Hey everyone! So I’m a part of the FFBC book tour for Bree Barton’s upcoming novel Heart of Thorns (check out the full blog tour schedule here) and so I was able to read an eARC thanks to the publishers and the FFBC again! Honestly, since I first saw this book I’ve been excited for it. The synopsis dragged me in straight away with magic and dark kingdom, and recently I’ve really taken a liking to more feminist stories. Anyway, read on for my review and at the end there’s a chance to win a copy of the hardback too! (US only)
Title: Heart of Thorns
Series: Heart of Thorns #1
Author: Bree Barton
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Release Date: 31st July 2018
Source: eARC provided through Edelweiss by Katherine Tegen Books (this in no way affects my review which is honest and unbiased)
‘Inventive and heart-racing, this fiercely feminist teen fantasy trilogy from debut author Bree Barton examines a dark kingdom in which only women can possess magic—and every woman is suspected of having it.
Mia Rose wants only one thing: revenge against the Gwyrach—feared, reviled, and magical women—who killed her mother. After years training under her father’s infamous Hunters, Mia is ready. She will scour the four kingdoms, find her mother’s murderer, and enact the Hunters’ Creed: heart for a heart, life for a life. But when Mia is thrust into the last role she ever wanted—promised wife to the future king—she plots a daring escape. On her wedding night, Mia discovers something she never imagined: She may be a Huntress, but she’s also a Gwyrach. As the truth comes to light, Mia must untangle the secrets of her own past. Now if she wants to survive, Mia must learn to trust her heart . . . even if it kills her.‘
In this world, some women have powers where they can manipulate flesh, bones, breath, and blood, and this has been turned into a way for men to view them as demons, which they call the Gwyrach. Mia, our main character, has grown up believing that her mother was killed by a Gwyrach and so wants to become a Huntress. She’s been training for this when suddenly it’s announced that she has to give up training to marry the Prince, Quin.
At the wedding, events happen which lead to Quin being injured until Mia heals him somehow, thus realising that she in fact is a Gwyrach. In a slight twist Quin then wants to protect her, so they embark on an adventure together where Mia learns that everything she thought was true was in fact a lie.
I absolutely adored the language used by Bree throughout, it really helped to immerse me and to top it off even though the story is fairly dark there’s just the perfect amount of humour to it, and I always love when I find myself giggling out loud to a story! Bree’s writing was absolutely beautiful throughout, and honestly I really enjoyed the use of words such as ‘braggadocios’ because I had no idea what it meant, so I guess I feel smarter having read the book and found out! But the style in general was the perfect fit.
Mia and Quin’s relationship for the most part was adorable, topped off by our Prince being bisexual which I really loved seeing. It was in their relationship though that the humour really shone through, as soon as Quin is out of the castle he became this adorable, funny character and just such a contrast to his cold exterior prior to leaving. He came out with wonderfully sarcastic quotes like the following:
“In my royal bathtub hewn of gold, I steered small ships made of walnuts.”
Honestly, I think I loved Quin even more than Mia at times. Her character definitely had the most development though as she tried to cope with all of the changes, and I’d like to believe that she and Quin would be throwing sarcastic and funny conversations at each other forever…
This isn’t a cute fantasy by any means, there are some dark parts to it but they’re necessary for showing the world as it is. The deeper, feminist, dark side to the story is revealed partly in the reasoning for why some women gain magic. It’s quite late in the book though and honestly reading about it made me pretty emotional, and I’d hate to ruin the feeling for anyone before they read it but really… you just need to read it. Trust me.
The ending will leave you begging for the next in the series. It’s such a cliff hanger that I turned the pages desperately wanting more. I don’t know when the next book will be coming out but I do know 100% that I’ll be preordering it and waiting very impatiently for it!
About the Author
Bree Barton is a writer in Los Angeles. When she’s not lost in whimsy, she works as a ghostwriter and dance teacher to teen girls. She is on Instagram and YouTube as Speak Breely, where she posts funny videos of her melancholy dog.
Check out the other stops on the FFBC blog tour here!
Those of you based in the US, I’m insanely jealous right now — Bree will be touring at the below cities so check-in if you can to grab a copy of this beautiful book and have it signed!
I already have a beautiful copy of this book in hardcover thanks to a certain book box. The cover is just gorgeous, and the spine! This is definitely one to add to your collection for both the story and beautiful cover.
And if you’re in the US…
- Prize: One hardcover copy of Heart of Thorns by Bree Barton
- US Only
- Starts: 7/24
- Ends: 8/7
Have you read this yet?
What did you think?
Feel free to leave a comment or Tweet @LuchiaHoughton!