This was a pretty good YA Fantasy book. There is also a mix of Historical Fiction and Mystery/Thriller in the book, so it’s a bit hard to categorize. There is plenty of action, elements of mythology and magic, with a touch of romance thrown in. It’s quite a mish mash.
Samantha Fox is a young woman with plans of archeological adventures until her father dies during WWI. She now lives a solitary life running an antique bookshop, restoring and selling books. One day a mysterious damaged book appears and before she’s had a chance to thoroughly examine it, some ruthless men appear intent on getting the book back. The bookshop is engulfed in flames and Sam, her former best friend and her schoolgirl crush set out on an adventure that will take them to Dublin, Ireland to stop an ancient order intent on raising the Specter Queen, who wants to wage war and destroy everything and everyone.
The book is is a quick and easy read. There were a few places that dragged a bit, but it was a fun read. You definitely have to suspend belief when you read it because the group tends to solve problems just in the nick of time and easily squeak out of trouble without injury. Samantha was a fairly well-formed character, but the rest of the characters in the book were pretty one-dimensional, especially her crush. Despite evidence that Sam and her best friend (his sister) are quite smart and capable, he routinely scolds them for taking action and demands that it’s his “job” to protect them and dictate their actions. That got old real quick. Because this is a YA book, the “romance” is very chaste and the violence is more inferred than explicitly described. Overall this is a fun, quick, easy read, but it’s probably not one that you will remember a month after you read it.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from NetGalley and Disney-Hyperion. All opinions are my own.