Series: The Witchlands #0.5
Published by Tor Teen on February 13, 2018
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Format: eBook, Audiobook
Amazon, Audible, Audiobook, Barnes & Noble
Set a year before Truthwitch, Sightwitch follows Ryber Fortiza, the last Sightwitch Sister as she treks deep underground to rescue her missing best friend. While there, she encounters a young Nubrevnan named Kullen Ikray, who has no memory of who he is or how he wound up inside the mountain. As the two journey ever deeper in search of answers, and as they brave one close call after another, a tentative friendship forms between them—one that might one day grow into something more.
Sightwitch is told through Ryber’s journal entries and her sketches, as well as through supplementary materials (such as other journals, pieces of songs, clippings from history books, flashbacks, etc.). Though meant as a companion novella, this story serves as a set up to Bloodwitch as well as an expansion of the world.
Is a 0.5 novella something you should read in a series? Well, it depends on the series in question, and for the Witchlands series, I would say definitely yes, but you don’t want to read it first. That is also the tricky part of adding a prequel to a series later. When should your readers actually read it? For Sightwitch ,I would say that you should have at least read Truthwitch to have a semi-understanding of threads, cleaving and some of the basic lore for the series. But as long as you have one of the full length novels under your belt, you’ll be fine.
Novellas as companions to series usually aren’t my thing. Except for a few of my absolute favorite authors and worlds, I don’t normally make a point to read them. But when I saw this was how Ryber and Kullen met, I was intrigued with their story. However, this is so much more, it is also an explanation to some of the lore behind the Witchlands Series and the twelve Paladins.
The story is all told as journal entries and that does take a moment to get used to. But we don’t just get Ryber’s entries, there are some from Tanzi and one Eridysi, one of the Sightwitches from over a thousand years ago and a few other small entries. Ryber and Tanzi are best friends and even more than that, Threadsisters, so when Tanzi is called into the mountain by The Mother and never comes out again, Ryber is determined to find a way to save her from the sleep that has claimed her.
While I liked learning what it was like at the convent where Ryber grew up, part of the real meat of the story for me was the journal entries from Eridysi. These tell the tale of life with the twelve Paladins and how six turned on six and then one turned on them all. When that happened there was a huge war and that is when the magic of the world changed again. We learn of the Paladins and how they live many lives and I think it will be interesting to see how that will play into Bloodwitch.
The beginning takes a little to get into as it is just the day-to-day life of Ryber, and establishes her connection to the Sightwitches, and her Threadsister Tanzi. But once she goes into the mountain to save her sister witches, it is a lot of action.
I received the first 100 pages from Netgalley as preview and then bought the audio. The audio is really fantastic. There are two narrators – one specifically for Ryber’s journal entries and then another Eridysi’s journals from the past. Both really perform the story and I especially liked how Ryber’s narrator used an accent that seemed to come from some Islands. The narration completely added to my enjoyment of the second half of the story I listened to.
Listen to a clip here:
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