Review copy was received from NetGalley. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Witchmark by C.L. Polk
Series: The Kingston Cycle #1
Published by Tor on June 19, 2018
Amazon, Barnes & Noble
In an original world reminiscent of Edwardian England in the shadow of a World War, cabals of noble families use their unique magical gifts to control the fates of nations, while one young man seeks only to live a life of his own.
Magic marked Miles Singer for suffering the day he was born, doomed either to be enslaved to his family's interest or to be committed to a witches' asylum. He went to war to escape his destiny and came home a different man, but he couldn’t leave his past behind. The war between Aeland and Laneer leaves men changed, strangers to their friends and family, but even after faking his own death and reinventing himself as a doctor at a cash-strapped veterans' hospital, Miles can’t hide what he truly is.
When a fatally poisoned patient exposes Miles’ healing gift and his witchmark, he must put his anonymity and freedom at risk to investigate his patient’s murder. To find the truth he’ll need to rely on the family he despises, and on the kindness of the most gorgeous man he’s ever seen.
I’m not often influenced by the cover of a book but I loved this cover. Witchmark is also the first in the Witchmark series and has magic.
I enjoyed the world-building of a unique time and place. It had enough details for realism but not to be overwhelming. The feel is historical, sort of steampunk. Each kingdom has its own sorts of magics and there is fighting between kingdoms. There is also definitely a class system. smh. There always some greedy bastards who not only have to be in charge of a kingdom and take everything for themselves while making others work hard but then they also want to take over more land and workers.
Miles is a likeable character. He is a doctor and compassionate for the all classes, those with magic and those who don’t have it. He fought in the war as a healer and now treats soldiers at a hospital with mental issues after a war. He has some great friends and some serious family issues. I loved Miles and wanted him to succeed.
The end of the war and the family issues come to a head, along with a new friendship. There is a bit of romance. A suspected murder and a mysterious PTSD of his patients lead him on a wild ride at great personal risk. A great start to a new series – I will be reading. The sequel is Stormsong.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2018 New Release Challenge