Title: Sorcery of Thorns
Author: Margaret Rogerson
Audience: Young Adult
Length: 456 pages
Publisher: McElderry Books
Release Date: June 4, 2019
Recommended for Fans of: Harry Potter, Gail Carson Levin books, Beauty & the Beast, Caraval
All sorcerers are evil. Elisabeth has known that as long as she has known anything. Raised as a foundling in one of Austermeer’s Great Libraries, Elisabeth has grown up among the tools of sorcery—magical grimoires that whisper on shelves and rattle beneath iron chains. If provoked, they transform into grotesque monsters of ink and leather. She hopes to become a warden, charged with protecting the kingdom from their power.
Then an act of sabotage releases the library’s most dangerous grimoire. Elisabeth’s desperate intervention implicates her in the crime, and she is torn from her home to face justice in the capital. With no one to turn to but her sworn enemy, the sorcerer Nathaniel Thorn, and his mysterious demonic servant, she finds herself entangled in a centuries-old conspiracy. Not only could the Great Libraries go up in flames, but the world along with them.
As her alliance with Nathaniel grows stronger, Elisabeth starts to question everything she’s been taught—about sorcerers, about the libraries she loves, even about herself. For Elisabeth has a power she has never guessed, and a future she could never have imagined.
What’s not to love about a magical library? This is every book lover’s dream, and the library’s magic is so unique! I love how the books are “alive” and have their own personalities.
I loved all of the character development in this book, especially Elisabeth’s. She is strong-willed, compassionate, and open-minded. When she is forced to leave the security of the library–the only home she’s ever known–she must confront all kinds of new obstacles for the first time: sorcerers, demons, sexism, and prejudice, including her own. She realizes that she can’t trust everything she was taught and learns to think for herself, and watching her discover her own beliefs and values was a highlight of this book.
And Nathaniel! A brooding and tortured young sorcerer, haunted by his past and his family, who has a kind heart underneath it all. I was here for Elisabeth and Nathaniel’s slow burning and very clean romance (except for one brief scene that doesn’t get very far).
Silas was a great surprise. Cruel and cunning by nature, he is deeply protective and truly cares for Nathaniel, even though it goes against his nature.
This book was utterly magical! It is exactly the kind of book I loved growing up, the kind of book that made me fall in love with reading. It made me nostalgic for all my old favorites like Harry Potter and The Two Princesses of Bamarre. I don’t think a book has ever made me want to go back and reread a totally unrelated book so much! I highly recommend this to fantasy lovers everywhere.