Author: Jodi Meadows
Genre: YA Fantasy
Wilhelmina has a hundred identities.
She is a princess. When the Indigo Kingdom conquered her homeland, Wilhelmina and other orphaned children of nobility were taken to Skyvale, the Indigo Kingdom’s capital. Ten years later, they are the Ospreys, experts at stealth and theft. With them, Wilhelmina means to take back her throne.
She is a spy. Wil and her best friend, Melanie, infiltrate Skyvale Palace to study their foes. They assume the identities of nobles from a wraith-fallen kingdom, but enemies fill the palace, and Melanie’s behavior grows suspicious. With Osprey missions becoming increasingly dangerous and their leader more unstable, Wil can’t trust anyone.
She is a threat. Wraith is the toxic by-product of magic, and for a century using magic has been forbidden. Still the wraith pours across the continent, reshaping the land and animals into fresh horrors. Soon it will reach the Indigo Kingdom. Wilhelmina’s magic might be the key to stopping the wraith, but if the vigilante Black Knife discovers Wil’s magic, she will vanish like all the others
Jodi Meadows introduces a vivid new fantasy full of intrigue, romance, dangerous magic, and one girl’s battle to reclaim her place in the world.
I can almost hear you all give a sigh of relief. Yes, this does mean I can finally stop harping on about this book. But not before I give it one last go, in a last attempt to get you to read it. Fair warning, the first paragraph will be technical and serious. I can't promise what the rest of the review will be like, other than that it will have no spoilers.
Meadows' story is compelling, and I literally could not put it down. Four hours after the file download on to my kindle, I was crying over the ending. The characters are interesting and, for the most part, beautifully layered. I would have liked to have seen more of the Ospreys, other than the introduction and fleeting glimpses throughout the novel, but also understand that, given the nature of the plot, it wasn't possible - hopefully in the sequel, it will be. The plot itself needs a fair amount of attention to follow, but if you do, is pretty darn solid. I can't think of any gaping plot holes off the top of my head, just the endless list of questions about and for Black Knife.
Now on to the fun (and slightly less coherent? I had four hours of sleep, and am still emotionally compromised over that ending, so bear with me on this) part. Wil was a delight of narrator, and personally I would be honoured to call her my queen. Watching her grow and develop was beautiful, and I thoroughly enjoyed watching it happen.
Patrick was a douchebag, as advertised. No surprise there, though his dead-set, stubborn need to go against everything that Wil said really pissed me off. This woman is supposed to be his queen, and here he is, basically ordering her around like she's his slave. I hope he gets his comeuppance.
A review of OQ wouldn't be complete if I didn't mention Black Knife. Don't worry, dear skittish readers, I won't divulge his true identity - half of the fun is trying to figure it out for yourself and (I'm very proud to say), I guessed rightly after her first encounter with him. I don't care what happens, or what anyone says, if they don't get married, I give up on life. Yes, I am aware that there are numerous things in the way of that, but what good love story doesn't have a little adversity in it? (admittedly, the ending does pose the possibility of more than just a "little" adversity, but still).
Melanie really bothered me, and I'm not entirely sure I trust her quite so readily as Wil does. She's too emotionally attached to the cause. I really hope we find out more about that side of things.
Was it worth the wait? Absolutely. Hold on to your hats, grab your defibrillators (you'll need it, that ending is just cruel!) and dive in!
Got to the end and refuse to leave Wil's world, or just need something to cheer you up a little? I did a GIF review that you can find here.