A long, but well worth it, wait… (spoiler-free review)

Hello friends! It’s been a while, I know, let me explain before I bring you this review of another amazing new release. If you are just interested in the review I encourage you to skip over this life update. I really regret not doing an update post but to be honest I have been the most mentally drained that I have ever been these past few months. Work and school picked up at the very same time and the very little free time I had I chose to spend with family and friends. I was forced to neglect my blog and bookstagram which was really hard for me. Then my computer wouldn’t work and my pre-taken bookstagram photos disappeared and i hit a low point in terms of motivation. It was really tough but my family and sparse bookstagram time kept me going and here I am. I have a temporary fix for my compute and I am in the process of purchasing a new laptop so this will be the first of many blog posts for this summer (since I am finally done exams and have two months for myself)! Anyways, I’ve missed you all and I cannot wait to be back in this book blogging community because I truly do love it.

Title – Onyx and Ivory

Author – Mindee Arnett

Rating – 4/5

Release Date – May 15th, 2018

Publisher – Balzer + Bray

Format – ARC from publisher (thank you so much to Harper Collins; all opinions are my own)

Kate Brighton is known as a traitor. Her father’s attempt at assassinating the King of Rime cost him his life and cost Kate her reputation. Kate now lives on the outs, clinging to her job as a member of the relay, and being forced to do her best to escape the night or else face the nightdrakes. Kate has a secret…one that can easily get her captured and killed. Kate’s a Wilder, someone who’s magic allows her to influence animal minds. Wilder magic comes in all forms, uncontrollable by the mages in charge, so Wilders are punished by death if caught. When her magic carries her to a caravan that was attacked by a horde of nightdrakes in the daylight she runs into the King’s son Corwin, an old family friend and lover. The drakes attacking in the day is a new threat and is indicative of an underlying darker force that may lead to a civil war. Danger, love, and mystery await.

Wow, that sounds like an amazing book, right? The premise of this book gave me such high expectations and, considering those expectations, I was not let down by much by this read. The only thing I really had a problem with was the beginning. I found it really hard to get into, especially the first 200 pages. I feel like some stuff could have been cut out, but I do see the reason they left it in. The part that dragged on was the extensive plot development, but after the first 200 pages I really appreciated it. If you’re struggling to get into this one, keep reading, I promise that it’s worth it.

I really loved the two types of magic involved in this book. There was the “official” Mage magic and then the outlawed Wilder magic. The differences in the two and the rivalry (mostly from the Mages towards the Wilders) was a really interesting side plot. The magic in general and how it works with the wardstones and the League is really fascinating and was well-developed.

There were a lot of little side plots that were so well woven in to the story and added so much to keep the reader interested. These side plots increased after the first 200 pages (which we already know how I feel about) which accounted for how much more engaging the story became. Most of the side plots involved plot twists which were absolutely insane and I don’t see any way that I could have picked up on them before they were revealed.

There were a lot of characters that all played a very unique and specific part to the story and they fit their role well (ex: the villains were very easy to hate). I have a new book boyfriend (because yes, I need more) in Corwin because he is the sweetest and most caring person ever and will literally do anything for those he loves. He’s also very sassy which I love. Kate is a really likable and realistic main character and was basically the only thing (along with Corwin) in the story that got me through the first 200 pages. I saw a lot of myself in Signe (because she is so sassy) and Bonner is just the kind of person that you would go to for a hug when you’re down. I really love how all of these character developed in their own personal ways; they were so strong-willed and I cannot wait to see what happens in the next book.

I can’t say much without spoiling it but after this book picked up it was so action-packed,, mysterious, and the high stakes kept you on the edge of your seat. I highly recommend this book to any fantasy lover because I believe that it brings something fresh to the YA fantasy table and you will not be let down. Good news is, this book was released a month ago so you can go pick it up this instant! Woohoo!

Have you read Onyx and Ivory yet? Are you planning to? Let me know in a comment!