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Posted December 4, 2012
Warning: Upon finishing this book, you may experience feels.
I don't just mean the kind of feels where you're sad that you finished a good book, or that you wish something else had happened, or that you loved it a lot. I mean the kind of feels you feel at the end of a good season finale, where you're screaming and wanting more and half crying because there was a lot of drama and awesome and you just don't know how to handle yourself.
If you can't tell, False Covenant meets all the expectations I had going into it, and then some.
I adored Thief's Covenant; I had an overwhelming sense of pride when one of my review quotes was chosen for an ad for it; I've been recommending it to all of my friends who love fantasy. The characters, the world, the plot -- all of it was amazing.
False Covenant was just as amazing.
Widdershins is one of those characters - and False Covenant is one of those books - that will imprint on your mind for a lifetime. She's clever and snarky and impatient and rash and sneaky and just a beautifully well crafted character. Olgun? Fantastic. We never hear from him except for what we get from Widdershins, but you can't help but love him.
The plot in this was absolutely stunning; I'm going to keep this review spoiler-free, but it's just as fast-paced as the first one with even more twists and turns. I love not knowing how this story was going to end.
And let me tell you, I was shocked at how it ended. I started yelling at my book - the first time I had in ages, and much to the alarm of my roommate - before devouring the last few pages. It's an ending that had me shocked and hurting and proud and confused and man, oh man, do I need the next book now.
I should also mention that all of the other characters are equally as fantastic to read about as Widdershins, especially considering the book occasionally derails to follow their stories -- the only book to do that that I've actually enjoyed, rather than keeping it focused to one point of view. Renard makes me giggle; Robin makes me proud; and Julien? I'm not sure if I want to be him or marry him.
If you're a fantasy lover and you haven't read this series, you're missing out on one of the best young adult fantasy series to come out in the past few years. Ari Marmell's characters, plots - everything is fabulous. Pick it up now.
And for non-fantasy lovers who are looking into dabbling, this is a brilliant place to start. It's not all magic and flashy battles -- there's a level of realism to the characters, to the setting, even to the plot to an extent, that I'm absolutely in love with.
Posted August 17, 2012
Of the two Widdershins novels, The False Covenant is, by far, my favorite. I’ve decided that I want Widdershins as my friend. Seriously! I absolutely loved her in this book. And her loyalty never ceases to amaze me.
The False Covenant was a darker, creepier read than its predecessor, Thief’s Covenant. In The False Covenant we are re-introduced to the characters that we know and love *cough* Renard *cough*, and are also introduced to new characters and new evils.
The False Covenant picks up six months after Thief’s Covenant. After the death of her best friend, Genevieve, Widdershins is struggling to keep The Flippant Witch tavern in business and finds herself still indulging in her past time of thievery to help supplement the income. During a routine stake out, Widdershins finds herself confronted with a dilemma. Help her fellow thieves, led by a sneaky man who goes by the name Squirrel, in stealing items during an Aristocrat party? Or help out the Guard, most especially her favorite guard of them all, Julien Bouniard from injury and/or death? Widdershins conscious gets the better of her and gains more trust from a soon to be ally, but in turn has her own “kind” plotting against her. Oh, Widdershins.
Not only does Widdershins have to worry about the wellbeing of the tavern, a new foe has come to town seeking revenge for past crimes made by none other than Widdershins. Add in a supernatural being stalking the streets of Davillon, who at first seemed harmless enough, but has progressed into something straight out of a nightmare. Can those who uphold the law and those who make a living breaking the law, work together to rid the world of a being even feared by Widdershins’ god, Olgun?
This book was … awesomesauce! It was a creepy read that was completely full of action and humour. I’ve always loved Widdershins’ humour, but in The False Covenant, she is more witty, more of a smart ass and … seriously I want her for a friend! She is such a strong female heroine that is easily likeable and full of surprises.
