Oh my gosh. I haven’t read a Garth Nix book in so freaking long?! Actually I think the first Garth Nix books that I read was the Keys in the Kingdom series, and even though I didn’t end up finishing it – what else is new – I really enjoyed it growing up! I’ll have to see if I can find the rest of the books and eventually finish it. So when I saw that Fantastic Flying Book Club was doing a blog tour for the newest Nix book, I knew I had to sign up. So big yay that I ended up getting picked for this one!
As usual, click on the banner for the tour schedule and all the other info that you may want to find out and to see the rest of the stops on the tour!
More than a century has passed since Liliath crept into the empty sarcophagus of Saint Marguerite, fleeing the Fall of Ystara. But she emerges from her magical sleep still beautiful, looking no more than nineteen, and once again renews her single-minded quest to be united with her lover, Palleniel, the archangel of Ystara.
A seemingly impossible quest, but Liliath is one of the greatest practitioners of angelic magic to have ever lived, summoning angels and forcing them to do her bidding.
Liliath knew that most of the inhabitants of Ystara died from the Ash Blood plague or were transformed into beastlings, and she herself led the survivors who fled into neighboring Sarance. Now she learns that angels shun the Ystaran’s descendants. If they are touched by angelic magic, their blood will turn to ash. They are known as Refusers, and can only live the most lowly lives.
But Liliath cares nothing for the descendants of her people, save how they can serve her. It is four young Sarancians who hold her interest: Simeon, a studious doctor-in-training; Henri, a dedicated fortune hunter; Agnez, an adventurous musketeer cadet; and Dorotea, an icon-maker and scholar of angelic magic. They are the key to her quest.
The four feel a strange kinship from the moment they meet, but do not know why, or suspect their importance. All become pawns in Liliath’s grand scheme to fulfill her destiny and be united with the love of her life. No matter the cost to everyone else. . .
Garth Nix has been a full-time writer since 2001, but has also worked as a literary agent, marketing consultant, book editor, book publicist, book sales representative, bookseller, and as a part-time soldier in the Australian Army Reserve.
Garth’s books include the Old Kingdom fantasy series, comprising Sabriel, Lirael; Abhorsen; Clariel and Goldenhand; SF novels Shade’s Children and A Confusion of Princes; and a Regency romance with magic, Newt’s Emerald. His novels for children include The Ragwitch; the six books of The Seventh Tower sequence; The Keys to the Kingdom series and others. He has co-written several books with Sean Williams, including the Troubletwisters series; Spirit Animals Book Three: Blood Ties; Have Sword, Will Travel; and the forthcoming sequel Let Sleeping Dragons Lie. A contributor to many anthologies and magazines, Garth’s selected short fiction has been collected in Across the Wall and To Hold the Bridge.
More than five million copies of his books have been sold around the world, they have appeared on the bestseller lists of The New York Times, Publishers Weekly and USA Today and his work has been translated into 42 languages. His most recent book is Frogkisser! now being developed as a film by Twentieth Century Fox/Blue Sky Animation.
Disclaimer: I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you to Katherine Tegan Books, Edelweiss, and Fantastic Flying Book Club for this free copy. All quotes in this review are taken from the Advanced Reader Copy and may change in final publication.
Okay, like I mentioned before, it has been many many years since I first read a Garth Nix book, and rereading the first book of The Keys to the Kingdom brought back some memories but it was definitely aged out for me. This one is a NA book, and it definitely had a different feel than other books I read from him, so that’s definitely a plus for me.
Second of all, I am so into a book that deals with a main character that is pretty much a bitch villain and I’m so turned on by it? Like, give me more books about bad girls and let me see how calculating and vindictive and badass they are. Don’t give me the Not Your Average Girl™ MCs that we seem to get in YA novels – more back in the day than now, thank gosh but still – and I don’t need girls trying to save the world. Give me the girls trying to burn it. Liliath is giving me those vibes, especially since she was trying to burn the world over 100 years ago.
Clearly there’s a pattern here.
Anyway, immediately we are introduced to a world that is in chaos, almost as if it is the zombie apocalypse in an angel like world. It’s actually kind of scary when you think about it. This was basically the prologue, to understand what happened to the world of Ystara over 100 years ago that Liliath was involved in before she took a long beauty sleep. Just kidding, it wasn’t that simple, but she was still beautiful and young when she woke up. It was crazy, lots of people were either dying or becoming… infected.
Over 100 years later, the descendants of those that somehow survived seem to be punished for what happened back then, and Liliath plans on using four of them to bring on her plans that were so rudely interrupted.
Basically, I was into this one. I liked Liliath even though she was anything but good, at least to me anyway. I may not have been super invested in the other four characters that were involved with Liliath – probably just because I was already a Liliath Stan and that’s just me being uber biased – but this was such an interesting standalone journey that I’m super impressed with it. Nix did a great job to me, and while I may not have read his other work from way back then, I am curious to see what other NA books he may have in store.
I may also be an angel plotline ho, and the whole thing with the Ash Blood sickness was something I hadn’t seen before, so I was already cool about it. No big.
So this is one of the first books that I’m doing a playlist for, where the author is a dude! Like, have you noticed that? I’m pretty sure all of them have been women, but I’ll have to double check that to make sure. But in any case, here is yet another playlist that I had a lot of fun with, so I hope that you enjoy it as well!
Looks like Garth Nix is back on my radar, and I’m not even mad about it. I definitely hope that you get to check this book out, it has been out since the beginning of the month so go to your library, get an eBook, something. Just give it a chance and let me know what you think.
Also, thank you so much for visiting my stop on the tour! Be sure to check out the other posts and show some love. Until next time, fam.