Monday 10 May 2010

WIntercraft by Jenna Burtenshaw

Review Copy: Headline. Published 13 May 2010
From Amazon: Ten years ago Kate Winters’ parents were taken by the High Council’s wardens to help with the country’s war effort. Now the wardens are back...and prisoners, including Kate's uncle Artemis, are taken south on the terrifying Night Train. Kate and her friend Edgar are hunted by a far more dangerous enemy. Silas Dane – the High Council’s most feared man – recognises Kate as one of the Skilled; a rare group of people able to see through the veil between the living and the dead. His spirit was damaged by the High Council’s experiments into the veil, and he’s convinced that Kate can undo the damage and allow him to find peace.The knowledge Kate needs lies within Wintercraft – a book thought to be hidden deep beneath the graveyard city of Fume. But the Night of Souls, when the veil between life and death is at its thinnest, is just days away and the High Council have their own sinister plans for Kate and Wintercraft.

I found myself completely captured by this novel and was immersed in it from the beginning. I loved the premise, the characters and the writing. It all felt very exciting! I wasn't sure what to expect from any of the characters or situations and it felt fresh and very different from anything I have read before. Perhaps this is due to my limited experience with 'straight' fantasy reads - but as an introduction to the genre I found this one superb.

At first I was disappointed the story wasn't written in first person with Kate as the narrator, but as time went on I was glad this was not the case. I really enjoyed the way we were able to see the story unfold from the different character perspectives. This gave much more insight into each of the characters and their motivations. I loved Kate from the beginning. She seemed strong and wilful yet kind and loyal. I enjoyed taking the journey with her. Edgar was interesting but I wasn't sure what his true interests were - but that added to the mystery of the novel. As for Silas Dane, I think he has to be one of my favourite character creations. I didn't know whether to hate him or love him. You could practically feel his presence radiate from the page - I couldn't wait for his scenes and loved his interactions with Kate.

I found the whole story to be compelling and I loved the end. I raced through the final pages of the book not wanting the story to come to an end but desperate to find out what happens. I would love to revisit these characters so I am really hoping this is the first in a series. There is definitely the potential to take it further and I know I would, without a doubt, be first in the queue!



So Many Books, So Little Time said...

I've even more excited to read this now! Thanks for the great review, Sammee!

Luisa at Chicklish said...

Oh, wonderful review! It's great to hear how much you enjoyed it.

Sheila (Bookjourney) said...

Oh wow - the cover captured me but your review blew me away and I am heading to my online library to request this book now.

Anonymous said...

Ok I completely want to read this one now!! I hadn't heard much about this one and it sounds fantastic. I'm so glad you reviewed it!

prophecygirl said...

Fab review - I enjoyed this one too. I'm so glad everyone loves Silas!

Oh, and it is a series :)

Lauren said...

I really liked this too, and Silas was definitely my favourite character. He's awesome. Fab review!


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