Author: Gennifer Albin
Year Published: 2012
My Department of Alterations Review
Synopsis: Enter a tangled world of secrets and intrigue where a girl is in charge of other’s destinies, but not her own.
Sixteen-year-old Adelice Lewys has always been special. When her parents discover her gift—the ability to weave the very fabric of reality—they train her to hide it. For good reason, they don’t want her to become a Spinster — one of the elite, beautiful, and deadly women who determine what people eat, where they live, how many children they have, and even when they die.
Thrust into the opulent Western Coventry, Adelice will be tried, tested and tempted as she navigates the deadly politics at play behind its walls. Now caught in a web of lies and forbidden romance, she must unravel the sinister truth behind her own unspeakable power. Her world is hanging by a thread, and Adelice, alone, can decide to save it — or destroy it.
Review: This book was everything I hoped it would be and also so much more. I wish more books were like Crewel - it was seriously that good. Everything about the world building and the characters and the story and all of the minor details that start to come together make this book beautiful and thrilling and completely unforgettable.
I loved so much about this book that I don't even know where to start. I guess with the world-building? Albin's world is simple, but complex. The Guild controls everything, with the help of the Spinsters, and normal people lead pretty normal and simple lives. It's amazing how Albin weaves (haha) all of these different things together to make a society that isn't terribly unbelievable. If there were people who could weave the very fabric of time and the universe, I imagine it would result in something exactly like what Albin writes about. And then when Adelice describes hat the weave looks like... I seriously felt like I could see it myself. It's awesome, and I want to know so much more about this world.
The characters in the world are also incredible. Adelice is confused, but she's still strong. The more I read, the more invested I became in her well-being and in her story. I wanted to hug her when she was sad, and celebrate with her when she was happy. She grows up quite a bit in this book, and she learns things that no normal girl should have to learn (not that Adelice is anywhere close to normal). She has to deal with so many different things, and never gives up on wanting to learn the truth - even if it means sacrificing the things she holds dearest. I admire her, and can't wait to find out more about her in the rest of the series.
The more minor characters are all very nicely written as well. Jost and Erik are surprising and charming, and although I'm definitely Team Jost right now, I'm interested to see where the romance goes in the next book. Speaking of the romance, it was slow-paced and believable, and that was a really nice change of pace from the whole "love at first sight" thing. While I also enjoyed the heroes and the villains, I think my favorite characters were the ones who were somewhere in the middle. They waiver between which "side" they support, and I think that really helped move the story along.
Albin's pacing is also very well done. She takes time to give you necessary and important details, and to drop hints about future events, but it never slows the story down. Things also don't happen so quickly that you might miss something if you aren't paying close enough attention. This was a fairly easy read, and I found myself not wanting to put it down to even sleep or eat.
I could really gush about how beautifully written this book is all day, but I don't think it will do it enough justice. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys an excellent sci-fi read, regardless of if you're a fan of YA or not. I don't even know what to compare this book to, because it's not like anything I've ever read. I'm so excited to read the next book in this series, especially since it comes out soon! Definitely do NOT miss this book. A 5/5 from me. One of my favorites I've read this year.