cover image Faebound


Saara El-Arifi. Del Rey, $28.99 (400p) ISBN 978-0-593-72300-5

The beguiling first installment of a new fantasy trilogy from El-Arifi (The Final Strife) introduces a mystical world filled with conflict. Elves were born of the moon, fae were born of the sun, and humans were born of the earth, or so the myth goes. Now, only elves remain, and all is not well. The Forever War between elven tribes has raged on for as long as sisters Lettle and Yeeran have been alive. Yeeran is a decorated soldier determined to help the Waning Tribe win and thrive. Lettle, a diviner, is repulsed by the conflict but driven to prove her worth to her sister. When one of Yeeran’s command decisions ends in tragedy, she’s exiled to the harsh environment outside of the Elven Lands. Lettle and Rayan, one of Yeeran’s soldiers, follow her by choice, and all three find themselves unexpectedly drawn into the world of the fae, creatures they believed were long extinct. Relying on their scant knowledge from old stories, the sisters and Rayan must navigate this strange, underground world, replete with magic, secrets, and romance beyond their wildest imaginings. The worldbuilding is lush and exciting, and the focus on character development and relationships makes for a cast that readers will be excited to revisit in future installments. El-Arifi is off to a great start. (Jan.)