A Beautiful, Dazzling, Feminist Read!

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jillian_selwyn Avatar


Thank you to Penguin Teen and those that put together the YA Soiree at YallFest 2022 for this stunner of a book!

I sort of had to straight up message Kate J. Armstrong over instagram to tell her how much I was loving this book at just 25% of the way through and how it was inspiring me to get back to my writing. This book screams everything I needed for the moment in my reading adventures and I don't even know if I can explain why. There was one or two moments where I was a little iffy or unsure, but then relatively quickly the book fixed that for me and I loved it all over again.

The descriptions were fabulous, and I loved the connections between Matilde, AEsa, and Sayer. I also really appreciated how the twist of their being a fourth of them and who it was was pulled off and the varying reactions and not accepting each other as sisters right away but instead out of necessity, working together to save lives. I absolutely loved the idea of the underground tunnels and more women with extraordinary magic, and those were other moments with enchanting and spellbinding descriptions that I absolutely had to take pictures to remember the pages since I didn't want to put the book down to write them down.

Nothing really ever felt info dump-y or without reason, and I really loved seeing Sayer reflect on not noticing Fen when she thought she was, and I love the inclusion of Sayer and Fen's relationship as well! So many fun and shocking twists and turns throughout and such exquisite and atmospheric writing I don't even know how to compose myself knowing most people won't get to even touch this book for another three months. I really wanted to try to keep this as spoiler free as possible but clearly that's not happening - so in Nightbirds fashion: "dash it all..."