**Disclaimer: I was given a free ARC in exchange for an honest review from the author.**
Title Night (North #2)
Author Alexandria Warwick
Release Date October 8, 2020
After months in captivity, Apaay managed to escape Yuki’s labyrinth with her life. But her freedom did not come without a steep cost. When the Face Stealer, the North’s most notorious demon, calls in her blood oath, Apaay must heed his demand. Debts, after all, must be repaid.
As Apaay attempts to navigate her uprooted life, something dark slithers among the snow-dusted conifers of the North. A long-dead war is unfinished, and there are those who would see it revived. In a place where misplaced loyalty could mean her death, Apaay must look inward to repair her broken soul—for if she cannot place trust in those around her, she might find enemies are closer than they appear.
I applied to be an ARC reader for this title the second I found out Alexandria Warwick was looking! I absolutely loved Below and couldn’t wait to read this sequel. I just finished reading this book last night and it was incredible.
Some Things I Liked
- Plot twists. As I’ve said in many other reviews, it’s very hard to surprise me. I’ve read hundreds of books and have seen many a plot twist so shock factor goes a long way with me. This book had all the drama and twists that even I didn’t see coming. They felt so organic and perfect for the story that I’m disappointed I didn’t see them coming myself. I’m also thrilled that the story kept me guessing so much.
- Mental health representation. Below has some dark themes as North continued that trend. Apaay struggles with her mental health during a large portion of this book. I loved the way the other characters naturally came together to help Apaay through this time. This setting doesn’t have defined concepts of mental health and I loved the way the crew organically rallied around Apaay and gave her space as needed. Her struggle was so raw and felt so real and the other characters’ reactions felt so natural.
- Trans representation. Once again, this setting doesn’t have a formal mechanism for labels or gendering (as compared to the modern world) but, Numiak explains Tulimaq’s feelings regarding his gender so eloquently. I loved seeing the acceptance and understanding without the need for semantics or explanation.
- Moral greyness. This book is filled with morally grey characters and characters whose motivations are not completely known. The Face Stealer, in particular, is a character that you’re not sure if you can trust. He was working with Yuki in book one, but he’s also proven himself to be loyal to his friends. I loved the fact that the characters are not cut and dry, good or bad. They all have feelings, they all made mistakes.
- Slow burn enemies to lovers. Seriously, when are Numiak and Apaay going to get their act together. I ship them and I will not have anyone tell me otherwise. I also ship Ila and Tulimaq (but not as much after reading that ending!).
I’m obsessed with this series. The fact that book 3 doesn’t even have a name yet is positively devastating. I can’t wait to keep reading and I want everyone I know to read this series so we can scream about how much we love it together.
This book was very different from Below in all the best ways. The cast of characters expanded and my favorites from Below had so much growth. I also loved that the world expanded into so much more than just one myth and one labyrinth. I can’t wait to keep reading this series and I can’t wait to read all of Alexandria Warwick’s other future works.
Recommendations for Further Reading
- Untitled (North #3) by Alexandria Warwick – I have absolutely no doubt, book 3 will be phenomenal. Show it some love by adding it to your GoodReads TBR today!
- The Kinder Poison by Natalie Mae – if you enjoyed the enemies to lovers and slow burn vibes, check out this 2020 release.
- The Demon Race by Alexandria Warwick – if you enjoyed the writing style here, try Alexandria’s other book.