My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Received: Hachette Book Group
Publication Date: June 2nd, 2015
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 11+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Fantasy, Witches, Action
The magic and suspense of Graceling meet the political intrigue and unrest of Game of Thrones in this riveting fantasy debut.
Your greatest enemy isn’t what you fight, but what you fear.
Elizabeth Grey is one of the king’s best witch hunters, devoted to rooting out witchcraft and doling out justice. But when she’s accused of being a witch herself, Elizabeth is arrested and sentenced to burn at the stake.
Salvation comes from a man she thought was her enemy. Nicholas Perevil, the most powerful and dangerous wizard in the kingdom, offers her a deal: he will save her from execution if she can break the deadly curse that’s been laid upon him.
But Nicholas and his followers know nothing of Elizabeth’s witch hunting past–if they find out, the stake will be the least of her worries. And as she’s thrust into the magical world of witches, ghosts, pirates, and one all-too-handsome healer, Elizabeth is forced to redefine her ideas of right and wrong, of friends and enemies, and of love and hate.
I just want to start by saying this: With all due respect to the book, there is nothing about it that comes close to the greatness that is the ‘‘Game of Thrones’’ series OR ‘‘Graceling.’’
It’s not as complex (‘‘Game of Thrones’’) and definitely not as magical (‘‘Graceling’’), but it is not devoid of qualities.
Far from it. ‘‘The Witch Hunter’’ is a book that reads very, very easily. It’s also easy to care for the main character, Elizabeth, because she has such a strong, present voice.
She cares about everything that goes around her, including the people, so ‘‘seeing’’ the world-building through her eyes is not a bad experience.
She is a little bit careless, a little bit fearless and a little bit crazy (who breaks their own bones on purpose???). So definitely not perfect. That’s okay, though, because the first pages made it clear that this would not be the type of serious fantasy novel that would inspire a thousand others.
Witches are my favourite creatures. I find them fascinating. They control elements, hey. They do magic. They unleash unimaginable forces into the world. Clearly, they are badass. So I was definitely attracted by the presence of witches in this book. Oh and Elizabeth is a witch hunter. Oh yes. When she started mingling with witches, I was like, ‘‘Mouahahahaha.’’
I was surprised, but also delighted, by the small amount of romance, because I’m extremely tired of romance being such a huge deal in YA fantasy novels. I’m not saying there aren’t romantic scenes, but they are limited and the romance progresses slowly, contrary to everything else. Yay.
It’s not the best fantasy series you’ll ever find. I think I’ve made that clear already. However, the storyline is so easy to follow, making this the perfect read if you want your daily dose of fantasy but don’t feel like putting too much effort into the reading part (or picking something with 600+ pages). It’s pretty straightforward but manages to surprise the reader at some places still.
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