ARC Review: Thornbound by Stephanie Burgis

ARC Review: Thornbound by Stephanie BurgisThornbound by Stephanie Burgis

Published by Stephanie Burgis on February 25th 2019
Also by this author: Snowspelled, Scales and Sensibility, Good Neighbors: The Full Collection, Touchstones: A Collection
Genres: Fantasy

Cassandra Harwood scandalized her nation when she became the first woman magician in Angland. Now, she's ready to teach a whole new generation of bright young women at her radical new school, the Thornfell College of Magic…

Until a sinister fey altar is discovered in the school library, the ruling Boudiccate sends a delegation to shut down Thornfell, and Cassandra’s own husband is torn away from her.

As malevolent vines slither in from the forest and ruthless politicians scheme against her, Cassandra must fight the greatest battle of her life to save her love, her school, and the future of the young women of Angland.

Stephanie Burgis is a fresh new voice and I can’t wait to see what she does next. – Ilona Andrews

Thornbound is the second book in the Harwood Spellbook series. It continues Cassandra’s story and pursuit to start the first school of magic for women. The start of the semester isn’t without its obstacles, but Cassandra learns just as much from her students as she taught them.

I absolutely love Cassandra and her personal journey. I heavily identify with part of her personal growth as she learns a very important lesson that will save lives. I won’t spoil it, so you’ll just have to read the book, but it’s a lesson many stubborn people have to learn at some point in their life.

Thornbound is one those books that make you think. The world Stephanie build in the Harwood Spellbook series is one I want to live in, but it’s not perfect. Women might be in power, but equality isn’t there. Not just for women, also for men. Jonathan is paving his own way with his decision not to study magic like other men. Amy wants to be a politician, but she isn’t married to a wizard. Cassandra has studied magic as a woman. They’re all trying to change the status quo in their own way and that’s beautiful.

While Spellswept is a standalone story, it does tell you more about the Thornfell estate and it shares a piece of history to which Thornbound refers. It’s not necessary to have read it to enjoy this one, but it definitely adds another layer. You’ll have a better idea of what the relationships are between the main cast and the supporting cast.

I give Thornbound five stars. I love Stephanie’s writing and this is another great example of her excellent storytelling gift. I love how a light-hearted story can make you think. Don’t forget to check out Snowspelled, book one in the Harwood Spellbook, and Spellswept, a story about Amy and Jonathan.

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