This was on my most anticipated reads of 2021 list and I was mediocrely excited for it when I saw it on NetGalley. Anything on that list automatically gets requested. So I did.
This ARC was provided to me by NetGalley in return for an honest review. Thank you!
For The Wolf
by Hannah Whitten
The first daughter is for the Throne.
The second daughter is for the Wolf.
For fans of Uprooted and The Bear and the Nightingale comes a dark fantasy novel about a young woman who must be sacrificed to the legendary Wolf of the Wood to save her kingdom. But not all legends are true, and the Wolf isn’t the only danger lurking in the Wilderwood.
As the only Second Daughter born in centuries, Red has one purpose-to be sacrificed to the Wolf in the Wood in the hope he’ll return the world’s captured gods.
Red is almost relieved to go. Plagued by a dangerous power she can’t control, at least she knows that in the Wilderwood, she can’t hurt those she loves. Again.
But the legends lie. The Wolf is a man, not a monster. Her magic is a calling, not a curse. And if she doesn’t learn how to use it, the monsters the gods have become will swallow the Wilderwood-and her world-whole.
- Red’s storyline
I wasn’t sure what to expect for this going in. I knew it would be some form of east-European fairytale retelling and some sort of red riding hood retelling. I was not sure what I got in the end either.
The story follows Red as she is sacrificed to the wolf only to find out she doesn’t have to be and the wolf is a man. a moody, brooding sort of man who sacrifices himself for anyone else. that type of man. Then the story deviates and we get snips from Neve, Red’s older sister, and what she is doing in the palace. I never liked Neves story. In the beginning, it distracted me from Red’s story but then I understood there was a thread running through both and intermingling. Then I started disliking Neve’s story even more seeing if for what the plotline was and where it would go. I always loved Red’s storyline. That was the one that kept me going.
The world-building was well done – meaning I didn’t really notice it much.
The magic is mixed up with religion in this story but there are two kinds of magic that you can use if you know (not a lot do as its not common knowledge) only by letting blood. It’s not blood magic. But it’s a way of giving your blood in return for gifts. Depending on who you give it to you’ll either get death or life in return.
I liked the Wilderwood and its magic is neither good nor bad. I liked how it worked. Even the Shadowlands had a well-working magic in return. The way those magic clashed made perfect sense but wasn’t easy to spot in the beginning. I liked that.
Red was my favourite character but she wasn’t particularly well written. I didn’t buy her emotions, I bought her actions. There were some telling of what she felt and I didn’t like it at all. But I loved her storyline so I accepted it.
Eammon was also an interesting character. However, I felt we saw very little of the side characters. I would have liked a bit more of them all. It was very narrowed on the MC.
Nope! Nothing. No mentions, no side characters, nothing. Makes me a bit suspicious.
This book felt like it had originally be written in 1st person and then later changed into a 3rd person narrative. We knew very little about anyone else and a lot about the narrator. I didn’t particularly like that.
Also, there were some telling when it came to emotions. I don’t mind having telling in the story but there needs to be a balance and with new emotions showing would be the best I feel as a reader.
Having said that there were no spelling mistakes, the writing flowed easy and I didn’t even notice much of the world-building which is the best kind. It wasn’t badly written but there is room for improvement.
It was an ok book. I liked one story better but felt the MC of that storyline wasn’t written the best way. The plot made me continue reading not the character.
I know this is a debut author so it will be interesting to see what else this author comes out with but for now, I don’t think this series is for me.
As a side note, but this is gnawing on me. Having zero LGBT side character or mentions at all is just weird in these times. No?? Am I the only one?
Have you read this? What did you think?