For the Wolf has a lot in common with Lakesedge:
✔️A self-sacrificing man who is seen as a monster to the outside world, but who is only trying to control the environment around him—the environment that is also a part of him
✔️ A run-down estate/castle surrounded by dark, creepy woods
✔️ A slow-paced story of a strong woman attempting to learn how to control her magic
Which of course means that I loved it! I’m always, always a sucker for an atmospheric read with lyrical writing and creepy woods. And this book has so many depictions of dark woods come alive with earthy magic.
Although For the Wolf is being marketed as YA fantasy for some reason, I would describe it as a new adult, romantic fantasy, as Red, the main character, and her twin sister, Neve, are twenty-years-old.
Red is the Second Daughter of the Queen of Valleydan, which means that she must be sacrificed to the Wolf of the Wilderwood. She’s been told all her life that the Wolf is a monster who is keeping the world’s captured gods from returning. But when she finally meets the Wolf, a man named Eammon, she realizes that what she’s been told is a lie. Meanwhile, stuck as the Princess, Neve, the First Daughter, is doing everything in her power to get Red back from the Wolf, even if it means upending her own world.
As much as I loved this book, I will admit some flaws I noticed while I was reading. While Lakesedge’s magic and worldbuilding is clear, For the Wolf’s worldbuilding is a little hazy. I enjoy slow-paced books, but a lot of answers about the magic system came a little late. We also get short chapters, called Interludes, from Neve’s perspective. And I’ll be honest: I wasn’t really interested in her chapters. However, based on the ending, I think her POV will work well in the sequel.
While the romance is very similar to that in Lakesedge, I do think it was more fleshed-out and better written in For the Wolf.
All in all, if you liked similar books, such as Uprooted and The Wolf and the Woodsman, then you might enjoy this one, too!
TW: Self harm for magic use (cutting), blood and mild gore, parental death, religious abuse