My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars
Source: paperback copy courtesy of publisher
What I remember most from Spellcaster is the beginning followed by the ending. It was a great beginning, which I loved, whilst the ending left me a little unbalanced. Steadfast also has a terrific beginning which sets the tone of the book. And again, the ending left me somewhat unbalanced.
It began at the graveyard and ended in a ruin. It was an exciting beginning, at which pace the story was kept then was ramped up for the last 100 pages; I really couldn’t put it down and had to finish it (consequences be damned!). The stakes are a lot higher in Steadfast and Nadia is truly unequal to the forces she’s determined to fight against. Still, this did not undermine her goodness but rather highlights her courage to fight for those she loves. This is what I love about Nadia most though there were moments of frustration with some of her failed / misfired spells (I understand that the author is merely highlighting Nadia’s not-fully-trained-witch status though and sometimes, it’s a little bit funny).
Mateo and Nadia are the sweetest couple! They are so supportive of each other which doesn’t mean that they never exchange angry words but that they work through them. I must admit that now that they’re together, I sort of miss that tension of the first feels (ie. feeling when they first met, first chatted, etc etc etc) but there is a different sort of sweetness here which comes about from being in a relationship. There were times that their focus on each other made Verlaine felt excluded… though that may also be due to Verlaine’s curse.
Verlaine with all her quirkiness and bravery is lonely. She knows only 2 living people who truly love her and despite her understanding of the working of the world, she wishes it was not so. In all this, her courage is a lot more admirable than Nadia because I really don’t know if anyone else can live the way she has had to. Add in to this mix of trio is Asa –ow, he’s hot!, and without revealing too much, let me just say that he’s a very interesting & totally conflicted character. I can’t wait to find out how he’ll turn out later on in the series.
I have really enjoyed Steadfast a lot more than I did Spellcaster. Claudia Gray has woven some truly amazing twists to the story, developed some really interesting characters, and most of all a detailed-dark-and-broody world full of black magic. I can’t wait for the next instalment (which I hear is titled Sorceress, *eep, excitement!*)
Thank you, Harper Collins Australia for providing copy of book in exchange of honest review