Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Angry Robot
Something is wrong in Aquae Sulis, Bath’s secret mirror city.
The new season is starting and the Master of Ceremonies is missing. Max, an Arbiter of the Split Worlds Treaty, is assigned with the task of finding him with no one to help but a dislocated soul and a mad sorcerer.
There is a witness but his memories have been bound by magical chains only the enemy can break. A rebellious woman trying to escape her family may prove to be the ally Max needs.
But can she be trusted? And why does she want to give up eternal youth and the life of privilege she’s been born into?
This is a hard review for me to write. I have such mixed thoughts about this novel and they vary between really good and really bad. Newman is a very creative person because Between Two Thorns certainly is a very original novel. The problem is while this is a very good thing, it was also a bit too strange for me to wrap my head around the world-building and background.
While I found the world-building very strange because of the many different worlds (Exilium, where the Fae live, Mundanus, and the Nether where the Fae-touched live), the plot was entertaining enough for me not to give up on this novel. I also found the connection between these different worlds to be a bit complicated to understand. The author does leave everything for us readers to find out for ourselves, this can be a good or a bad thing. In my case it was rather bad. But while these things did bother me, I really liked the whole mystery in the novel and how the different characters got to interact with each other.
Now to the characters. I didn`t feel any great connection to any of them. I could compare this novel to a crime novel because the plot is what makes this novel great and not the characters.
Overall I enjoyed reading this novel because it was something completely new and original. There were somethings that really could have been better, like how the author could have given us more details and explanations about the different worlds. Nevertheless the story and the outcome were really enjoyable. I´m a bit surprised that this novel is just the start of a series, for me it could have worked as a standalone despite the slight cliffhanger in the end. I do want to see how this story will develop further in the next installment.
Big thanks to Angry Robot for providing me with a copy of Between Two Thorns for review!