I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
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Released: June 1 2021
Genre: Young Adult
Series: Wilderwood #1
“While the overall story elicits curiosity, the plot did not have enough movement.”~ Under the Covers
“The first daughter is for the throne. The second daughter is for the Wolf. And the wolves are for the Wilderwood.”
For The Wolf by Hannah F. Whitten is a dark folk-lore retelling of Red Riding Hood. Though, I’d say it bares a resemblance combination of both Red Riding Hood and Beauty and The Beast. The book tells the story of the Valleydan twin princesses who get caught up in dark magic and ancient traditions. Legend states that every second daughter born from a Valleydan queen is to be sent to the wolf in the woods in order to restore the return of the kings. One daughter destined to rule and the other for the wolf, a sacrifice.
This long standing tradition practiced throughout the centuries has yet to bring the kings home. Red, as the only second daughter born in centuries is now tasked with the heavy burden. Only, she is relived to go. Determined to give herself to the wolf. In hopes to not only bring back the kings, but destroy a lurking magic cursing within her.
I loved this unique take on Red Riding Hood and Beauty and The Beast combo. The world building was captivating from the start. The character dynamics were intriguing and characters were likeable, even the fearsome wolf. You get reeled into the story wanting to know more. However, there were a few things I had difficulty with. While the overall story elicits curiosity, the plot did not have enough movement. The paced was slow with no clear definition of the origins of things which leads to confusion. We get a brief understanding of the sacrifice, the legend in which the tradition stands on and the overall theme, but not enough to carry its purpose. This in turn leaves a lot of unanswered questions.
Another thing that left me perplexed was the magic system. I was looking forward to it because it was quite mysterious and though we get to ‘see’ the magic in action, it was challenging to comprehend. We experience it all throughout the book, but it’s fundamental core was missing. We do not get a clear explanation of its inner workings or origin. The best way I could imagine and described the magic system as I read, was that of the show called, Cursed on Netflix. It bares some resemblance and due to its limited clarification in the book, this is the best I could compare it too.
Overall, I enjoyed the concept. The Wilderwood is like no forest you’ve ever seen. It is filled with mystery and an eerie atmosphere. This is only the first book of the series, it is likely that we may get more understanding of the legends and its magic system in the upcoming books. I do want to note that this book contains scenes which may be sensitive to some readers. Please do read any trigger warnings and front matter before you dive into the book.
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