Title: An Enchantment of Ravens
Author: Margaret Rogerson
Publisher Info / Release: Margaret McElderry, Simon & Schuster / September 26, 2017
Source: ARC from KT Literary
Rating: 4.75 / 5 *’s
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 among them. 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, violating the fair folks’ ruthless Good Law. There’s only one way to save both their lives, Isobel must drink from the Green Well, whose water will transform her into a fair one—at the cost of her Craft, for immortality is as stagnant as it is timeless.
Isobel has a choice: she can sacrifice her art for a future, or arm herself with paint and canvas against the ancient power of 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 received this book from KT Literary for free in exchange for an honest review! Thank you so much for the opportunity to review such a highly anticipated novel!
If you’re wanting a break from series, then this book is for you. It’s a stand alone which seems so different lately since nearly everything I’ve been reading is part of a series! But let me tell you, this is one book you won’t want to miss. And the only reason why I docked it .25 from receiving a perfect score is because I wanted MORE. I’ll get into that in a few.
An eternal summer meets a hint of autumn. Margaret did such a great job building the world of Whimsy. In fact, everything about the fae in this story is different than fae that we’re used to right now. It’s more of the traditional take, I think. I can only imagine the research that she did in order to get all of the details just right. Personally, I didn’t know much of the more classic details of fairies / fae, so it was very interesting to see that side of it! Not being able to eat human food or touch some of their craft like iron was fascinating.
We meet Isobel who is an amazing painter and all the fae want a ‘taste’ of her craft. As in the synopsis, Rook – the Autumn court prince, comes to Whimsy for the first time in a very long time in order to get his portrait done by Isobel. Even though the time passes quickly (we only have the one book, remember?) the plot moves along quite beautifully as the painting is taking place. And speaking of the painting, there’s so many technical descriptions (both in the beginning of the book and later on) that show the work that it takes to get raw painting supplies instead of what we’re used to just going out and buying. But then after all the painting is done, the two are parted and it’s kind of bittersweet. The painting is whisked away to the Autumn court and everything returns to as it was.
Or does it?
As on the back cover, she accidentally paints sorrow in his eyes so Rook is taking her to the Autumn court to stand trial.. From here we go on a beautiful journey (literally beautiful because Margaret did some of the most descriptive writing that I have read in awhile) in order for her to pay for her crime.
Every piece of information that we learn about both Rook and Isobel, I gobbled it up instantly because it added more depth in such a limited time frame. More powers are shown from Rook’s standpoint and all the creatures he can transform into – the Raven, of course, being my favorite. There was more about Isobel that I would’ve loved to learn, especially a HUGE detail at the end of the book, but I think her personality shined through. It was obvious that Isobel felt like she was going against what is true to herself but she still embraced everything that was happening. As did Rook, which you’ll find out more once you read the book. They were both conflicted and it was great to see how they both handled it and continued on. It was heart wrenching at times but there were funny moments as well.
There were a few loose ends towards the end of the book that could have been wrapped up a bit more and it did feel like the ending came rather quickly. But all in all, you know what happens and changes from the turn of events. Do I think there could be a follow up book? Yes. Do I want more about Rook and Isobel? Absolutely! But I don’t think we necessarily need another full length book unless it’s from another generation or something. I mostly wanted more information about the ending and a little more time after that.
I can’t wait to see what other stories Margaret comes up with because this was such a beautiful book from the cover to the story to the writing. It looks little but you’ll be surprised at how much is packed in! (But seriously….that cover!)
Make sure you pre-order this book guys! From the second I read the synopsis, I knew that this would be one of my most anticipated books of the year. And I cannot thank KT Literary enough for sending this to me! I feel absolutely lucky to have gotten it.