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 among them. 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, violating the fair folks’ ruthless Good Law. There's only one way to save both their lives, Isobel must drink from the Green Well, whose water will transform her into a fair one—at the cost of her Craft, for immortality is as stagnant as it is timeless. Isobel has a choice: she can sacrifice her art for a future, or arm herself with paint and canvas against the ancient power of 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.
An Enchantment of RavensFeatured
A Captivating Spin to Fairy Lore!
An Enchantment of Ravens is such a charming read! Took me quite a few days to finish it despite not being that long, but it's because I wanted to make it last. Every page is a wonder to go through and fans of fair folk tales will enjoy this refreshing take!
What I Loved:
I love reading YA books with fae characters, I've been a fan since I was a child, so reading An Enchantment of Ravens felt like coming home by visiting Whimsy and trailing through the spring, summer, and autumn courts! Everything is surreal and beautiful on the surface, but with many dangers lurking underneath all the glamour. I was deeply entranced by every place the characters set foot, silently mourning my inability to visit. The fae world is always intriguing to explore and Margaret Rogerson did it justice!
My most favorite thing about this book is the portrayal of the fae. There's a certain ring of truth behind the idea of the fair folk looking aged and rotten underneath the glamour that makes them look like otherworldly beautiful beings. When they die, they cease to exist as living creatures and instead go back to being part of the earth, so why shouldn't they look like it when alive without their magic to hide their true selves? Loved this aspect so much!
It's also super interesting how humans are not THAT disadvantaged when it comes to the fae. Some humans, like Isobel, have a special skill called Craft that can be for any artistic thing like cooking, painting, or writing. Fairies cannot do human craft, it is deadly to them, so they have to rely heavily on humans to acquire these goods and in exchange, they grant enchantments. However, these enchantments can go wrong and humans still have to be careful around the fae when not pleased, or else they find themselves on the end of a bad bargain. In Isobel's case, when she mistakenly paints sorrow into the autumn prince's eyes -- showing a weakness in front of those who already question his rule -- she is forced to follow the autumn prince straight into fae territory.
My goodness, I dare you to not to fall for the autumn prince. It's impossible and I need one just like Rook! A fae prince who has human emotions (when they shouldn't) and is not afraid to fight for love? All. The. Swoons. Such a fun, sassy character to meet! And he has the ability to shape-shift, with a preference for raven form. His company is precious and the banter he has with our heroine is simply gold.
Isobel is of course a great character to be around with. So talented and quick-witted when facing dire situations. What I liked most about her was her fight to control her human emotions and to think things through, but also not being afraid to be human. Her love for her aunt and goat-sisters (yup, it's true) comes first and it shows in her actions.
What Left Me Wanting More:
This is a GREAT read, but I must admit that I was expecting a far more complicated journey through the fairy courts and a lot more emotional punch/sacrifice. Half-way through the book I came to realize that the book had abandoned its original course of action and the characters set off to another course which was unsettling and left me a bit disappointed. I wanted to explore more! However, this is a standalone fantasy so I understand why it didn't go deeper story-wise. I so wish it did though!
Not only does An Enchantment of Ravens have a beautiful cover, but it's also lovely inside. With bright writing and a different take on fair folk lore, readers will end up wanting more of this world!