I received Truthwitch by Susan Dennard via the monthly book subscription Uppercase Box. To say I was excited to have a signed copy in my possession is an understatement. I couldn’t wait to dive in.
In a continent on the edge of war, two witches hold its fate in their hands.
Young witches Safiya and Iseult have a habit of finding trouble. After clashing with a powerful Guildmaster and his ruthless Bloodwitch bodyguard, the friends are forced to flee their home.
Safi must avoid capture at all costs as she’s a rare Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lies. Many would kill for her magic, so Safi must keep it hidden – lest she be used in the struggle between empires. And Iseult’s true powers are hidden even from herself.
In a chance encounter at Court, Safi meets Prince Merik and makes him a reluctant ally. However, his help may not slow down the Bloodwitch now hot on the girls’ heels. All Safi and Iseult want is their freedom, but danger lies ahead. With war coming, treaties breaking and a magical contagion sweeping the land, the friends will have to fight emperors and mercenaries alike. For some will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.
First, the author appears to be besties with my favorite author Sarah J. Maas, which is the reason I was anticipating this title (the fact it was YA Fantasy helped too) because she recommended it during a signing I attended, and boy was it worth it.
This novel opens up a world filled with different types of witchery, or powers, as well as a complex social system that impacts the life of the two main characters and threadsisters, Safi and Iseult. I loved their relationship. The dynamic between Iseult’s calm strategic mind and Safi’s fiery impulsion made for an exciting duo in a story filled with adventure and danger. The focus on their friendship was heartwarming and I loved their dedication to each other. Their friendship seemed a bit too perfect so I am hoping to see how Iseault and Safi deal with conflict with each other in the next book.
Safi was my favorite character, hands down. I’m a sucker for a compulsive, foul-mouthed badass heroine and Safi is just that. Furthermore, Safi is evenly matched in love interest, prince and wind witch, Merik. Their relationship had the slow burn from dislike to falling for each other but I loved how they had more important things to concentrate on. For Merik, it was saving his people and for Safi, it was finding herself and exploring her loyalties. The progress between them was slow but the payoff was like hurricane-force winds. I’m still swooning over that epic kiss.
Another intriguing part of this story is the dangerous blood witch, whose loyalty is up in the air, and the idea that Safi and Iseult might be the prophesied pair that will save the witchlands. There was a satisfying ending but there were a lot of loose ends to tie that I’m hoping we’ll see in the sequel.
STARS: 4.5 out of 5