Book Title: Unnatural Magic
Author: C. M. Waggoner
Release Date: 11/05/20
Star Rating: An outstanding debut novel.
Disclaimer: I received this book free from Netgalley in return for an unbiased review.
This book was a real pleasure to read. I typically read at night and if a book has really captured my attention, then I think about it through the day, and can’t wait until bedtime when I can finally sink into the world again. This book felt that way for me.
Onna is a young woman, extraordinarily gifted in magic and very studious, but she has to contend with the burden of living as a female in a pretty male-driven human society.
Tsira is a female troll who is struggling to find her place in the world. Trolls in this book are a highly developed species, magically superior to humans in fact.
Both of the young women find themselves caught up in the mystery of who is targeting and brutally murdering trolls.
The magic system and world building were not neglected either. They are well thought out and contribute much to the setting.
But as engrossing as the central mystery being investigated is, for me the beauty of this book lies in its relationships. Tsira saves the life of a young human soldier and what follows is a really wonderful love story. Onna becomes the apprentice and friend to a truly eccentric wizard. All of these characters are complex and interesting. The relationship between Tsira and her young man explores gender non-conforming themes, and it’s so sweet to watch him allow himself to be loved by her in ways he never would have dreamed in normal human society. Onna’s mentor is a fascinating bisexual character, but their relationship is one of true respect and appreciation for each others talents.
I just found the book so refreshing and delightful. I can’t recommend this book enough.
Song for this book: You’re Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go – Madeleine Peyroux