The last book I read was Seven Faceless Saints by M.K. Lobb.
I’m currently reading March & Feather by Emma Saska.
And I plan to read A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking by T. Kingfisher next!
Seven Faceless Saints is a newly released YA fantasy that follows two main characters. Roz is a disciple of Patience, but she’s also a part of the brewing rebellion. Damian, her childhood sweetheart, is a young war veteran and the youngest captain in the history of Palazzo security.
Roz and Damian team up to solve a string of unsolved murders, even if they are both still heartbroken and at odds with one another…especially after Damian’s father had Roz’s murdered.
What I liked:
I love the dark atmosphere and the worldbuilding. The setting, the city of Ombrazia, is Italian-inspired, which works so well considering Ombrazia’s citizens worship saints. Lobb’s descriptions really set up the city as dark and gritty, but with moments of beauty.
I enjoyed the core of both Roz and Damian’s characters. I’m a sucker for YA characters with tragic backstories that dictates their every move! Roz is hard-headed and angry, and Damian is a soft boy who struggles with PTSD from his time at war. Lobb’s characterization of Damian is especially impactful; it really shows the horror of war and how it impacts young men.
I’m also always down for a fantasy plot that centers around a murder mystery!
What I didn’t like as much:
Roz and Damian are full of ANGST. I love me some angsty teens, but I feel like this only worked well in the first half of the book. By the time I got to the second half, their explosive interactions felt as if they were going in circles, and their rollercoaster emotions gave me some whiplash. It’s a little too repetitive and over-the-top, even for me, and ends up overshadowing the rest of the story.
As for the saints themselves, the different groups of disciples remind me of the different factions in Divergent. I think part of the reason why is because we only get the bare bones of the religion. I need to know more about the saints and how the disciples’ magic works; I want to learn more!