Widdershins is back, facing romance, supernatural foes and some serious soul searching.
After the dramatic events of the first volume (Thief’s Covenant, 2012), street-rat–turned-noble-turned-thief—and now turned bar owner—Widdershins and her deity Olgun (still secret in a city with 147 recognized deities and a very strong church) are trying their hand at honest living, but it’s not working out. When they go back to the criminal life, they stumble into another big conspiracy of crime and dark magic, find themselves allied with the surprisingly appealing Major Bouniard of the city Guard and, more reluctantly, with a disgraced nobleman out to destroy Widdershins in revenge. Marmell’s occasionally florid writing and hackneyed dialogue can’t detract from the gory adventures (including a wonderfully macabre bad guy), but beneath the action lies a deeper, if unsubtle, tale of loss and love. Secondary characters may be types and primary characters tropes, but genuinely adolescent (including occasional idiotic and immature behavior) high fantasy is rare enough that this stands out.
A romp with an edge and a feisty female lead: Fans will rejoice at the indication that this series has even more to come. (Fantasy. 13 & up)