If you like sweet, steamy, self-sacrificing love interests.. this book is a must read. If you prefer intricate magic systems and brutal villains at every turn.. this novel has that too.
According to the author's website, Isabella August is the nom de guerre of not one.. but a pair of writers, who began as childhood friends. As adults, thousands of miles apart geographically, but clearly much closer at the heart.. they collaborate on stories like this one. And what a lovely intricate web they weave...
I am absolutely in love with Liam. He is indeed, all the things I mentioned above, but also so much more. He's a force to be reckoned with. He's one of the most sensual male characters I've ever read, but in ways I've experienced, which made him feel all the more realistic. He's amusing and possessive.. yet reasonable about it. He's also deeply conflicted, through no real fault of his own, which.. I am a sucker for.
Our story though, mainly centers around a young witch named Lainey, who has lost huge chunks of her memory, but gained something considerable as well. A character that is quite likable herself. She has vulnerabilities, but she isn't the type to just stand aside and wail either. Nor is she an over the top 'bad ass' type. Rather, she digs down when she needs to.. but she stumbles. She makes mistakes.
The world itself.. for me.. was kind of a stunning mix of the frozen land of Beauty's Beast.. and Wonderland mazes.. with a lot of other interesting landscapes thrown in as well. And that magic system I mentioned? Diverse. So diverse, the author(s?) have even seen fit to include a breakdown at the back of the book. I cannot wait to read more.
All in all, I adored every moment of this story. I read it front to back in one sitting. I think my eyes may be bleeding.. but it was worth it. Just as I know the rest of the books in the series are going to be.