Title: Heart of Mist
Author: Helen Scheurer
Genre: YA / Fantasy
Series: The Oremere Chronicles
Synopsis: In a realm where toxic mist sweeps the lands and magic is forbidden, all Bleak wants is a cure for her power.
Still grieving the death of her guardian and dangerously self-medicating with alcohol, Bleak is snatched from her home by the Commander of the King’s Army, and summoned to the capital.
But the king isn’t the only one interested in Bleak’s powers.
The leader of an infamous society of warriors, the Valia Kindred, lays claim to her as well, and Bleak finds herself in the middle of a much bigger battle than she anticipated. (taken from Goodreads)
Welcome to my stop on the Heart of Mist PH Blog Tour! To be honest, I was worried I wouldn’t be able to get a post up on my assigned tour date. I had midterms and papers due the past week so I barely had time to read. Luckily I managed to finish the book within a day. Literally ten minutes ago. Took a lot of nonstop reading and I basically ended up ignoring my friends the entire day but hey, it was totally worth it! I have a lot to say about this book but I’ll keep this review short cause my eyes are waaaay too tired.
I think the best thing by far about this book is that the protagonist, Bleak, self-medicates using alcohol. For all the fantasy books that spend a chunk of the setting in taverns, you hardly ever see a character with an alcohol problem. Or… I don’t know, maybe I just haven’t looked hard enough. I’m sure there’s a fantasy book out there that features an alcoholic, but probably not a YA book. Not to mention, the protagonist is a female, and the last I checked, we don’t get female alcoholics all that often either (or at all). Great stuff. What’s great about it too is that her alcoholism isn’t glorified but it doesn’t just magically go away, either. Bleak’s life takes a drastic turn but her lifestyle remains the same. She struggles with withdrawals, constantly craves alcohol, and can’t help herself when presented with the opportunity to drink herself into a stupor. Of course, this is something that Bleak has to overcome sooner or later, but I’m really glad Scheuerer is taking her time with it. Wouldn’t be too realistic for Bleak to suddenly sober up just because she is thrown into a life-changing adventure.
The book was also surprisingly more diverse than I expected. We also get a character who’s blind (I have much love for them) and hints of an F/F pairing. Heart of Mist definitely deals with various social issues and more mature themes–the sort of issues and themes that we rarely see in YA.
Something else I thought I should point out is that the romance is minimal. In fact, I didn’t notice it all that much while I was reading. There were hints of certain characters having feeling for one another, snippets of jealousy here and there, but it’s more of a side thing. Not once did the romance impede the main plot, which was pretty great! I didn’t have to worry about some kind of love triangle blooming or anything.
That said, the writing wasn’t always its best. I thought some parts didn’t flow so well, plus a few clunky and repetitive sentences here and there. Also, I didn’t expect so many PoVs. I’m perfectly fine with multiple PoVs and while the several PoVs in the book didn’t bother me, there was one that I felt sort of “eh” about. The PoV constantly brought me out of the story for some reason. The pacing was a bit off as well at times. Despite the minor gripes, I still very much enjoyed Heart of Mist!
So… what now, you ask?
Well, you can enter this awesome giveaway and win a copy of Heart of Mist!
Or you can buy it on Amazon!
Definitely check out Shealea’s post kickstarting the tour!
Aaand lastly, don’t forget to join us for the #MistPH Twitter chat on the 27th!