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Truthwitch by Susan Dennard


by Susan Dennard

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Showing 1-5 of 36 (next | show all)
*Pirates, Mages, and Nobles.*

At first, I almost stopped reading Truthwitch. Why?

Well, the first chapter didn’t make much sense to me. Sure, it’s the start of a story-long chase but I feel like it wasn’t really captured in a way that makes the reader realize it’s immediate significance.

The setting wasn’t too clear at first: I knew our two heroines were near a cliff or some such but that was it.

*Moving on: Why I Actually Came to Love this Story*

Our two young heroines, Safi (a rare Truthwitch) and Iseult (a thread witch) find themselves hunted by a ruthless Bloodmage-assassin, just as the twenty-year truth between kingdoms is ending.


I loved both Safi and Iseult. I related to Safi because of her stubborn attitude and to Iseult because of her greater connection to mother nature (born in a nature-dwelling tribe.) Both characters had me cheering them on through the entire book. There wasn’t a single moment I doubted either of them.

*An Incredible Magic System:*

The magical system Susan Dennard describes is intricate and well thought out. I could easily picture each mage’s unique gift and found many of the facts about such magic intriguing. I tucked many of them away in the back of my mind, where I was able to recall them at a moment’s notice.

I found the Bloodwitches to be the most mysterious of them all. There wasn’t too much detail given as to their origins and abilities, so I hope any subsequent books go into more detail.


Although slow to start, the pace quickly picked up after the first chapter or two, so I would definitely encourage you to be patient with this book until at least that far to see what I mean.


Several themes leaped out at me while reading.
Such themes include:

.Friendship & Loyalty
.The Greater Good
.Family Ties

Each of these themes is explored in great depth, whether you first realize it or not. It certainly took me some time to realize this many existed within Truthwitch’s pages.


Truthwitch actually surprised me several times. I hadn’t expected Safi to be chased down by rival ships on the open ocean, nor had I at first expected any sort of romance to exist.

But it lingers, dear reader, in a most delicious way.

Pirates, Magic, Nobility. And a twenty-year truce, about to blow over.

My rating? 4/5 stars. ( )
  Daxmunro | Dec 31, 2018 |
Truthwitch by Susan Dennard is a wild ride into a new world of myth and magic. Welcome to the Witchlands. Safiya and Iseult are two unusual witches. One- Safi- bears the burden of a rare type of witchery. She is a Truthwitch, her magic granting the ability to tell truth from lie. Iseult is a Threadwitch of the Nomatsi, though one who cannot create Threadstones, and cannot control her emotions like a proper Nomatsi Threadwitch. She fled her tribe years before, unable to follow in her mother's footsteps. The pair are more than just best friends. They are threadsisters. Only Heart-threads are closer.

A caper gone wrong, and a plot years in the crafting, sets the pair on a life-altering path. Pursued by a deadly Bloodwitch named Aeduan for the attempted robbery from one of the Dalmotti Guildmasters, the pair are separated when Safi's uncle Eron demands her presence at a banquet hosting the nations of the Twenty Year Truce where the Cartorran Emperor has an important announcement to make. Unwelcome due to her Nomatsi heritage, Iseult makes her way back to the Midenzi Nomatsi enclave. However, neither girl's night goes as expected. They manage to meet back up, only to be attacked by Aeduan. Rescue comes in the form of the fiery Admiral Merik of Nubrevna, much to Safi's dismay. The Admiral has a much needed trade contract dependent upon getting Safiya to the port town of Layna without her blood being spilt. Sea foxes, Bloodwitchery, and other mishaps, many created by Safi herself, make this increasingly difficult for Merik. Can he succeed in his objective or will his agreement fall to ruin?

I fell in love with this world from page one! With rich worldbuilding, and compelling characters, Dennard has opened the door to a storyworld you'll want to visit again and again. I can't believe I've not read this yet! I liked all the major characters, though I did often want to thwack Safi for making things more difficult than needed for Merik. It took her seeing Nubrevna for herself to understand just how vital the trade agreement was for him.

I hope Corlant and the Midenzi are revisited in a later book. That storythread seemed to have a major part, but it wasn't explored deeply in Truthwitch. I also want to know more about the inherited Nihar rage Merik suffers from. He seems able to control his temper for the most part, though sometimes it gets away from him. Is it related to his magic? Vivia, his sister, doesn't have the same Witchery. Nor does Kullen, Merik's threadbrother and first mate, seem to be plagued with rage. Pulmonary problems are another story… Poor Kullen. Temper aside, or possibly because of it, Merik was my favourite character. It's clear he cares for his crew and his people. He's an honourable man, and one who sticks to his word. Even when that word is to lock up Safi for disobedience that endangers his crew. He's not as heartless as she thinks at first. And Aeduan! I want to know more about him!!

I do wish we'd learned more about how Witcheries manifest in the young, how they are trained, what dictates the type of Witchery a person has. It seems a person is born with their specific brand of magic, rather than having generic magic that is then honed to specific Witcheries. The fact Merik and Vivia have magic, but different Witcheries makes it seem specific types do not follow bloodlines, though likely the predisposition towards Witchery in general does.

If you love magic and intrigue, this series is well worth checking out! Can't wait to read the next in the series!

***Many thanks to the Netgalley and Pan Macmillan/ Tor for providing an egalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. ( )
  PardaMustang | Nov 28, 2018 |
Really enjoyable lady-centric fantasy with adventure, sass, and a great magic system. Will be reading the next one for sure. ( )
  emeraldreverie | Nov 15, 2018 |
The treaty has held for many years but now it's crumbling and at the centre of this is Safiya and Iseult. Two friends who want some adventure but not as much as is heading their way.

Iseult is a truthwitch and that skill is rare, now she want to try to hide this and have some freedom but a ball and the handsome Merik might make her wonder about possibilities. Then there's kidnapping, chases, a seemingly deathless bloodwitch and a lot of shennigans.

It was an interesting read with interesting characters. It's did have some moments where the story stuttered a bit but overall I want to read more in this series. ( )
  wyvernfriend | Sep 25, 2018 |
love love love! Truthwitch had me on the edge of my seat the whole way through! 5 out of 5 stars! ( )
  ReadingwithLynn | Sep 25, 2018 |
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For my Threadsister, Sarah
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Everything had gone horribly wrong.
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"On a continent ruled by three empires, some are born with a 'witchery,' a magical skill that sets them apart from others. In the Witchlands, there are almost as many types of magic as there are ways to get in trouble--as two desperate young women know all too well"--Front jacket flap.… (more)

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