Friday, May 12, 2017

Uprooted by Naomi Novik

This book was recommended to me by Wendy from Literary Feline (link to her review) and it was fantastic! I normally use my phone on the train (back when I was taking the train) because it's only 10 minutes but this was so good that I decided to use all my free time to read.

Uprooted is hard to explain. There's Agnieszka, a witch whose magic doesn't work the way it usually works, a dragon who's actually a wizard, Kasia, the best friend who was supposed to be taken but wasn't, and a sentient wood. And there are princes and battles and all the usual stuff. It sounds like a lot, but it all goes together so well! In fact, I really liked how the plot moved. Thinking back, it has enough plot for what would probably a trilogy in many books nowadays, but it doesn't feel rushed. It feels perfect in terms of pacing.

The characters are really well-written too. Agnieszka is clumsy and insecure but she has a good heart. The dragon is stern but he's actually a really nice guy. And I really liked Kasia, the best friend who played the part without going over the top. Agnieszka and Kasia are really good friends, but their friendship isn't perfect (they are jealous of each other, a little). I found that made them more believable and the fact that they chose to stick together after knowing that proof that they really were good friends.

The only complaint I have is about the relationship between Agnieszka and the Dragon (which, coincidentally, Wendy also has :D). I feel like they've had a mentor-student relationship the whole time, even if it's contentious, and the sudden swerve into romance was not believable at all. Like, really, it felt unnecessary.

That said, the other relationship - the friendship between Agnieszka and Kasia was very well done and more prominent than the romance so my complaint is a fairly small one.

This is definitely going to be one of my top books for the year. It's a fun and well-written read, much like a fairytale, and if you're into fantasy, you HAVE to pick this up.

(It's available on NLB so there's no excuse if you're Singaporean)

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