Title: An Enchantment of Ravens
Author: Margaret Rogerson
Pub. Date: September 26, 2017
A skilled painter must stand up to the ancient power of the faerie courts—even as she falls in love with a faerie prince—in this gorgeous debut novel.
Isobel is a prodigy portrait artist with a dangerous set of clients: the sinister fair folk, immortal creatures who cannot bake bread, weave cloth, or put a pen to paper without crumbling to dust. They crave human Craft with a terrible thirst, and Isobel’s paintings are highly prized. But when she receives her first royal patron—Rook, the autumn prince—she makes a terrible mistake. She paints mortal sorrow in his eyes—a weakness that could cost him his life.
Furious and devastated, Rook spirits her away to the autumnlands to stand trial for her crime. Waylaid by the Wild Hunt’s ghostly hounds, the tainted influence of the Alder King, and hideous monsters risen from barrow mounds, Isobel and Rook depend on one another for survival. Their alliance blossoms into trust, then love—and that love violates the fair folks’ ruthless laws. Now both of their lives are forfeit, unless Isobel can use her skill as an artist to fight the fairy courts. Because secretly, her Craft represents a threat the fair folk have never faced in all the millennia of their unchanging lives: for the first time, her portraits have the power to make them feel.
As it turns out, my TBR list for February is basically null and void. Now I’m just kind of reading books that I know won’t take long to read, and books I know I’ll like. Reading slumps suck.
Like with many of my reviews there will be some spoilers, and they will be after my initial reaction.
I’m always excited for a Fae book.
It goes back to my love of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
I really liked this book. It was a quick and fun read. Sometimes I just want a good standalone that I can read and enjoy and not have to worry about a book 2. (Though I wouldn’t be opposed to more books set in this world). I really enjoyed both Rook’s and Isobel’s characters. I liked that it wasn’t a serious read, that I could just enjoy the whimsy of the whole novel. It didn’t hurt that Rook was the ideal Fae Prince. I thought the banter between Rook and Isobel was cute and their whole relationship was a little too perfect and convenient, but again, it’s a whimsical read. I loved the imagery that Rogerson used in this book, and it made the world feel rich and made it easy to picture.
Though with that being said, I do wish that there had been a little more to this book. I enjoyed the book for what it was, but a part of me wanted more! I wanted a richer story, a little bit more world building, and character development. I think that this need for want more stems from the fact that I liked the story, and wanted to be immersed in the world even longer.
I did have some questions about the world, and some of it’s rules. I think Rogerson wanted us, the readers, to pull on Fae knowledge that we already had, and then fill in the blanks as we saw fit. Even if that is the case, it still left questions, and the story felt a little incomplete.
I definitely recommend reading this book if you just want a quick, fun, whimsical full of Fae read.
Now onto the spoiler-y section.
Bear with me, my thoughts might be a little all over the place, I know what I want to say but don’t really know how to organize it.
While I did want more from this book, I thoroughly enjoyed it. I wanted more time with Rook and Isobel. I wanted to know why it was so bad for her to paint human emotion on the Fae portraits. We are just told it’s bad, but not why. We’re told a lot of things without really getting an explanation.
In the beginning I wanted to know why the Fae realm was dying, but ultimately that was answered by the end of the book, with the acknowledgement that the Alder King had apparently gotten lazy in his super long rule. I wanted that conflict to be a little longer and more involved than it was, because it felt like they woke up the sleeping giant, and then killed him in the next breath.
As for Rook and Isobel, I liked how their relationship was pretty much insta-love. I’m kind of on the fence about insta-love, and it all kind of depends on the story and the characters. I think it works for these two because the whole story was kind of shallow without a whole lot of depth.
I’m so wishy-washy about what I wanted from this novel. I didn’t have any expectations. I had heard that it was a great book, and hadn’t really heard any negative reviews, but those opinions never altered the book. So I went in hoping to enjoy it as a good book, and I did. I enjoyed it enough to say that I wanted more of the story. I feel like I keep repeating myself, and usually that means I’m trying to convince myself that I actually did enjoy the story, but in this case I REALLY DID ENJOY IT.
Like I mentioned earlier, I wouldn’t say no to a book 2 or another book just set in this world. I think it would be interesting to see how Rook and Isobel rule the courts. I did love that little twist at the end – how Isobel – a mortal – a human – is now Queen of the Courts, and Rook her King, only because she asked him to be.
Oh! and the Crafts. I wanted to know more about the history there with why the Fae couldn’t ‘craft’ anything.
There’s that word again. More.
I promise. I really did enjoy this book.
But clearly, I just wanted more insight, lore, character building and world building.
I’m going to end my semi-spoiler-y review there, because I’m sick and tired of the word more. Just know this, I don’t regret buying, or reading this book. It’s definitely a good read, and if you love Fae, and shapeshifting princes, beautiful imagery, and interesting characters, check this book out. I can’t wait to see what Margaret Rogerson comes out with next.