The Wren Hunt by Mary Watson (2018)
YA Fiction | Paranormal/Mythology
“Every Christmas, Wren is chased through the woods near her isolated village by her family’s enemies—the Judges—and there’s nothing that she can do to stop it. Once her people, the Augurs, controlled a powerful magic. But now that power lies with the Judges, who are set on destroying her kind for good.
In a desperate bid to save her family, Wren takes a dangerous undercover assignment—as an intern to an influential Judge named Cassa Harkness. Cassa has spent her life researching a transformative spell, which could bring the war between the factions to its absolute end. Caught in a web of deceit, Wren must decide whether or not to gamble on the spell and seal the Augurs’ fate.”
Expected (Hardcover) Publication Date: November 06, 2018
pooled ink Review:
This is exactly the type of atmospheric novel that I love. Rich with Irish mythology but set in present day, The Wren Hunt is written with a lovely lulling prose and a subtle uneasy air that will have you holding your breath as you turn the page. It was like nothing I expected but rather far more captivating than I could’ve hoped.
That being said I’m not sure it’s a book for everyone, but I hope readers will give it a go. The characters are slow unwinding riddles, the plot is not as it seems, there is darkness and action as well as laughter and light, but overall the story is something told over a midnight fire, found in a long lost journal, or whispered in the forest while you walk alone. Despite the scheming, despite the hunt, despite the enemy lines drawn thick, there remains a whimsical element to it all as magic ties everything together seamlessly with each drop of blood and betrayal.
Wren is an Augur and she’s sent undercover as an intern for Harkness House, run by Judges, in a desperate attempt to save the dwindling magic of the Augur groves. But what was meant to be a simple mission ends up spinning a web of fate she fears she may not escape. While lurking in the den of her enemies she discovers more about their history, more about the strange artist who lived in the woods and went mad, and most surprisingly of all she discovers secrets about herself. Lines between enemy and friend, between right and wrong, blur the longer Wren spends away from home and threaten to collapse under the weight of each secret she unearths.
I really enjoyed this book! I loved the magic, the mythology, the coiled web of characters and fate, and most of all I really was sucked in by the atmospheric way it was told. There’s just this indescribable air to this story that held me captivated, made me wonder about the days of old and if anyone still believes, and that’s what sold it to me but each development in the story is what held me through to the end. Such a unique read! Definitely a recommended read for readers of fantasy and myth.
Purchase Here: The Wren Hunt
Meet Mary Watson!
I grew up in Cape Town where I worked as an art museum custodian, library assistant, actress in children’s musicals, front-of-house duty manager, and university lecturer. My doctorate was in film studies and I’ve always been obsessed with stories.
In 2008, I moved to Galway, Ireland. After The Cutting Room, I knew I wanted to write a fantasy book. When my youngest child was born, I found reading YA books kept me awake during the long nights. I was lost in stories of brave girls. Of magic worlds and dystopias, zombies and vampires, queens and assassins while (almost) everyone around me slept. It was here that the first seeds of The Wren Hunt were planted.