If you follow Susan Dennard at all on social media or through her newsletter (sign up here, it's the best newsletter you'll find!), you’ll know that this book was hard for her to write. With that in mind, I went into Windwitch a little anxious. I’ve loved all of her previous books, but I saw her struggle with this book and it honestly had me a little scared. Truthwitch was a really strong first installment, I mean really strong. My expectations for book two were pretty high.
Turns out, I had nothing to worry about.
Windwitch starts off with, not just a band, but an explosion and continues to build from there. It takes characters I had already fallen in love with, a world that had already engrossed me, and adds to all of that exponentially. The plot went in directions that I never expected and I am so glad that it did. It just goes to show that, contrary to any misgivings she might voice, Dennard is fully in charge of this story and is taking it in exactly the direction it needs to go.
The world of the Witchlands seems so much fuller and grander after reading Windwitch. Every country and race were obviously thought through. The scale of this world feels more adult fantasy to me; the sprawling nations and many-faceted cultures are equal parts refreshing and exciting. I couldn’t wait to see new places in this installment, and can’t wait for the next book to explore even more places that were teased.
The first thing that I loved back when I read Truthwitch was the characters. I instantly fell in love with both Safi and Merik and could not wait to see where Windwitch would take them. The first thing that stood out to me while reading Windwitch was again the characters, but in a very different way than in book one. I can’t even begin to say how much I appreciated Merik’s relationship with his sister, Vivia, who might very well be my new favorite character. Both have POVs in Windwitch, and both were wonderful to read. After years and years of reading about cookie-cutter, perfect, best friend-level sibling relationships, it was so great to read about siblings who didn’t get along, who didn’t like each other, who needed to reevaluate how they viewed each other. That’s the relationship I experienced, and it has always been absent from the books I’ve read. Dennard portrayed it perfectly with Merik and Vivia, and I will forever be grateful.
As far as characters go, another pleasant surprise was Aeduan. I hate to admit it, but in Truthwitch I just wasn’t as drawn to him as many other readers were. He was fine, but I definitely needed to see more of his character before I was ready to pass any sort of judgement. Windwitch gave me more. His character growth, while by no means being the only instance of growth in this book, was by far the most impactful for me. It was amazing to see deeper into Aeduan’s character, even if it was still relatively small glimpses. Now knowing that book three will be titled Bloodwitch and will be Aeduan’s book, it feels even more fitting that his character was one I was newly drawn to in Windwitch.
Even though Windwitch is Merik’s book, the ladies totally dominated its pages. Like I said before, Vivia is a new favorite and she is incredible at every stop. Safi is her delightful self, as usual. Iseult had a bit more depth this time around and I really enjoyed her POVs. The cast of Windwitch as a whole was astounding.
I can keep going. Windwitch is in my top five favorite books ever, and I just can’t say enough good things about it. After reading, I definitely recommend going back and at least glancing through Truthwitch again. There are so many little things that I caught after having read Windwitch that help to make this series as a whole even better. And I’m sure it will be the same with the next three books. I absolutely cannot wait to see what’s in store.
I really implore everyone to check out this series, I promise that you won't regret it. It's a beautifully unique world filled with magic, friendship, sword-fighting, amazing creatures, and masterful writing. I can't recommend it highly enough.
If you want to purchase Windwitch you can do so at any of these sites:
Amazon | B&N | Audible | BAM
If you have yet to delve into the world of the Witchlands, get Truthwitch at any of these sites:
Amazon | B&N | Audible | BAM