An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson
Synopsis: Isobel is an artistic prodigy with a dangerous set of clients: the sinister fair folk, immortal creatures who cannot bake bread or put a pen to paper without crumbling to dust. They crave human Craft with a terrible thirst, and Isobel’s paintings are highly prized. But when she receives her first royal patron—Rook, the autumn prince—she makes a terrible mistake. She paints mortal sorrow in his eyes—a weakness that could cost him his life.
Furious, Rook spirits her away to his kingdom to stand trial for her crime. But something is seriously wrong in his world, and they are attacked from every side. With Isobel and Rook depending on each other for survival, their alliance blossoms into trust, then love—and that love violates the fair folks’ ruthless laws. Now both of their lives are forfeit, unless Isobel can use her skill as an artist to fight the fairy courts. Because secretly, her Craft represents a threat the fair folk have never faced in all the millennia of their unchanging lives: for the first time, her portraits have the power to make them feel.
My rating: 3/5 meh shaped stars
My review: I had really high hopes for this one. I mean- that synopsis. That cover art.
An Enchantment of Ravens started out pretty strong. The set up of the world, the magic system (called craft, something that only humans have- the only thing that makes them ‘useful’ to the vicious Fae), and Isobel (at least at first) were both really well done. Isobel seemed like the kind of woman who would not be taken in by the fae, someone who could see past their glamour and beauty. Then Rook arrived in a flurry of raven feathers and insta-love and the story took a nose dive. Character motivations and personalities became murky and unpredictable. Isobel acted bizarrely at odds with her previous self, and the romance (a huge part of the plot) was not all that believable to me.
The world and the ideas are neat and have so much potential. This might have been better as a series. Given three books, the world and all of its lore would have had more room to stretch out and grow, and character development would not have felt so rushed. The ending did not have quite the impact it should have because some of the most important characters still felt like sketches in a rough draft to me.
Overall, it scratched that atmospheric fae story itch, and it kept me solidly entertained during a five-hour plane ride. I enjoyed parts of it but probably wouldn’t read it again.
If you like all things fae and romance, you can find An Enchantment of Ravens here!