*Disclaimer: I received a review copy from the author for review consideration. This does in no way affect my opinion, and all thoughts expressed in this review are unbiased and my own.*
Series: The Croswald Series
Author: D.E. Night
My rating: 3 hearts
Genre: Middle Grade, Fantasy
Pub. date: July 21st 2017
Publisher: Stories Untold Press
Synopsis: In Croswald, the only thing more powerful than dark magic is one secret…
For sixteen years Ivy Lovely has been hidden behind an enchanted boundary that separates the mundane from the magical. When Ivy crosses the border, her powers awaken. Curiosity leads her crashing through a series of adventures at the Halls of Ivy, a school where students learn to master their magical blood and the power of Croswald’s mysterious gems. When Ivy’s magic––and her life––is threatened by the Dark Queen, she scrambles to unearth her history and save Croswald before the truth is swept away forever. (synopsis from Goodreads)
I have mixed feelings about this book, to be honest. While I love the world-building, the plot was really slow and hard to get into. It was magical and fun, but a little boring at times, and I struggled through a big part of it. Nothing about the book really surprised me.
The characters were alright, but lacked real depth. It might be because of the way it was written, because it did make it hard to really get to know the main character, Ivy, so that was a bit disappointing. And I felt like a lot of the secondary characters were only there to help Ivy forward, they didn’t really have much of a purpose of their own.
The plot was a bit boring. It was unique and interesting, which was why I had really huge expectations, but it ended up being fairly boring. Not much happened until about halfway through the book. The second half was good, though, and I wish the rest of the book had been that good. But despite the slowness, the mystery of it kept me reading, because I really wanted to know what was going on.
But the world-building was amazing. It was magical, and while the plot wasn’t too exciting, the world-building kept me reading it, because I was really interested in learning more. It was a fun and interesting new world, and really well thought-out. The magic was different, and I loved it.
Overall, it was an okay read. The second half of the book was good enough that I’ll try the second book (and okay, I really want to know how things turn out for Ivy. That last plot twist definitely caught my attention.) If you enjoy light fantasy, then this book might be for you. I think part of the reason why I didn’t like it that much was because I had such high expectations. But it was an original, magical read, and I’ll definitely read the next book.