Minda’s review of Uprooted by Naomi Novik
What I drank prior: Half a 90s cartoon power hour and the last half-a-bottle of this Zin
Spoiler-free Overview: The wizard who takes one woman every year to hide away in his tower takes the unlikeliest of girls. She discovers her magic and learns more about the evil Wood that’s always lived at her doorstep while balancing court etiquette, magic, friendship, and love.
Spoiler-free Thoughts: I really loved this book! After we read Spinning Silver (link) for book club, everyone was saying how much they loved Uprooted so it shot to the top of my list. The world-building was great, which we know is my main squeeze, and definitely plot-driven. I enjoyed the two mains characters as well and thought the side players were also pretty compelling.
Characters: Our main character Agnesnezka… let’s just call her Ang… I was frustrated with a first since she was a little less curious than say me and her general resistance to magic, but I grew to really love her. The Dragon, grump though he is, was Greta and I liked his arc. As far as villains, I liked the court wizard and Prince Marek. Kasia fell a little (a lot) flat for me, but it’s fine.
Plot: This book was very plot driven—and I was hooked. I liked the heroine’s journey and the malicious Woods. We got a little taste of most aspects of the realm.
World Building: Guys. Novick is a queen so far as world building goes im not-so h opinion. She created an intricate world balancing life in a small village, manipulative court political machinations, and fairytales. The layered story of the original settlers and the Woods was well thought out. Gosh it was so. Freaking. Good.
—SPOILERS Don’t read! Or do, continue to not be you’re mom—
What I hated: Nothing for this entry, I don’t think? Kasia was a little more bland than I liked, but wasn’t a huge deal.
What I disliked: Modtly at the beginning but true throughout, why does Nag ask more questions? Like, what happened to the girls? Why do you take them? Why are you here? So many questions, and the first one which I think is major was never addressed.
What I liked: I was totally there for the relationship between the Drgaon and Ang. The sex scenes really got me going. Their first encounter was probably the hottest sec scene that got dereaiked like ever. I personally didn’t need them to end up together at the end, but not unhappy they did.
What I loved: THE AMAZING WORLD BUILDING. The Wood is complex and layered, the court atmosphere, the camaraderie felt by the townspeople. I thought it was all perfect. Especially when it comes to the Woods, I loved learning about how it came to be with the destroying humans and tree-people just wanting to live in harmony.
What to pair it with: Whiskey Sour. It’s a great take with an old classic feel. & I’m really into these right now.
Rating: 5/5 shots—I just loved