Author, Ari Marmell’s world building in The False Covenant topped Thief’s Covenant. The world came alive all around me. I loved that it wasn’t just Widdershins needing to run and hide from the law…she faced her foes dead on in this installment. I found that this story made me appreciate Widdershins even more now that she really doesn’t have to do everything on her own.
The supernatural being, of which was loving called “Iruoch” was scary as all hell! I mean, there was no delicacy when it came down to the description of this character, and the carnage that he brought forth on the citizens of Davillon. He was a walking, talking nightmare that I could clearly picture in my head, thanks to Mr. Marmell’s unbelievable description. The way in which he described Iruoch’s voice, as being that of man and child together, was eerie AND I could totally hear it and hear the unseen giggling children. GAH! I was freaking myself out!
And let’s not forget Renard. Oh sweet, sweet Renard who we now know is the Shrouded Lord unbeknownst to Widdershins. He is such a true gentleman and his wit and humour made me fall head over heels for this guy. (But in my head, the Renard that I crush on does NOT have a moustache…just sayin’) I personally am hoping that Widdershins and Renard end up together…but who knows!
Go to chapter-by-chapter(dot)com to read more of the review!
Posted June 13, 2012
Can we just talk about how good this book series is for a little bit? And how it seriously needs to be read by more YA readers? The fact that this book series is so unknown is shameful; Ari Marmell successfully balances clever humour, horrific villains, a plucky young heroine in a delightful, charming new favourite.
I adored the first book in this new series, Thief's Covenant, but I'm in awe of Ari's ability to craft an even BETTER sequel to an already outstanding book! Everything I loved about Thief's Covenant was there, just amped up a notch or two; whether that was romance, terror, poetic writing or action. It's all there and it's all incredibly satisfying & enjoyable!
Reasons to Read:
1.Fun romance... that isn't overdone:
While Thief's Covenant only HINTS at some blooming romantic feelings, False Covenant is where we finally get to see it acted on (not all of it - I won't spoil who's involved!) The complications which arise from it are so painful and the consequences devastatingly real... yet all are perfectly appropriate for the story, I can't deny that. It's impossible NOT to care about these characters <3
2.A writing style specific to an author:
I actually tend to like this when author's do this, but I enjoy reading books when an author has their own specific style of writing that stands out from other authors. Ari's definitely one of those authors who has such a distinct way of writing that appeals to me as a reader. In his Widdershins books, this easily comes across as a witty, precocious young woman with a poetic writing style which works so well for the mystical, creepy ambiance of the book/fantasy world.
3.Dark, horrific villainry:
I can't stand it when an evil villain doesn't meet my expectations; I find too often that the bad guys turn out to be incredibly lame and rather mundane. But mundane doesn't exist in Widdershins books. Not one bit! Ari's familiarity with writing horror novels comes across so well in his descriptions of the villains Widdershins comes face to face with; which are such truly terrifying ideas, with graphic descriptions that just come alive right off the page that they're some of the best creations I have ever read in a book. Ever; it's completely brilliant!
4.Mystery, action, fighting, secrets!
It's refreshing to read a fantasy book where the author has clearly invested a large amount of time and thoughtfulness to establish such an interesting setting for an equally fascinating story; and even rarer when you find a story that holds both the setting and story to such high standards and both come across as extraordinarily well done. And the fighting scenes are so good, they completely grab (and hold) your attention.
5.A delightful fantasy world:
I love the different aspects of fantasy which are incorporated in these books; the religious aspect of the series is extremely important, and the mythology created for the various gods and goddesses and their role in public life is so intriguing. And the way that magic & mysticism are semi-related, yet still separate add to this mysterious facet of the world.
Thief's & False Covenant are some of the masterpieces of YA. I'll be quite content if Ari continues to bless us all with lovely fantasy works like this one (more please)!
But honestly, why are you reading my review for False Covenant when you should be reading the book?
ARC received from publisher for review. (review abridged due to posting limitations)
Posted August 16, 2012
No text was provided for this review.