4 starsthe-reader

If you’re reading this, then maybe you know
you ought to read everything. And maybe
you know you ought to read deeply. Because there’s
witchery in these words and
spellwork in the spine.
And once you know to look for signals in the smoke,
for secrets in the sea, then you understand what it is
to read. This is a book. You are the reader. Look closer.
There’s magic here.

And so begins this utterly fascinating book, about….a book. What?! A book about reading and a book? C’mon! You had me at Hello….:-)

I really enjoyed this book and look forward to reading the next book in the series. It starts out a bit slow, and the worldbuilding isn’t very in-depth, but the story had me hooked from the start. It has plenty of action, magic, evil villains, assassins, young heroes…. and “good” PIRATES! Who doesn’t love a pirate with a heart of gold?

Sefia is a young girl on the run. She was brought up in isolation by her parents and Aunt Nin. When the story begins her mother is already dead, her father has been murdered and she’s on the run with Aunt Nin. When mysterious assassins kidnap Aunt Nin, Sefia takes off after the kidnappers intent on helping rescue Nin. She has no idea who took Nin or why, the only clue she has is the rectangular bundle she escaped her home with. She soon discovers that it is a book. A book that may hold the answers to her questions. Though reading and books is unheard of in her world, all knowledge and stories are passed around orally, Sefia slowly teaches herself to read during her search for Nin.

One day she runs across a group of Impressors – men that capture young boys for the fighting cages. They have a young boy held prisoner in a box and Sefia boldly helps him escape. The young boy has deadly fighting skills and lots of scars, some you can see and many you can’t. Because he can’t speak, Sefia names him Archer. The pair set off on a mission to find Nin and determine why young boys are being captured and ordered to fight to the death. The journey takes many twist and turns, and the duo get help in unexpected ways. The book ends on a very satisfying cliffhanger that leaves the reader wanting more. I recommend you read this book!

4 stars