Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Winter of Witches Review: Breath of Frost by Alyxandra Harvey

Blurb: Beyond the manicured gardens and ballrooms of Regency London lies a dangerous, alluring underworld accessible only to those with magical power. Emma, Gretchen and Penelope have that power. The cousins are young, beautiful and captivating, and they are witches. But controlling their new-found gift is not the only challenge they face. While evading fortune-hunters and marriage proposals, they must unravel a dark family secret – one that reveals why, until now, their magical skills have been concealed; one that brings them face to face with a deadly foe . . .

The charming and irresistible Cormac Fairfax is willing to help. But can she trust a keeper of the Order who has secrets of his own to hide?

Review: Witches! Witches! And more witches! Finding Breath of Frost was purely happenstance...really, really HAPPY happenstance.

We're introduced to a trio of cousins whose powers have just been unbound--unbeknownst to them. 

Breath of Fire really does open en media res...we're pluck down in the middle of a regency debutante ball and meet our heroines Emma (main protag for this book), Penelope and Gretchen as things really start to hit the fan. It's our job as the reader to piece together who's who in this ensemble cast as the pages (lots and lots of them) progress.  Throw in one adorable character named Cormac who's got this burning hot love for Emma but who's basically cast as her foil and you get the idea. 

Wild teenage emotions and real, unbound power...what could go wrong?

In this witching world, there are old order witches, the Order of the Iron Nail that oversees them and a few rogue witches/warlocks wandering around. A trio of terrifying rogue witches, the Greymalkins, have been loosed from the pits of hell and the body count is rising. Meanwhile, everyone is blaming the Lovegrove cousins for all the mayhem thanks to their mothers' serious abilities and penchant for bending the Order's iron-clad rules.

There was a lot to love about this book--Harvey did a great job balancing her three mains and giving them each distinct voices and personalities. I'm assuming that, because we're dealing with a series, each of the cousins will get their own time in the spotlight...I can't wait for Gretchen's story!

Harvey has a way with humor, too...there were so many conversations in the book that had me laughing aloud at the banter. Not to mention one of our characters sprouts...ahem..antlers at one point in the story? Color me impressed... It was a great moment that forced our character to accept who she was despite others' reactions to her. Well done!

The book was long, don't get me wrong, but the author did a great job stringing me along with twists and turns and really, just introducing me to the huge cast of players who will play vital roles in the coming books. The magical abilities of our witches, good and bad, were a neat blend of powers that complemented and foiled each other...Emma's ability to influence the weather in particular was one of my favorites.

Bottom line...Breath of Frost was a great way to kick off my #WinterWitches book review series and it's highly recommended.

Book two, Whispers of the Dead is available now, and I'll be reviewing it next week. Stay tuned!


Title: Breath of Frost

Series: The Lovegrove Legacy, Book One

Author: Alyxandra Harvey

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Price: $7.55 (Kindle)

Author Website:

Author Twitter: @AlxyandraH

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