My rating: ⭐⭐⭐.5
Publication Date: October 5, 2021
This is a fun start to a new fantasy series about a young introverted nun who gets pushed out of her comfort zone and must take down an unknown force.
Since the age of ten, Artemisia has been a Gray Sister, tending to dead bodies lest they become corrupted and a danger to the living. Artemisia understands the dead, the living, not so much. When it’s time for her class of nuns to be tested to determine their futures, Artemisia plans to fail in order to remain at the convent and continue looking after the dead and avoid human interaction. However, when the convent suddenly comes under attack, Artemisia becomes half-possessed by an ancient revenant and has to contend with sharing her headspace with the snarky spirit. Together, they must unravel a mystery involving saints, nuns, Old Magic, and deception.
I’ve read and loved Margaret Rogerson’s past novels, so I thought this would be no different. While I enjoyed this, I didn’t love it as much as the previous two standalone books; it was still a solid read.
There’s the right amount of atmospheric writing with a couple of heart-pounding action scenes. I took off 1.5 stars because the narration was a tad slow and aimless at times (I read somewhere that the author started another round of editing after e-galleys became available, so the final copy might be less rambling). Overall, I felt that the author introduced the world in easily digestible amounts.
The revenant and Artemisia are the dynamic duo I didn’t know I needed. Their endless banter had me chuckling more than a few times.
I am excited for the sequel.
Thank you to Margaret K. McElderry Books/Simon & Schuster Canada for the arc via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
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