Boarding school student Talia Morris has no idea her boyfriend, Nathaniel, is a Mystic, let alone second in line to the throne of a secretive, aspirational magical community―one no mortal has ever been allowed to step inside. Until now. Nathanial’s cousin is about to be married in the biggest wedding the magical world has ever seen, and Nathaniel is allowed to bring a date. Talia is the lucky recipient of the golden ticket every Mystic wannabe in the world would kill for―only she doesn’t want it. Talia thinks Mystic worship is lame and stupid and unnecessarily aggrandizes people for being born a certain way. When she finds out Nathaniel is “one of them,” she almost jumps ship. But Nathaniel loves her, and she loves him. So when he begs her to give his family and their community a shot, she reluctantly agrees.
Enter the most fantastical world any mortal has ever seen, and the coolest magical wedding ever. After a few days of bonding with Nathaniel’s family on the island, of seeing how beautiful their magic is and how peaceful their community, Talia’s about to be won over―until the entire wedding party suddenly falls into an unexplainable coma and the community goes on lockdown. Talia, the outsider, is pegged as the culprit and has to do everything in her meager non-power to prove her innocence. As she embarks on a journey to find the truth, Talia soon discovers reality is not all it seems, and her past may put her in more danger than she ever imagined.
In this captivating YA fantasy, Talia must solve a multigenerational mystery and break a curse, all the while being torn between making her family proud and regaining the trust of the boy she loves.
Author: Melissa Landers
Expected Publication Date: 12/6/2022
I want to thank NetGalley and Disney-Hyperion for providing me with an eARC of this book to read and give my honest review.
What drew me in: BOARDING SCHOOL! Every time I see a book with a boarding school I think Harry Potter and I want to read it. BUT I always have to go in with lower expectations because nothing ever lives up to it for me. But I'm always hopeful someone will hit the mark. SCI-FI! I love me some sci-fi. Unfortunately, the book is not quite as sci-fi as it seems it should be,. So if you're going in thinking you're going to be floored by that aspect, turn your expectations down. Also, MELISSA LANDERS: Because I've really liked her previous books I've read, so why not keep reading what she writes! And the COVER I mean it's gorgeous. I'm a sucker for a good cover.
What kept me reading: THE CHARACTERS! I really enjoyed them and wanted to find out more about them. They truly had unique personalities. I do feel like more back story could have happened. More fleshing out so that I could truly connect with them but overall I enjoyed them: the good, the bad, and the ugly!
What I'm not so sure about: THE STORY! I enjoyed how it started but then I just got annoyed. It just didn't seem like it kept a rhythm. The possibility of twists. Which happened but were kind of expected. Also, while it did wrap up, I feel like there's still room for a sequel. I love a good series but am disappointed when I read a book that I feel should be a stand alone and then it doesn't seem to be that way.
Overall: It was a fun read but didn't keep me as pulled in as I would have wanted. I just expected more. Would I read more Landers, for sure. Would I read a sequel, not so sure.