The Book Barrio

A Blog for Fantasy and Romance Readers


YA fantasy

Review: Truthwitch by Susan Dennard


Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy


Truthwitch is about two girls, who have some special abilities that may be prophesied to do who knows what. The two girls are Safi and Iseult. Safi has a truthwitchery gift, she can tell when people are lying. Her ability is so rare that it is almost unheard of. Iseult is Safi’s BFF and threadsister, which means that they have a stronger than average friendship bond. Iseult can sort of feel people’s emotions from the “threads” that come out of them.

One day, chaos ensues when Safi and Iseult have a heist gone wrong and have to hide. Then people suddenly find out that Safi is a truthwitch, and everybody wants Safi so they have to go on the run. Prince Merik, a guy from a poorer kingdom is contracted to help Safi escape in exchange for a trade contract for his country. It gets difficult because everyone else is after Safi, and they have a bloodwitch, who can track people through blood scent, on their trail.

This book was a lot of fun. It was a bit hard to get into at first. We don’t have a clear picture of the plot and the characters’ motivations. There are a lot of unanswered questions, which I do not know if they will be explained later or are simply oversights. Some slight inconsistencies in logic, like how people found out about Safi’s powers and stuff like that. It implies that there might have been a lot more things going on outside of the main characters’ points of view. I also liked that the action was non-stop. I really loved the fantasy world that Susan Dennard built. I wanted to see Safi use her powers some more.

I also feel that this book was not well concluded enough. There were just too many unanswered questions, and just a hint of a prophecy that might be important. I need the shocking revelations and I want to see what kind of path the characters are going to take. It seemed that at the end, only temporary decisions were made and some ambiguous goals were declared. Nevertheless, it’s a good start to a YA fantasy series, and I would definitely read the next book when it comes out.

Rating: 3 Stars



Review: The Rose Society (The Young Elites #2) by Marie Lu

 Genre: Young Adult Fantasy


Once upon a time, a girl had a father, a prince, a society of friends. Then they betrayed her, and she destroyed them all.

Adelina Amouteru’s heart has suffered at the hands of both family and friends, turning her down the bitter path of revenge. Now known and feared as the White Wolf, she and her sister flee Kenettra to find other Young Elites in the hopes of building her own army of allies. Her goal: to strike down the Inquisition Axis, the white-cloaked soldiers who nearly killed her.

But Adelina is no heroine. Her powers, fed only by fear and hate, have started to grow beyond her control. She does not trust her newfound Elite friends. Teren Santoro, leader of the Inquisition, wants her dead. And her former friends, Raffaele and the Dagger Society, want to stop her thirst for vengeance. Adelina struggles to cling to the good within her. But how can someone be good, when her very existence depends on darkness?


This is the second book in a series by author, Marie Lu. It’s a bit like X-men, where different characters have different powers, but this one’s set in a fantasy world. If you haven’t read it yet, book 1 can be found here.

Oh wow. What a dark book. It almost feels like the heroine is actually the villain. This is like reading a story told from the villain’s point of view. Starting from events of the first book, Adelina is off on a journey to search for other Young Elites like her, so she can take her revenge on the Inquisition. As great as her illusionist powers can be, she still needs a crew if she is to overthrow the kingdom.

In fairness to Adelina, the Inquisition really deserves whatever vengeance Adelina is planning to unleash. It’s an abusive government, led by a deranged man who thinks that all people with special abilities – Young Elites, should be extinguished. They rule with fear and oppression.

Adelina’s character becomes harsher, ruthless and more extreme than ever. She was abused and hated on by her father. She was betrayed by her friends and now she wants revenge. The anger and fear only serve to feed her powers. But despite it all, she still tries to cling to her humanity. She misses being one of the Daggers. She recalls the friendship and camaraderie they had. She has her sister, Violetta, who is supportive of her. And she makes new elite friends.

We get to meet new characters with some wicked special abilities that definitely make the story interesting. There may even be a possibility of another love interest for Adelina. But it’s too early to tell.

I can’t really say much without giving the story away. All I can say is that it’s not your typical Young Adult novel with heroic deeds and righteous quests and swoon-worthy hero. This is a villainous story that will leave you confused on whether to root for the main characters or not. And I freaking loved it.

Rating: 4 Stars

Amazon | Goodreads

What the Barrio is Currently Reading

I usually like to start new books even though I’m still in the middle of another book. It’s just that I really get excited when I find a new book that I want to read, so why not take turns reading them right?

Here are some of the books I’m currently reading.

Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson

There’s no proper way to describe this book. All I can say is that 10% in, and it made me laugh in the middle of a foot spa. It’s a non fiction, but definitely worth the time.

The Rose Society by Marie Lu 


This is a bit like X-men but set in a YA Fantasy world. The heroine has the ability to manipulate illusions. I’m enjoying it so far.

Take note: this is book 2 in a series. If you liked Marie Lu’s Prodigy series, then you might like this one as well. Book 1, The Young Elites, can be found here.

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