In this thrilling and epic YA fantasy debut, the only hope for a city trapped in the eye of a cursed storm lies with the daughter of failed revolutionaries and a prince terrified of his throne.
Vesper Vale is the daughter of revolutionaries. Failed revolutionaries. When her mother was caught by the queen’s soldiers, they gave her a choice: death by the hangman’s axe, or death by the Storm that surrounds the city and curses anyone it touches. She chose the Storm. And when the queen’s soldiers—led by a paranoid prince—catch up to Vesper’s father after twelve years on the run, Vesper will do whatever it takes to save him from sharing that fate.
Even arm herself with her father’s book of dangerous experimental magic.
Even infiltrate the prince’s elite squad of soldier-sorcerers.
Even cheat her way into his cold heart.
But when Vesper learns that there’s more to the story of her mother’s death, she’ll have to make a choice if she wants to save her city: trust the devious prince with her family’s secrets, or follow her mother’s footsteps into the Storm.
When Vesper Vale's revolutionary parents failed to overthrow their city's corrupt ruler, her mother was captured and forced to enter the unending Storm that surrounds their city and is said to curse anyone it touches. Twelve years later, Vesper, now 17, and her father, Pa, live on the run, evading the city's guardians, called Wardana. As a learned ikonomancer, Pa uses symbols to activate powerful spells, which the duo use to survive. Eventually, however, their luck runs out and Pa is captured by the ruler's heir, Prince Dalca. Fearing that her father will share the same fate as her mother, Vesper embarks on a treacherous rescue mission. Aided by Izmal, a Wardana guard and secret revolutionary, Vesper—disguised and armed with her father's ikonomancy texts—insinuates herself into Dalca's inner circle. There, she discovers that her mother's death may not be as straightforward as it seemed and realizes she'll need the help of unlikely allies to save her father—and the city—from the Storm. Though vague, undescriptive prose occasionally makes the fantasy world difficult to visualize, high-stakes action and a delicate enemies-to-lovers romance propels Mara's duology-opening debut to its climactic end. Ages 12–up. Agent: Tracey Adams, Adams Literary.
I'm crying so thanks
This book is really good. The Darkening acknowledges what loss and pain can create within us. Whether one allows their pain to consume them is a detrimental question to my mental health.