Having been a huge fan of Beyond the Black Door, In the Ravenous Dark was one of my most anticipated reads. Promising a queer fantasy with spirit powers, you’ll always get me! Pretty much any queer fantasy actually…Keep reading this book review for my full thoughts.
In Thanopolis, those gifted with magic are assigned undead spirits to guard them—and control them. Ever since Rovan’s father died trying to keep her from this fate, she’s hidden her magic. But when she accidentally reveals her powers, she’s bound to a spirit and thrust into a world of palace intrigue and deception.
Desperate to escape, Rovan finds herself falling for two people she can’t fully trust: Lydea, a beguiling, rebellious princess; and Ivrilos, the handsome spirit with the ability to control Rovan, body and soul.
Together, they uncover a secret that will destroy Thanopolis. To save them all, Rovan will have to start a rebellion in both the mortal world and the underworld, and find a way to trust the princess and spirit battling for her heart—if she doesn’t betray them first.
(Disclaimer: I received this book from Netgalley. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)
You can pretty much summon me with blood magic, ancient Greek influences, and queer fantasy. One of my favorite elements of In the Ravenous Dark was the queerness. Not only is Rovan pansexual (YAY!), but there is so much casual queerness all across the spectrum and also features a polyamorous relationship! Major win on that front and it was also just so lovely to read about this queer accepting fantasy world. The characters in In the Ravenous Dark have to my favorite element with my faves being Rovan and Japha.
Rovan’s character development, while I would have liked a bit more space for it to bloom, was one of my favorite elements. As readers we are able to see her grow, make mistakes, and find fuel for her fire. Embrace your power and let it all burn – is the mantra I have for every book basically. Especially in a system where women are used and hides dark secrets in every corner. I also loved the found family that Strickland highlights, and celebrates. I also really loved the, what I thought was, Greek inspirations in the world!
I think my main complaint might be that the ending felt like it was hastily wrapped up. And there were some romantic elements that seemed a little rushed. There were plot twists and revelations aplenty, but I felt like I, and the characters, needed a bit more space to explore their feelings and the consequences of these events. Overall, In the Ravenous Dark examines if we are really in control of our own destiny and fate. It also looks at what we will sacrifice when push comes to shove.
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