Thursday, May 1, 2014

The Wizard's Promise (The Hanna Duology #1) by Cassandra Rose Clarke - Ashley's Review

*I received this book as an eARC from Angry Robot/Strange Chemistry on NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

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Title: The Wizard's Promise (Hanna Duology #1)

Author: Cassandra Rose Clarke
Cover Art: Sarah J. Coleman

Publication Date: May 6, 2014 (US/CAN) 
1 May 2014 (UK)

My Pre-Reading
Paul's Pre-Reading

Cassandra's TOP TEN Wizards

Synopsis: All Hanna Euli wants is to become a proper witch – but unfortunately, she’s stuck as an apprentice to a grumpy fisherman. When their boat gets caught up in a mysterious storm and blown wildly off course, Hanna finds herself further away from home than she’s ever been before.

As she tries to get back, she learns there may be more to her apprentice master than she realized, especially when a mysterious, beautiful, and very non-human boy begins following her through the ocean, claiming that he needs Hanna’s help.


Review: I have loved everything I've read by Cassandra Rose Clarke. Her adult novel, The Mad Scientist's Daughter, was absolutely brilliant and heart-wrenching, and The Assassin's Curse series is one of my favorites of all time. I love the world and the characters and her writing style and I was just so, so happy when I found out about this book and even happier when I got my hands on an early copy. 

The Wizard's Promise was everything I hoped it would be and more. You would think that after two books and two short stories, we'd know as much about Naji and Ananna's world as we'd ever need to. But somehow, Cassandra continues to grow this world even more, and it's just so vast that I don't think we'll ever know everything about it. It's inhabitants and their homes just keep surprising me, and I'm really glad that we got to see a whole other side to things. 

One of my favorite things about this book were all of the subtle (and not so subtle) references to The Assassin's Curse books. This book could totally stand on its own as the beginning of a new series, but I think knowing the characters, the plot, and the world already makes everything richer and brighter. Connections are made that will not make sense to someone who might decide to start with The Wizard's Promise, although enough of an explanation is given that it's probably enough to understand the gist of what happened previously.

I also really loved that this duology focuses on Ananna - who goes by Hanna - and that this Ananna is completely different from the one in the first two book. She's apprenticed to a fisherman and is not a pirate princess. She's never had an adventure. Her magic is tied to the wind. Oh, and she's not on the run from an arranged marriage. She's her own Ananna, and the only thing that the two girls share is their name. I really enjoyed watching Hanna learn things on her own and grow into her magic abilities and figure things out without being able to really rely on anyone. 

I am just so excited about this series and this world, and I can't wait to read the next book! I want to know how Hanna's story pans out, how she's able to help the beautiful, non-human boy save their world, and if she ever gets to train under a real wizard! If you've read The Assassin's Curse and  The Pirate's Wish, you will NOT want to miss The Wizard's Promise! If you're looking for a fantasy book with lots of magic, pirates, and even some assassins, you should definitely check out this series. It's just so good! 5/5! 


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