By Colleen W.
*No spoilers beyond the information in the summary
Oh. My. Goodness.
I absolutely adored this book. It’s compiled of everything I love: a fantasy world with a complex and unique magic system, enemies to lovers romance, and incredible, impactful characters. So naturally, I was drawn into the story from the very first page, but allow me to break it down for anyone thinking about picking up Serpent and Dove.
Starting with the setting of the book, author Shelby Mahurin constructs a simply grasped system of both magic and society. Witches are feared and hunted, and the Chasseurs (men devoted to God and the Church) do the hunting. Women are under constant scrutiny, the pungent scent of magic an instant giveaway to a witch’s true identity. And encompassing it all, a lively city containing the lowest and poorest to the most God-fearing and wealthiest citizens. I enjoyed the world immensely and found myself completely immersed in the sights and sounds and smells the characters were experiencing. It was entertaining and vivid and the rules of magic were easy to keep track of, so I was hardly lost or confused.
“A reflection of how differences can divide us but shouldn’t define us, and there is always a bridge between enemies.”
If you’ve read other reviews by me you know that, personally, I love character-driven stories. In order for books to have this, they must have strong, fully-fledged characters. Serpent and Dove certainly delivered. Louise (Lou) Le Blanc and Reid Diggory were incredible main characters with amazing personalities and motives. The entire cast of this book stood apart from one another and pulled on my emotions in different ways. They made me laugh and cry and I was incredibly invested in all of the different character relationships. I thoroughly enjoyed these characters and I cannot wait to read more of them in the sequel.
Aside from that, I loved the actual premise of the story and the pacing of it. The writing flowed nicely and the dialogue was definitely top notch. Everything about this book checked all the right boxes for me.
Overall, Serpent and Dove is a fiery, impactful fantasy filled with characters you can’t help but love. A reflection of how differences can divide us but shouldn’t define us, and there is always a bridge between enemies. I highly recommend this book if you enjoy witches, strong female characters, and that on-the-edge-of-your-seat feeling!
- This is more on the adult side, so keep that in mind.
- The sequel, Blood and Honey, comes out this September!
- You are in for an emotional roller coaster, but I promise it’s worth it.
- This is my favorite new read of 2020 so far!