Series: Keepers' Chronicles #1
Published by Simon and Schuster on March 3, 2015
Genres: Action & Adventure, Fantasy, High Fantasy, Young Adult
Amazon • Book Depository •
In a world where dukes plot their way to the throne, a Performer’s life can get tricky.
All Johanna Von Arlo wants to do is become a Storyspinner. But her options are so limited that she is forced to work for the aggravating and handsome Lord Rafael DeSilva. While in his employ, Johanna is exposed to a dangerous game of thrones, a game where she will discover that the magically inclined Keepers from her stories might be real after all.
The Keepers are searching for an heir to a great power and the key to saving their land. They aren’t alone in their hunt. Girls matching the heir’s description are turning up dead all over the kingdom. Girls who look exactly like Johanna.
A story spun like sugar. And blood. But mainly sugar. (Not really.)
GUYS! THIS BOOK! RIGHT HERE!
So right from the get-go, The Storyspinner jumped to the top of my TBR. I’m a huge high fantasy fan, and with the phrase Game of Thrones literally in the synopsis, how could I not be excited? I’m a sucker for some good political intrigue. And, you know. Magic, fights, acrobatics, kickass heroines–basically anything that The Storyspinner had, I loved. So evidently I loved this book, but we can’t stop the review there can we?
I honestly have no idea how to talk about this book in coherent sentences because I honestly can quite put into words what I loved about the book–or at least, not all the things!
But Johanna. Oh my gosh, I loved her character. We see sassy, stubborn heroines all the time in YA fiction, but somehow Johanna just seems to stand out. Her personality seemed so much fleshed out to me and while, with two storylines (more on that later), we don’t get to fully know her and all her quirks, we do learn how snarky a character she is–and honestly who doesn’t love that? (Sow kissing mud sucker is officially my favorite insult ever.) She wasn’t badass in the way that she went actively kicking butt and fighting people, but she protected her family and her friends, she was fiercely loyal, passionate, and…brash. Which you don’t see very often, do you? She was blunt and hilarious with a streak of cussing in a rather colorful language. (Seriously. YOU SOW KISSING MUD SUCKER.)
Okay, but moving on. Like I mentioned there are two storylines and while, typically, I don’t really love that (since knowing what happens in one ruins a huge twist in the other.), it just worked for The Storyspinner. I can’t say I was surprised by any of the revelations, but the anticipation of wondering what would happen next practically killed me. I kept wondering when/if/how this or that character would discover this or that thing. Kept wondering if that character would ever run into this other character over here or if this character would find about about that event.
I will admit that the story was a bit slow in the beginning, but once you get caught up, you really get caught up. I spent an entire reading this book in one story, getting absorbed by the political intrigue, the snark, the traveling, the complete and utter otherworldiness of the story. And I don’t regret it one bit.
The relationships in the story though, was definitely one of my absolute favorite things of the story. Whether it was the loyal and protective relationship between Johanna and her siblings, the brotherly one between Dom and Rafi, or the snarky hateful (but we all know not really hateful) between Johanna and Rafi, they were all just so well written and I couldn’t help but fall in love with each character as Johanna did.
But I can’t not talk about Johanna and Rafi. There was almost no romance between this two, which you very, very, very rarely see. If anything there was a contempt and loathing that slowly dwindled to something akin to being frenemies. Their interactions made me giggle but also made me want to just
The Storyspinner is an absolutely amazing high fantasy that definitely seems to echo the betrayal and political intrigue of Game of Thrones–and the badass heroines. I don’t think I can squeal about this book enough without absolutely exploding, but I’d definitely recommend this to anyone who loves high fantasy! DEFINITELY. READ IT. Or one of those stick figures is going to be replaced with a book and the other is going to be you.
What? It’s not a threat, promise.