Nightspell by Leah Cypess

Four years ago, Callie was forced to leave her home and family as part of an arranged marriage to the prince of Ghostland, despite being too young to marry at the time. Still she remained in Ghostland - essentially as a hostage to ensure a tenuous peace between their two countries.

From the day Callie was sent away, Darri vowed to rescue her beloved younger sister. Finally Darri gets her chance when she and her subtly cunning brother Varis travel to Ghostland to deal with the dangerous inhabitants there. More than a simple rescue mission awaits Darri in Ghostland however. Her sister is much changed, the politics of Ghostland are seemingly endless, and the people of Ghostland themselves prove extremely ruthless. That and the fact that it is almost impossible to tell who is still among the living and who is actually a ghost.

Once again, Leah Cypess has caught me with her unique writing, her unforgettable characters and her fantastic pacing in Nightspell. Even after experiencing the fantastic world building of her debut Mistwood, I was enthralled by the complex territory of Ghostland and its inhabitants. Leah Cypess doesn't write easy characters by any means. With the point of view switching from Darri to Callie to Varis and even various Ghostland inhabitants, you are given time to occasionally mistrust or love every single character. Literally everyone had some secret or other up their sleeve and the added tension of complicated court politics ensured that someone was always up to No Good.  And that includes the enigmatic and devious Clarisse whom you may remember from Mistwood, who true to form, manages to stir up trouble whatever land she happens to reside in.

As one of those authors who respects her readers enough to not have to spell out every single detail within her stories, Leah Cypess leaves much of the puzzle of Nighspell to her audience to discover. It's a quality I highly appreciate actually. It's also a quality that had me continually flipping back pages trying to work out details and the significance of certain passages. It's work, but a type of work that I enjoy as a reader and something that makes the reading process that much more enjoyable in  my book. In other words, Nightspell was one heck of an enjoyable book.

**Be sure to stop in on Friday -- Leah Cypess will be here to share her writing process for Nightspell.

series reading order:
~ Mistwood - my review
~ Nightspell

Because Everyone Likes a Second Opinion:
Eating YA Books review
Kirkus Reviews
My Bookish Ways review

book source: ARC from the publisher


Chachic said...

You've read Nightspell! I think this is the first review that I've seen for this book and it looks promising. Really enjoyed reading Mistwood too.

Holly said...

Oh, I'm so jealous! This looks very different from Mistwood - I like the sound of Ghostland - but I will definitely be checking it out. Thanks for the review!

Michelle said...

Chachic - Trust me, I was giddy when it came in the mail :) Hopefully others like it too, I love Leah Cypess' writing style.

Holly - It is different from MISTWOOD, but in a good way. The world building of Ghostland is incredible. Can't wait to hear what you think of it.