The Merciful Crow

Margaret Owen. Holt, $18.99 (384p) ISBN 978-1-250-19192-2
In this visceral fantasy, a young woman from the land’s lowest caste must protect Phoenix Prince Jasimir and his Hawk bodyguard Tavin from the murderous machinations of a queen in order to secure survival for her people. Fie is chief-in-training of a band of Crows, who are as reviled as they are necessary; they alone can safely dispose of plague victims and grant mercy killings to them when appropriate. But when a pair of corpses turns out to be nobility on the run, Fie and her crew are drawn into a desperate scheme that pits them against a host of enemies. Pursued throughout hostile territory and gradually stripped of allies and resources, Fie must learn to trust her newfound companions while mastering her Crow-given ability to channel magic through the bones and teeth of the deceased. Owen’s debut is a passionate blend of adventure and intrigue wrapped around strong worldbuilding and a unique magic system. Fie is prickly, adaptive, and fierce, the perfect foil for both privileged prince and increasingly sympathetic guard Tavin, for whom she develops feelings. Memorable and filled with diverse characters with fluid sexualities and identities, this tale is both a satisfying standalone and the first half of a planned duology. Ages 14–up. Agent: Victoria Marini, Irene Goodman Literary Agency. (July)
Reviewed on : 05/23/2019
Release date: 07/30/2019
Genre: Children's
Compact Disc - 978-1-250-21190-3
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