Witch queen Poppy Hawkweed returns in this sequel to The Hawkweed Prophecy (2016).After the events of the last book, Poppy attempts to escape her new life as a witch queen by transforming into a swallow and migrating to Africa, though to what part of the vast continent is unclear. There, white Poppy's taken in by a medicine maker, Mma, and her dark-skinned great-grandson, Teko. Though Mma and Teko are initially portrayed as likable characters, they eventually imprison Poppy, ostensibly for her own good, as they've seen a vision that she will be killed if she returns to England. Back in England, the third-person narrative perspective shifts among characters and times. There's Poppy's birth mother, Charlock, both in the present and when she was younger, as well as Leo, Ember, and Betony, Leo's mother. Through the many lenses and back stories readers learn of Leo's conception and what became of Betony, who left the witches to have her son. Teko eventually allows Poppy to escape, and once back in England, she's bullied into taking up her queendom. But there are many twists and turns and painful betrayals to be hashed out before there's a chance of happily ever after. Though themes of sisterhood are strong, most female relationships are interrupted, if not broken, by male intrusion. The real unbreakable bond in these stories is that between mother and child. Interesting and well written but problematic in its conceptualization of a generic Africa and Africans. (Fantasy. 14-adult)
Praise for The Hawkweed Legacy:
"The real unbreakable bond in these stories is that between mother and child. Interesting and well written..."
"Readers will be eager to keep turning pages in this rousing sequel."-School Library Journal
"I remain completely thrilled by this series. I feel like the best is still yet to come."-Read by Jess
"The language is both beautifully lyrical and smartly succinct, and the high-octane action is perfectly underpinned by elemental, archetypical concerns, among them love, loyalty, friendship, sacrifice and personal identity. This series surges adrenalin levels, and quickens the heart."
Love Reading 4 Kids
"Brignull does an exceptional job developing this emotional core of the series... Readers looking for a poignant story about belonging will find this a rewarding reading experience... a beautifully written novel about magic and the ties that bind."
"The connection between the two girls is just beautiful. Brignull has given us a gloriously refreshing homage to feminine strength... The twistiness to both of these books is intoxicating...deliciously dark and schemey."-Hana Banana Reads
"Irena's writing was magnificent and skilled... poignant... a beautiful tale of family, friendship and love in an original and modern fantastical setting."
Never Judge a Book by Its Cover
Praise for The Hawkweed Prophecy:
"Wildly delightful."-Laini Taylor, author of The Daughter of Smoke & Bone trilogy
"Wise, weird, a touch evil and totally charming, Irena Brignull's tale of magic in our time is as rich and complicated as sisterhood. From the first page, I felt drawn into a modern classic."
Anna Godbersen, author of The Luxe, and Bright Young Things series
"Brignull's The Hawkweed Prophecy is a deft exploration of friendship, sacrifice, and betrayal. I can't decide who I love more, the sweet and trusting Ember or the spunky, dark Poppy.
You can't help but cheer for both girls, and ache when they are pitted against one another. I was completely absorbed in the sinister,
complicated world of magic and witches. The coven is described so confidently and beautifully, it's hard to emerge from the novelw ithout wondering if these women are operating somewhere just below the surface of our world. Full of romance, heart, and suspense, readers will find themselves staying up all night just to spend a little more time with
Ember and Poppy."-Madeleine Roux, author of the Asylum series
"Irena Brignull's The Hawkweed Prophecy is a book of wicked,
beautiful magic. Compulsively readable and delightfully gritty, one does not mess with these Hawkweed witches."-Kendare Blake, author of Anna Dressed in Blood, and Three Dark Crowns
"I loved this book! Irena has created such a beautiful complete world-our world, and nestled within it, a simmering world of magic. The Hawkweed Prophecy has everything: friendship,
desire, delicious earthy magic, secrets and spells, and at its centre,
the wonderful young Poppy, on a journey of self-discovery."-Karen Foxlee, author of Ophelia and the Marvelous Boy, and A Most Magical Girl
"The Hawkweed Prophecy was bewitching from the get-go. Irena Brignull does an amazing job weaving a tale of pure magic in this debut novel. She'll have you on a roller coaster of emotions from the very first page. Get ready to be spellbound."-Paige McKenzie, author of The Haunting of Sunshine Girl series
"Brignull...debuts with an instantly engrossing novel...It's a fantasy with the air of a classic, yet one that's also entirely contemporary in its tight focus on identity, friendship, and romance. Ages 12-up."-Publisher's Weekly Starred Review
"Brignull develops story and characters slowly, long, luxurious sentences balancing the magic and the mundane expertly and building the world of the witches by showing how out of place Ember is in it. Tension builds inexorably to the inevitable witch showdown, which brings small victories but not a happily-ever-after for all. The third-person narration switches focus from character to character as they make frustrating, heart-rending, totally believable choices. Fantasy and nonfantasy readers alike will appreciate this gritty and intriguing coming-of-age story."
"From love, lies, loss and highs, The Hawkweed Prophecy delivers it all, and you won't see any of it coming."
United by Pop
"The Hawkweed Prophecy is as beautiful inside as it is out... Irena Brignull's writing is seamless... The atmosphere is dark, haunting, chilling with a dash of sunshine and fairy tale magic."
Never Judget A Book By Its Cover
"Irena Brignull's debut novel...is a lyrical, poignant novel that examines what it means to belong, to have power, and to be a woman."
"Witchy, soulful, vibrant, mysterious."-Rachel Ashworth Writes
"I was bespelled way before the end."-Utopia State of Mind
"Action-packed from start to finish, this was the sequel that we needed."-Between the Pages
"I was entranced by the story of friendship and witchy sisterhood."
The Bookish Beagle
"Need a new series to love? The Hawkweed Legacy just released this week!"-Justine Magazine
"This beguiling magical tale and its strong female leads, full of betrayal, sorcery, and friendship, is spellbinding."-South Wales Evening Post