Author: Susan Dennard
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult
My Rating: 3 stars
Truthwitch is a book full of shifting alliances and plans laden with trickery; of strong friendships and longtime grudges. Safi and Iseult have been inseparable for a very long time, but things are unfolding in their lives that they would have never expected, and for once in their lives they have no idea what the future holds- only that they will stick together through it all.
– strong focus on friendship, sea foxes, gorgeous ball gowns and glamourous parties
– stones that can take away your pain, stones that light up when the people bonded to them are in danger, magical wells of power
– not enough happened in the plot for my taste, magic system wasn’t expanded upon enough
One of my favorite things about this book was the friendship between Safi and Iseault; they are threadsisters, and are connected by a bond that makes them family. Their opposite personalities make it so they compliment each other in every situation- where Safi is prone to quick action, Iseult relies on thinking things through, and together they make a very formidable team. They have learned to solve problems together and to fight together, and they rely on each other through a bond of total trust. A seemingly normal conversation or message between Safi and Iseult could carry a whole subtext that no one besides them would ever detect or understand.
“Because ‘just me’ isn’t who we are,” Iseult hollered back. “I’ll always follow you, Safi, and you’ll always follow me. Threadsisters to the end.”
A fierce, burning need rose in Safi’s lungs at those words. She wanted to tell Iseult everything she felt—her gratitude, her love, her terror, her faith, but she didn’t. Instead, she smiled grimly. “Threadsisters to the end.”
The magic system was just unique enough to hold my interest and had many different aspects to it, but I would have appreciated a more clear picture of what the constraints and limitations were. While the friendships and relationships between the characters played a large part in this story, I did find the character depth a little lacking and wished that I could have found myself caring about each individual character a bit more. The chemistry between Safi and Merik was perfect; I loved how the picked on each other and were always in an unspoken competition, but that this didn’t overshadow the friendships and the story in general.
“Merik’s posture turned stony, but at last he offered a resigned sigh—and when Safi strode around the table, he stayed firmly in place. Though his shoulders did rise to his ears, and Safi didn’t think she imagined how quickly his breaths came.
“Relax,” she muttered, bowing over the contract. “I’m not going to bite.”
“Has the feral lion been tamed, then?”
“Look at that,” Safi purred, sharing her most feline sideways grin. “It has a sense of humor.”
Throughout the story there were hints that more was going on behind the scenes that we weren’t privy to, and I knew revelations would follow as the narrative continued. Although most of it played out how I expected, I was still pleased with the direction the story took and how it affected each of the characters and their paths. I had a general feeling throughout that the story was lacking something, although I’m not sure what that something was. The plot felt too contained and I wanted more to happen. With this being the first book in the series, I do see potential for the series to get better from here, and plan to continue onto the next installment with the hope things will pick up and my interest will grow from here.
“For once in her life, Safi had carved her own path.
She had played her own cards and there’d been
no one to guide her hand but herself.”