“London, 1880, and eighteen-year-old Luke Lexton is about to endure his initiation into the Malleus Maleficorum – the secretive brotherhood devoted to hunting witches, and the organisation that will help Luke take revenge on the witch who murdered his parents. His final test is to pick a name at random from the Book of Witches, a name he must track down and kill within a month, or face death himself.
Luke picks out sixteen-year-old Rosa Greenwood, a witch-girl living in rapidly fading grandeur on the west side of town. She’s the last bargaining chip in her family’s struggle to avoid bankruptcy and is about to be married off to the handsome, cruel, grotesquely rich Sebastian Knyvet – a powerful member of the Ealdwitan.
As Rosa and Luke get to know each other, Luke realises it will be impossible for him to kill Rosa, just as Rosa knows she will bring disgrace on her family if she does not marry Knyvet. But Knyvet is hiding dark secrets – including the key which will unlock the mystery of Luke’s murdered parents. Torn between appeasing their elders and their love for each other, Rosa and Luke must each make their choice between life and death.”
Firstly I’d like to thank the publisher for sending me this book to read and give an honest review. I loved the Winter Trilogy by this author (my reviews here) so I was really excited to be starting on her new series. It turned out to be very different from her previous books but it was just as captivating.
The beginning was fascinating as I found out how Luke became involved in witch hunting. I also learned about Rosa and her life which wasn’t what I had been expecting at all. The two of them faced many difficulties in their lives and following them as they tried to figure things out was a real treat. There were a couple of moments that I found difficult to read as an animal lover but it was something that I was able to see past.
The author created a wonderful, historical, atmosphere with her descriptive writing – there were times when I felt like I was right there in 1880 alongside Luke and Rosa. I admit that it was obvious where the storyline was going but it didn’t matter to me because I enjoyed the journey anyway.
There was a little bit of everything in this book: romance, witchcraft, danger and history too. The end left me wanting more so I can’t wait to see where Luke and Rosa find themselves next!
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Released 2 January 2014…