Review of “Sorcery of Thorns” by Margaret Rogerson

Rogerson, Margaret. Sorcery of Thorns. New York: Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2019.

Hardcover | $17.99 USD | ISBN-13: 978-1481497619 | 456 pages | YA Fantasy

4.5 stars

I was excited about about the buzz around Sorcery of Thorns, especially since it is one of those rare fantasy stand-alones, which I found refreshing, since I was getting a little annoyed with the structure of especially YA fantasy series, and getting invested then having to wait a year. And while I heard mixed things about Rogerson’s first book, An Enchantment of Ravens, I felt like I would click with the concept of this immediately, especially given it focuses on a magical library.

And I found myself blown away, especially by the quirky concept of the books themselves, with them actually being alive in a sense, comparable, as author Katherine Arden said in her blurb for the book, to the Hogwarts Library. And there is a dark, sometimes Gothic atmosphere to the setting which had me intrigued fairly early on.

As for Elisabeth herself, I felt like she’s a pretty great character to follow. She is a bit naive and trusting, but this is a case where it works with her background and, while it often led to some predictable moments, I still found her more or less relatable and likable in her motivations and desires.

While there are some familiar elements, I like that Rogerson does enough of her own thing that it doesn’t feel like too predictable, and I finished it feeling both satisfied and also longing for more in this fun world, even if not necessarily following the same characters. I would recommend this to other YA fantasy fans who are looking for another author to read.

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