Published by 47North on January 21, 2020
Genres: Young Adult, Romance, Fantasy & Magic
A spellbinding story of truce and trickery from the Wall Street Journal bestselling author of The Paper Magician series.
Enna knows to fear the mystings that roam the wildwood near her home. When one tries to kill her to obtain an enchanted stone, Enna takes a huge risk: fighting back with a mysting of her own.
Maekallus’s help isn’t free. His price? A kiss. One with the power to steal her soul. But their deal leaves Maekallus bound to the mortal realm, which begins eating him alive. Only Enna’s kiss, given willingly, can save him from immediate destruction. It’s a temporary salvation for Maekallus and a lingering doom for Enna. Part of her soul now burns bright inside Maekallus, making him feel for the first time.
Enna shares Maekallus’s suffering, but her small sacrifice won’t last long. If she and Maekallus can’t break the spell binding him to the mortal realm, Maekallus will be consumed completely—and Enna’s soul with him.
The Will and the Wilds is a young adult fantasy romance by Charlie N. Holmberg. I really enjoyed this enchanting tale. Anytime a fantasy story talks about magic linked to a kiss, the romantic in me is totally on board. And The Will and the Wilds did not disappoint. I loved the world that the author created and the curious and creepy creatures that inhabit it. These creatures felt unique and different, and they really lent themselves to creating a deeply atmospheric read that I couldn’t get enough of.
In The Will and the Wilds we meet our main character Enna. Enna lives in a small village that has dangerous creatures living in their woods. They are called mystings and they are responsible for a lot of death and destruction in the both the human realm and the other realm- the Wildwood. Enna has a charm that she always wears that alerts her when a mysting is close by. One day, Enna sees her village under attack by another dangerous creature, and Enna has no choice but to venture into Wildwood to try and strike a deal with a mysting for protection and help. Are you thinking this was a bad idea? Because I totally was, and you would be right. But it jump starts us on our adventure into a magical and mysterious world, where souls are bartered and creatures are rampant. A world that had me captivated and enchanted from the very first chapter.
I loved the time period that the book seemed to be set in. The Will and the Wilds transports us to a world of self contained villages and carts and horses . All of it added to the atmosphere of the book. And then there is the romance. Oh, the romance! Maekallus is a type of mysting that consumes human souls with a kiss. Maekallus is also the creature that Enna strikes the deal with. I loved Maekallus. He is devious and dark and oh so interesting as a character. Through a strange turn of events, Maekallus is bound to the human realm, which is causing a slow deterioration of his body. Enna saves him, which results in in a piece of her soul entwining with his. And this is where the story started to really take off for me! Watching Maekallus feel things for the first time, through Enna’s soul was so intriguing and fun for me.
I loved The Will and the Wilds. I thought the characters were great, and the plot was enchanting and fantastic. I do wish there was a slightly larger emphasis placed on world building at the start of the story. I wanted a little more information about the connection of the two worlds, but once the plot got going, I was quickly swept up in the tale and those lack of detailed didn’t bother me. I loved The Will and the Wilds and I can’t wait for more from the author.
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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2020 New Release Challenge
- 2020 Reading Assignment Challenge
- Flights of Fantasy Reading Challenge 2020