Source: Edlweiss/Margaret K. McElderry Books – I received this book in exchange for an honest review. I received no compensation.
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Series: Chantress #1
Edition: Egalley, 336 pages
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Purchase: Amazon/ Barnes & Noble / Book Depository*
*I receive a small monetary kickback from Amazon purchases
Chantress is a story of magic, intrigue, secrets and oppression. Lucy is thrust quite unexpectedly in the middle of a struggle between the Lord Protector and those who are tired of being oppressed and subjected to the horrors he inflicts. She finds that she’s a rather important piece in the game and she begins a journey of discovering just who she is.
I love that this story takes place in London, but it’s a sort of alternative history kind of angle. We get to see the Tower of London and it’s history twisted into a sinister use. I also loved the who concept of singing magic, which while not entirely new to me it is different enough that I always find myself drifting towards it when it pops up. The Proven magic and Wild Magic were explained wonderfully and I found myself wanting to hear the call of the Wild Magic. She made it sound so free and so seductive, that I could understand the pull that Lucy felt. I loved that it seemed to have a mind of its own. I will say that I wish I had more of a chance to see her work the magic during the book. There was a lot of detail into her practicing but I would have loved to see more of the song-spells truly worked.
I liked Lucy. She’s a sweet girl with her head in the right place, she is rather meek at times but she has a surprising stubborn side that I wish we’d seen more of. She’s also a hard-worker and while it doesn’t exactly please her to sit and learn for long periods of time, she’ll do it and she’ll work as hard as she can to get the results she wants. Nat was also a nice character, he offset Lucy nicely. He’s polite (normally) and rather smart, but he was too stubborn at times. I liked that it was something he had to work on and that despite their rough start they started to come together more toward the end. There is no insta-love here! In fact the romance is very small compared to the story and it’s nice to have a book where the relationship develops in the background. I’m hoping to see it develop more in the next book. Lady Helaine was so hard to like…she’s so mean! She’s a great teacher in the fact that she gets results, but she throws out insults like their candy and I felt horrible for Lucy.
The overall feel of the book is dark and there is a sense of overall danger hovering over the pages, thanks to the Lord Protector. It felt a bit like a race to see how much Lucy could learn in the period of time given to her. With the way that the book ended I’m really curious to see what Amy Greenfield has in store for us, because I honestly have no idea! Chantress is an interesting mix of magic and historical elements that turned out to be an enjoyable and fun read. I see the potential for a great series.
I received this in exchange for an honest review.