While Holly Black made her fae world dark, cruel, and tragic, there’s a little bit of charm and humor is in the fae world in this story. Don’t get me wrong, the world is still tragic and dark, but touches of humor lightened up the story at the right moments. The parts dealing with Isobel’s painting and human craft also made the world stand out instead of blend in with other fae books I’ve read. In short if you want a unique take on the fae world, give this book a read.
I loved the characters in this story. Without giving away specific spoilers Isobel has a big choice to make in this and I was afraid her romance with Rook would change her mind, but she stuck to her guns and I admired that. In general I enjoyed the take on immortality and human mortality in this book. At first the romance felt too sudden at the beginning, but over time it became more believable. Romance is usually what I have an issue with in books since I like my romance believable, but once the book passed the beginnings of the romance I was satisfied with it.
The plot itself hooked its claws into me right in chapter one and wouldn’t let go. This is one of those books that kept me up reading way too late because I didn’t want to stop. I’m excited to see what the author writes next and will have her on my watch list. I can’t recommend this book enough.