An Enchantment of Ravens follows prodigy painter Isobel as she commissions portraits for the treacherous faeries living near her town. When a portrait portrays one of the faeries as weak, she is whisked to the fairy lands to stand trial for her crime. However, Isobel finds herself attracted to Rook, the fairy determined to make her pay for her crime.
I heard a lot of hype for this book initially since it drew many comparisons to A Court of Thorns and Roses, but then read a lot of disappointing reviews. As a result, I didn’t go in with as high expectations to this book as many other readers. I think this was a benefit for my reading experience. While there were still aspects of this story I felt needed improvement, I never felt disappointed that the story didn’t play out as I hoped.
I think one of the downfalls of this book would be the world building. Since this book is a stand alone, it is difficult to cram in all the nuances and structure to the fairy world. As a result, there were aspects that I didn’t fully understand which made me confused about some character’s motivations or strange events that popped up throughout the novel. I also felt the word building was conveyed in an inefficient and uninteresting way. Isobel and Rook seem to be just walking around the forest in circles to introduce parts of the fairy world without much else happening in the plot.
Another large criticism of the book is the lack of development in Isobel and Rook’s relationship since most of it occurs off the page. This actually didn’t bother me much since I think it would have bored me to read about Isobel and Rook just talking or sneaking glances at each other while she painted her portrait. It just made their relationship come across as even more shallow. Since this book heavily relies on the characters’ love for each other, I just didn’t buy it.
That being said, this book was fairly easy to read. While there were some aspects of how the story unfolded that annoyed me, I still found myself wanting to flip the pages to see what happened next. While not the best book I’ve read this year, I’m sure it won’t be the worst either. I give An Enchantment of Ravens three out of five stars.