Margaret Rogerson’s second novel, following up a New York Times bestseller, establishes her as an exceptional contributor to the vast world of young adult fantasy. Sorcery of Thorns may only be a stand alone novel but its fast pace and intricate magic system has the same impact of an extensive series. Throughout the story, readers are not even given the time to ask what may happen next, due it constantly flashing to the next scene. Rogerson does not give you the chance to grow tired of the plot nor its characters. Rather, by the end of the story, you are left with the yearning for much more of the world she has built.
Sorcery of Thorns is set in Austermeer, a land that offers a beautiful, unique magic system and enticing conflicts. The magic is centered around the concepts of grimoires and sorcerers. We are able to venture in to the intricacies of it all through our protagonist, Elisabeth, an orphan that has grown up in the Great Libraries. She was taken in and raised as a foundling by a woman she knows as The Director. She was raised around these grimoires, books that are alive and hold spells for the use of sorcerers. Growing up the majority of her life isolated, Elisabeth struggles to fit in with most people besides her best friend and doesn’t know anything outside of her life in the Great Library. However, she knows for sure that sorcerers are evil and that is something she has been taught to hold true.
She wants nothing more than to become a warden, containing the responsibility of guarding the kingdom against these grimoires that possess the power to form in to violent monsters. That all goes awry, however, when an incident occurs at the Great Library. Elisabeth is thrust in to a conflict as the one accused of it all. This all sets up for a great story full of action, magic, and even a little romance, instantly becoming a favorite. Everything about this story is set up to be addictive enough to finish in one sitting. The characters are realistic even in a fantasy setting, the world building is interesting, and the magic is unlike anything else.
The fast pace of this stand-alone novel makes it nearly impossible to lose interest in any of the characters or the conflict at hand. Rather, it does the opposite, making you want more and more of what Rogerson offers you. It never feels like enough. Therefore if you are looking for a light and addictive read, Sorcery of Thorns provides the perfect world to venture into for the summer.