Published by HarperCollins on March 1, 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Format: Kindle eBook
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Melissa Marr returns to faery in a dramatic story of the precarious space between two worlds—and the people who must thrive there. The combination of ethereal fae powers, tumultuous romance, and a bloodthirsty faery queen will have longtime fans and new readers alike at the edge of their seats.
Lilywhite Abernathy is a criminal—she's half human, half fae, and since the time before she was born her very blood has been illegal. A war has been raging between humans and faeries, and the Queen of Blood and Rage, ruler of the fae courts, wants to avenge the tragic death of her heir due to the actions of reckless humans.
Lily's father has always shielded her from the truth, but when she's sent to the prestigious St. Columba's school, she's delivered straight into the arms of a fae Sleeper cell—the Black Diamonds. The Diamonds are planted in the human world as the sons and daughters of the most influential families, and tasked with destroying it from within. Against her will, Lilywhite's been chosen to join them . . . and even the romantic attention of the fae rock singer Creed Morrison isn't enough to keep Lily from wanting to run back to the familiar world she knows.
A young changeling discovers she is part of a much bigger plot in this young adult dystopian fantasy novel. Let’s review!
Lilywhite Abernathy is seriously going down as one of my all-time favorite female characters. Very much like Avry from Snyder’s Healer series, Lilywhite has a strong sense of self even if she struggles to understand everything going on around her. I loved how Marr incorporates Lily’s “rules” throughout the narrative, which helps structure the story despite the various points of view from other characters.
I also absolutely loved the other six members of Lily’s group. They were all really unique with their own agendas and schemes. Some got more “screen” time than others, and I hope future novels in the series gives them all an opportunity to shine. Even when I did not like an action taken by one of the six, I always understood the motives behind the action. Finally, it was refreshing to have so many POC characters. I hope this is a trend we start seeing more of in young adult literature.
While the characters really made this novel enjoyable, the setting lacked any real development. Neither the fey realm nor the human realm really offered anything distinctive. Additionally, aren’t these characters at a boarding school? Did they never, ever have to attend classes? That really bothered me. I hope the next book delves further into the world-building. These characters deserve better world-building!
tl;dr Strong female heroine surround by a wonderfully diverse cast of secondary characters with a really intriguing plot makes this novel a must read.