Emily Wilde's Encyclopaedia of Faeries
Book 1 of the Emily Wilde Series
NATIONAL BESTSELLER • A curmudgeonly professor journeys to a small town in the far north to study faerie folklore and discovers dark fae magic, friendship, and love in the start of a heartwarming and enchanting new fantasy series.
“A darkly gorgeous fantasy that sparkles with snow and magic.”—Sangu Mandanna, author of The Very Secret Society of Irregular Witches
Cambridge professor Emily Wilde is good at many things: She is the foremost expert on the study of faeries. She is a genius scholar and a meticulous researcher who is writing the world’s first encyclopaedia of faerie lore. But Emily Wilde is not good at people. She could never make small talk at a party—or even get invited to one. And she prefers the company of her books, her dog, Shadow, and the Fair Folk to other people.
So when she arrives in the hardscrabble village of Hrafnsvik, Emily has no intention of befriending the gruff townsfolk. Nor does she care to spend time with another new arrival: her dashing and insufferably handsome academic rival Wendell Bambleby, who manages to charm the townsfolk, muddle Emily’s research, and utterly confound and frustrate her.
But as Emily gets closer and closer to uncovering the secrets of the Hidden Ones—the most elusive of all faeries—lurking in the shadowy forest outside the town, she also finds herself on the trail of another mystery: Who is Wendell Bambleby, and what does he really want? To find the answer, she’ll have to unlock the greatest mystery of all—her own heart.
In Fawcett's slow-moving but atmospheric debut adult fantasy (after YA Even the Darkest Stars), a socially awkward Cambridge professor heads to the frost-coated fictional country of Ljosland in an alternate 1909 where tangling with faeries is commonplace. The tale is presented as the journal of dryadologist Emily Wilde as she documents her research for the eponymous encyclopedia. These journal entries work well at giving readers a window into the voice and personality of an extremely introverted and detached heroine, but they don't make the aloof, academic Emily any easier to root for. As Emily becomes more involved with the Ljosland locals and their faerie troubles—and meets a changeling fae, who has swapped places with a local infant—Wendell Bambleby, Emily's colleague, professional rival, and only friend, arrives, claiming to want to help. Emily's less than thrilled, as she distrusts Wendell's methods and suspects that he himself may be a fae. Though the first entry in Emily's journal hints at the high stakes of her work, the plot itself is more concerned with unpacking her relationships; danger doesn't rear its head until the very end. Still, the extensive faerie lore and lush descriptions of the wintry setting make this fantasy worth picking up.
Funny, magical, charming
A great cozy fantasy book <3
Great characters, world building! I have a new favorite author!
I loved every page of this delightful book.