Reading/Interest Level: Young Adult
Author: Mercedes Lackey
From a young age Joyeaux trained in a remote monastery to destroy the infestation of fay that plagues the world. Now the walls built to keep the people safe no longer hold the Otherworlders back and Joy is called to the capital city to join their team of hunters. As cameras broadcast her every move to legions of adoring fans, Joy must learn to navigate her newfound stardom and the rocky political climate. Even though the powerful elite are trying to hide reality from the populous to keep them complacent, Joy realizes that it’s becoming impossible to cover up the truth. Playing a delicate game, Joy is happy just to do her job until her mentor is killed and she must confront the cities secrets in order to establish a safe place for herself and the people she has come to love.
Lackey’s innovative imagination shines through as she continues to surprise readers with fresh characters and worlds. Envisioning a dystopian society where magic and mystical creatures reign supreme provides the perfect backdrop for the frank and powerful character of Joy. Even though the supporting characters often fill standard character types (bully, romantic interest, and outcast) their interactions with Joy give them the needed depth. With some plot and setting elements only slowly revealed, the overall structure may feel laborious but in the end this device connects well with Joy’s own path of discovery. Fans of Lackey will find something delightfully new here while others with find this a great entry point.
*Contains some violence.