Ancient magic, forbidden romance, BETRAYALS, The Wren Hunt is a book that I would recommend to anyone who likes weird, obscure-ish, fantasy/magic realism novels or who have read and liked The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater. I was lucky enough to be supplied with a proof copy and IT WAS AWESOME!
This book was released on 8th February 2018.
This review may contain mild spoilers for this book (What I consider spoilers might not be what you consider spoilers but I thought that I’d put it out there just in case). READERS YE BE WARNED!
Every Christmas, Wren is chased through the woods near her isolated village by her family’s enemies—the Judges—and there’s nothing that she can do to stop it. Once her people, the Augurs, controlled a powerful magic. But now that power lies with the Judges, who are set on destroying her kind for good.
In a desperate bid to save her family, Wren takes a dangerous undercover assignment—as an intern to an influential Judge named Cassa Harkness. Cassa has spent her life researching a transformative spell, which could bring the war between the factions to its absolute end. Caught in a web of deceit, Wren must decide whether or not to gamble on the spell and seal the Augurs’ fate.
Thank-you to Sonia at Bloomsbury for providing me with a proof copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Despite having an proof copy of this book it took me ages to read it. However, when I did get to it, it only took me a morning to read it from cover to cover. The Wren Hunt was an adventure full of strange magic and forbidden love and CrAzY betrayals. I really hope that there is going to be a sequel but I don’t think that there is (Insert pained and disappointed sobbing).
Despite being completely different, this book was giving me mad Raven Boys vibes. I think it was the archaic magic and strange old Irish words that made me think of it. To say that the plot is original is a VAST understatement (or, at least, I haven’t ever seen anything like it). It essentially follows a girl, Wren, as she is caught between two ancient druid factions, both of which really want to be the best and most powerful (or just survive, y’know) and both are willing to do anything to get what they want. I found the pacing of the book to be pretty good, no super slow parts or really fast parts, just a nice build-up of stuff until the story’s climax.
The story only follows one main character, Wren, instead of the oftentimes seen (at least in the books I read) story which follows from the points of view of both the main chicky and her no doubt handsome boy-toy. Wren is a super awesome, level-headed, and rather realistic if a bit naive main character and I couldn’t have adored her more. I will admit that I kind of related to her in that she was occasionally indecisive and got anxious about little things. Granted, most of that anxiousness was because she has a magic that will potentially send her insane, but I related to it none the less.
The writing in The Wren Hunt was magical and amazing… and also super creepy and atmospheric. Mary Watson did a wonderful job of using certain word choices to exaggerate parts of the plot and others to make you, the reader, almost feel as disjointed as Wren did at times. Only downside was the almost universal lack of explanation of the magical/Old Irish words used. You can pretty much figure out what most mean on your own but if you don’t or you are super oblivious (like I am occasionally) then you will probably be a bit lost at times.
The Wren Hunt was the very first hard copy proof of a book I was ever sent by a publisher and it wasn’t even one of the ones I requested. In saying that, I feel so so so privileged that I was sent a copy of this book even if it did take me a while to read it. It’s one of those books that doesn’t have much hype and I probably wouldn’t have picked it up if I hadn’t been sent a copy but since reading it, it has become my mission to get at least one other person to pick it up because I genuinely think it deserves it.