Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly feature hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.
I wanted to have a weekly feature on this blog where I talk about all the new releases I'm looking forward to reading – I had the best/worst name for it too: Worked Up Wednesday!!? But then I discovered there is a far more legitimate weekly feature that already exists in the book blogging world, and that feature is the less charmingly named but more universally recognized "Waiting On Wednesday." So, officially, this feature will be called that – but just know that I'm still referring to it as Worked Up Wednesday in my head.
This week, I'm talking about TRUTHWITCH by Susan Dennard.
Title: Truthwitch (The Witchlands #1)
Author: Susan Dennard
Publisher: Tor Teen
Publication date: January 5, 2016
Summary (via Goodreads):
On a continent ruled by three empires, some are born with a “witchery”, a magical skill that sets them apart from others.
In the Witchlands, there are almost as many types of magic as there are ways to get in trouble – as two desperate young women know all too well.
Safiya is a Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lie. It’s a powerful magic that many would kill to have on their side, especially amongst the nobility to which Safi was born. So Safi must keep her gift hidden, lest she be used as a pawn in the struggle between empires.
Iseult, a Threadwitch, can see the invisible ties that bind and entangle the lives around her—but she cannot see the bonds that touch her own heart. Her unlikely friendship with Safi has taken her from life as an outcast into one of reckless adventure, where she is a cool, wary balance to Safi’s hotheaded impulsiveness.
Safi and Iseult just want to be free to live their own lives, but war is coming to the Witchlands. With the help of the cunning Prince Merik (a Windwitch and ship’s captain) and the hindrance of a Bloodwitch bent on revenge, the friends must fight emperors, princes, and mercenaries alike, who will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.
I've had the opportunity to read a preview of the book, and I think this one is going to be really good (and not just because I'm on the street team, hah!). In the 15 chapters I've read, I've noticed a few things...
1. Susan Dennard puts so much care into crafting a story.
She knows every single thing about the world she's built – the history, the magic, the language, the political strife... even the best (and worst) place to grab a cup of coffee. And she knows each of her characters like the back of her hand: Iseult and Safi and Merik and Aeduan and Uncle Eron and Prince Leopold and Alma – their backgrounds, their insecurities, their joys... It's very clear to the reader that there's more to each of these people than what's printed on the page – that they're all complex and multi-faceted and just compelling. It's impossible not to turn the page.
2. Susan Dennard has said that she loves a slow burn romance, and it shows.
I cannot wait to read more about Iseult and Safi and Merik and Aeduan as they get to know each other – they're all fascinating in their own right, and I want to see how they (and their relationships, whether romantic or not) grow and change over the course of this book. Susan Dennard is good at writing moments and interactions that feel powerful and intense and a little bit steamy and a little heartbreaky, and I'm looking forward to seeing more of that in Truthwitch.
3. Characters with diverse backgrounds and stories!
I am particularly excited about this!!! Listen, you've got a main character who is an outcast, part of a nomadic group that represents the lowest rung of society; another main character who comes from nobility but has a dangerous secret and shirks expectations through her bravery and love of adventure (and trouble); a handsome hot-tempered prince whose nation is in poverty; and a monk and assassin with questionable morals... And those are just the main characters! Let's not forget Safi's alcoholic military strategist uncle, or Iseult's annoyingly perfect but unexpectedly fierce childhood friend!
So many interesting pieces to this story and so many things to anticipate. And here's a bonus for you – if you preorder by January 4, you're eligible to receive a free signed bookplate and double-sided poster with your order. (First 2000 preorders and available in US/Canada and UK only, though.) You can read up on all the details at TheWitchlands.com.