**Disclaimer: I was given a free e-ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley.**
Title The Girl of Hawthorn and Glass (Metamorphosis #1)
Author Adan Jerreat-Poole
Even teenage assassins have dreams.
Eli isn’t just a teenage girl — she’s a made-thing the witches created to hunt down ghosts in the human world. Trained to kill with her seven living blades, Eli is a flawless machine, a deadly assassin. But when an assignment goes wrong, Eli starts to question everything she was taught about both worlds, the Coven, and her tyrannical witch-mother.
Terrified that she’ll be unmade for her mistake, Eli seeks refuge with a group of human and witch renegades. To earn her place, she must prove herself by capturing the Heart of the Coven. With the help of two humans, one motorcycle, and a girl who smells like the sea, Eli is going to get answers — and earn her freedom.
Release Date May 16, 2020
Witches and assassins? This book had so much going for it! I was really excited to be chosen to receive an ARC on NetGalley.
Some Things I Liked
- Rich descriptions. Adan Jerreat-Poole created a lush fantasy world filled with descriptions that made you feel like you were sitting and watching the story unfold with your own eyes. The language reminded me of the way Shea Ernshaw describes witchcraft and the human / witch relationship in her novels, The Wicked Deep and Winterwood.
- Strong premise. I really liked where the story started. I thought the idea of witches “making” assassins do to their bidding was an interesting concept and I interpreted Eli’s struggle as a crisis of identity. I thought it was a well-crafted metaphor for finding your place in the world.
One Thing I Wasn’t Crazy About
- While the story had a strong start, the plot fizzled in the middle for me and really took a dive near the end. I was confused at certain parts of the story and I found myself questioning some of the fundamental concepts of the world building that were introduced at the beginning of the novel.
A Note About Language
This was the first book I had ever read with a nonbinary gender character. This character identified with the pronouns “they/them”. At times, I found that because of the language, I was a bit confused over how many characters were in a scene. As a reader, it was a challenge to un-train my mind to think of “they” as a plural pronoun, as it can now be used to represent a single person, such as in this context. I thought this was an interesting language element of this story and I applaud the writing style for incorporating it so well.
I won’t say that I wouldn’t continue with this series. But, it’s not a drop everything and pick up the next book kind of series, for me. The ending of this installment left me curious but not desperate for the next volume.
I enjoyed several aspects of this book. I loved that I could explore an aspect of language that I was previously unfamiliar with. I thought the descriptions were lush and filled with detail. And, lastly, I love books about witches. The story fell short for me, but there are some good bones here.
Recommendations for Further Reading
- Furyborn by Claire Legrand – if you liked the ideas of converging worlds and characters who are trying to find themselves, give this series by Claire Legrand a try.