Truthwitch by Susan Dennard
In a continent on the edge of war, two witches hold its fate in their hands.
Young witches Safiya and Iseult have a habit of finding trouble. After clashing with a powerful Guildmaster and his ruthless Bloodwitch bodyguard, the friends are forced to flee their home.
Safi must avoid capture at all costs as she’s a rare Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lies. Many would kill for her magic, so Safi must keep it hidden – lest she be used in the struggle between empires. And Iseult’s true powers are hidden even from herself.
In a chance encounter at Court, Safi meets Prince Merik and makes him a reluctant ally. However, his help may not slow down the Bloodwitch now hot on the girls’ heels. All Safi and Iseult want is their freedom, but danger lies ahead. With war coming, treaties breaking and a magical contagion sweeping the land, the friends will have to fight emperors and mercenaries alike. For some will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.
This book has been getting some mixed reviews. When it first came out I feel like everyone was talking about it. I couldn’t watch booktube without one of my favorites mentioning it. I got the chance to meet Susan Dennard back in January. She was so kind and funny that I picked up both Truthwitch and Windwitch to enjoy later. Well this past week was later. I’ll give you a little pro con list to help you decide if this is a book you want to read.
- World building. On one hand, there was definitely a lot of world building. There is plenty of information to help you imagine this world in your head. But the reason I list it under the cons is because the way Dennard writes, the world building comes off as info dumpy. Many of the people who DNF-ed this book, did so within the first 5 ish chapters due to being completely confused. I won’t lie, I spent those first few chapters shaking my head wondering what the heck was going on. I feel like Dennard is just like,”Here baby bird” *drops out of the nest* You get all these new phrases and words and instead of explaining them you just have to figure it out by context.
- The plot. This sort of goes with the world building. But when the book takes off I had the hardest time trying to figure out why the girls were on the run. They set off a trap meant for someone else. But that means they are running for their lives? I don’t know it just took a few minutes to pick up what was being laid down. Over all the plot ended up being interesting.
- The characters are amazing. From the moment we are introduced to Safi and Isuelt I knew that I would love them. Their sister relationship is #goals. I loved seeing them interact and the depths they would go to protect the other. I also actually really enjoyed Merik. I totally teared up near the end when a semi-important event happened. Merik was just relatable. Even when he was being an ass. (Maybe that says something about me.)
- Safi and Merik. Truthwitch sold me on this hate to love trope. I’ve never really enjoyed it until reading this novel. And friends, I was swooning. I love this two characters together and will root for them till the end.
- The story as a whole had me totally captivated from beginning to end. I mean yes I was confused in the very beginning. But after I got over that I couldn’t put the book down. I was on the edge of my seat, biting my nails, cheering my new friends through their journey.
“I hate this. Both the storm and the plan. Why does it have to be ‘we’? Why not just me?”
“Because ‘just me’ isn’t who we are,” Iseult hollered back. “I’ll always follow you, Safi, and you’ll always follow me. Threadsisters to the end.”
“If you wanted to, Safiya, you could bend and shape the world.”
“Stasis in my fingers. Stasis in my toes.”
I would recommend this for anyone who likes a lot of YA fantasy like Sarah J. Maas’ Throne of Glass or anything by Cinda Williams Chima. If you don’t mind the info dumping and can hold on through the wonky explainations then you will absolutely love these characters. I promise.