I have to admit, I was beyond ecstatic when I got approved for an ARC of this. I've seen it circulating on Goodreads prior and once I read the description I was SOLD! Well, if you know me then you know that anything that has "thief" in it sells me basically. I just love my grey characters!
But Sancia is much more than just a thief. Sancia is different, and I don't mean it in the "ohhh I'm so pretty but I think I'm so ugly special snowflake character" way - these should be outlawed by the way, lol. Sancia is strong, witty, brave and brutally honest. She also is not the one to fall down to peer pressure. You know how in most fantasy books it's "hey I just met you but can you go and do all this crazy dangerous stuff for me that can get you killed but it's a prophecy so you must do it" ? Well, Sancia is having none of that. Sancia knows how and when to say no, and when to say yes and I loved her for that.
If you can't tell, Sancia is my girl, and I truly enjoyed her character. Every little bit of it. And I also enjoyed Clef a lot. Clef is the most hilarious and at the same time the saddest character out there. You just have to read this to experience this paradox. And as I am a reader that always goes for the side characters, Berenice is the knees bees - the only complaint is that I wish we got more of her. Next book hopefully!
Now, the whole time I was reading this- I felt at home. Familiar. And then I realized why. It gave me the biggest, strongest Mistborn vibes. A street urchin with anxieties, a heist, a voice in the head, people able to fly in the air, god-like characters and much more. Is this Mistborn re-imagined or is this an ode to Brandon Sanderson? Fine with me either way to be honest, because I loved it nonetheless.
The writing did feel a bit silly to me at first, especially the dialog. Might be because before this book I just finished The Return of the King, and coming back to regular language after the grandeur of Tolkien was a bit shocking. But once I got used to it I enjoyed it tons. It was so readable - I flew through this in 3 days (would have read it faster if I didn't have to work). Damn you work!
The book held my attention almost completely, but it did have few moments in which I started drifting away, but which book doesn't, right? Also I must mention - the book got progressively more and more brutal. Like, wow hold on to your chairs brutal.
Lastly, I want to talk about this book's diversity. Flawless. You know how most books nowadays force diversity on the reader (because that's where them only are apparently). Well. not this book. It was so seamless, so perfect and it gave so much dimension to the story. Especially thankful for two main characters having ptsd and for how believable it was portrayed. But I am evermore thankful for my "ship" for sailing.
I was dismayed to learn that the book ends in a way that makes you want, need, must must must read the next book immediately. So, Jackson Bennett, you better write second book soon and quick, thank you.
Big thanks to NetGalley and Crown Publishing for an advanced copy of the book. All opinions are my own, honest and come from the heart.
Freelance BETA reader.