by Naomi Novik
I wanted to include both covers, because both covers are beautiful and perfectly depict parts of the story with!
Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for a chance to read this book in exchange for an honest review!
Published : 19th of May 2015
“Twisted into nightmares, beasts to hunt their own kind. That’s all the Wood left of that people. There’s something worse than monsters in that place, something that makes monsters.” Loc 3735
Author: Naomi Novik
Published by: Pan Macmillan
Book: Stand Alone
Rating: 5+ Voodoos
Agnieszka loves her valley home, her quiet village, the forests and the bright shining river. But the corrupted wood stands on the border, full of malevolent power, and its shadow lies over her life. Her people rely on the cold, ambitious wizard, known only as the Dragon, to keep the wood’s powers at bay. But he demands a terrible price for his help: one young woman must be handed over to serve him for ten years, a fate almost as terrible as being lost to the wood. The next choosing is fast approaching, and Agnieszka is afraid. She knows – everyone knows – that the Dragon will take Kasia: beautiful, graceful, brave Kasia – all the things Agnieszka isn’t – and her dearest friend in the world. And there is no way to save her. But no one can predict how or why the Dragon chooses a girl. And when he comes, it is not Kasia he will take with him. From the author of the Temeraire series comes this hugely imaginative, engrossing and vivid fantasy novel, inspired by folk and fairy tales. It is perfect reading for fans of Robin Hobb and Trudi Canavan.
It’s hard to even begin thinking of a way to review Uprooted in a way that will do it justice and express just how much I loved it. I still feel a little dazed and find myself blinking away the strange waking feeling I have. It’s almost as though I’ve been in a deep trance for such a long time and have finally broken free only to look at the world as though it has dulled in my absence. This stories an all consuming delight that holds all the familiarity of a beloved fairytale.
Uprooted was full of magic, power, deceit and betrayal, as well as understanding, love and devotion… all those things that are completely necessary to make the most amazing fantasy stories. It had a beautiful fairytale like quality that lulls you into a false sense that everything will be alright. This only makes each betrayal and revelation more profound, more devastating, more draining. I fell so completely under the spell of this book that I found myself drawn to it like the characters were drawn to the Wood. I dreamed about it, I thought about it, and as my poor husband will tell you, I talked about it none stop. I’d be lying to say that I didn’t try to sneak it into the office and read it under the table at work. I was bewitched, ‘corrupted‘ and I didn’t care.
The heroine, Agnieszka, is so full of spirit. She may doubt herself from time to time but she always steps up to a challenge and faces the world with courage and determination. Her relationship with Kasia was wonderful. They were true friends. Their friendship faced many trials and always came out stronger. The Dragon (Sarkan) wasn’t overly likable, especially at the beginning but he grew on me.
I went into this thinking it would be some sort of Beauty and the Beast meets Repunzel retelling, but its so much more than that! Its more powerful and poignant than anything I’ve read in ages! I really don’t want to say too much more because I think its a journey everyone needs to experience without any spoilers. Just know that you won’t be disappointed!
Just please, if you can, read this! It’s easily the best book I’ve read, so far, this year!
Next up… The Invasion of the Tearling My year just gets better and better. YAY!