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A Treason of Thorns
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A Treason of Thorns
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Dark, gripping, and utterly unique, this atmospheric historical fantasy from critically acclaimed author Laura E. Weymouth is perfect for fans of The Hazel Wood and Caraval.Violet Sterling has spent...
Dark, gripping, and utterly unique, this atmospheric historical fantasy from critically acclaimed author Laura E. Weymouth is perfect for fans of The Hazel Wood and Caraval.Violet Sterling has spent...
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  • Dark, gripping, and utterly unique, this atmospheric historical fantasy from critically acclaimed author Laura E. Weymouth is perfect for fans of The Hazel Wood and Caraval.

    Violet Sterling has spent the last seven years in exile, longing to return to Burleigh House. One of the six great houses of England, Burleigh's magic kept both the countryside and Violet happy.

    That is, until her father's treason destroyed everything.

    Now she's been given a chance to return home. But Burleigh isn't what she remembered. Wild with grief, Burleigh's very soul is crying out in pain. As its tormented magic ravages the countryside, Vi must decide how far she's willing to go to save her house—before her house destroys everything she's ever known.

    A house left unchecked will lead to ruin.

    But I will not let it ruin me.

About the Author-

  • Laura E. Weymouth was born and raised in Ontario; she now lives in western New York, along with her husband, two wild-hearted daughters, a spoiled cat, and an indeterminate number of chickens. She is the author of critically acclaimed The Light Between Worlds and can be found online at www.lauraeweymouth.com.

Reviews-

  • Kirkus

    August 1, 2019
    A young woman must decide between her duties and her desires in this atmospheric fantasy. Violet Sterling knows she has one singular purpose. The daughter of the Caretaker of one of the five Great Houses, sentient buildings "whose vast magic governs the well-being of England," she will take over as Caretaker of the West Country's Burleigh House when her father retires. But nothing works out as she imagined: Nine years after her father commits treason and she is exiled from Burleigh, she returns to find her father dead, the house disintegrating into disrepair, the health of the countryside failing, and her only friend, Wyn, much changed. If Violet does not return Burleigh to its former health and glory by the end of the summer, the King, who holds deeds to all the Houses, will burn it to the ground. Violet knows "A good Caretaker puts her house first....Before king. Before country. Before her own life. Before her heart." Now she must decide how to save Burleigh and see whether, in the process, she can liberate herself. Weymouth's (The Light Between Worlds, 2018) prose is lush and evocative, filled with palpable descriptions and compelling mystery. The Sterling family's steward and housekeeper, a married couple, are Jewish, and mentions of their practice are authentically incorporated. Characters default to white, and there are a few characters of color. Spellbinding. (Fantasy. 14-18)

    COPYRIGHT(2019) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from June 24, 2019
    In this moving 19th-century fantasy, a young woman who has long dreamed of becoming a Caretaker to one of five sentient Great Houses, “whose vast magic governs the well-being of England,” must choose between obligation and love. Upon the death of her father, Violet Sterling becomes responsible for Burleigh House, whose power affects the West Country. But Burleigh is sick following years without a Caretaker, crumbling as its essence spirals out of control, and the King will burn it if Violet can’t reverse things by summer’s end. Her only hope is to find its long-hidden deed and unbind Burleigh from the monarch’s control—the same treasonous act whose mere planning cost her father his life, an act that the House itself is commanded to prevent. Furthermore, the fate of Wyn, Violet’s beloved childhood companion, is also tied up in Burleigh’s survival. With lush prose and an eye for atmospheric detail, Weymouth (The Light Between Worlds) adeptly spins a tale in which the heroine is torn between passion and purpose, destruction and duty. The love triangle may involve a sentient place of power, but Weymouth imbues the story with enough emotion that the plot’s final outcome never feels set in stone. Ages 13–up. Agent: Lauren Spieller, TriadaUS.

  • School Library Journal

    September 1, 2020

    Gr 9 Up-In this inventive and atmospheric tale, Weymouth imagines a world in which places have as much soul and heart as the people who live within them. Violet Sterling has grown up believing that she one day will be Caretaker of Burleigh House and, as such, she must put her house before everything else. Burleigh is one of the great houses that has long stabilized the English countryside. However, the house's health is declining-the result of being enslaved to a line of cruel kings. Everything gets worse when Violet's father is convicted of treason and executed, leaving Violet to wonder how she can balance her own desires against her obligation to Burleigh. This book does a beautiful job imagining the ways that a human being and a house might communicate, often wordlessly, through looming clouds, creeping vines, rising mortar, and profusions of thorns. Weymouth is lyrical in rendering the atmosphere around Violet, and these descriptions only make the elements of grief and pain in Violet's story stand out more starkly as her journey progresses. This story is engrossing, grounded in the complex emotions and experiences of its characters. Ultimately, Weymouth creates a unique setting to draw out questions about fate versus free will and duty versus the call of one's heart. Violet is identified as white, and there are secondary characters of color. VERDICT Recommended for readers who enjoy atmospheric writing, strong female leads, and fantastical storytelling.-Talea Anderson, Washington State Univ., Pullman, WA.

    Copyright 2020 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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