REVIEW: The Hawkweed Legacy - Irena Brignull


The Hawkweed Legacy - Irena Brignull
Published by Orchard Books on 1st June 2017.
My rating; 3.5/5
Book depository purchase link.

The second book in The Hawkweed Prophecy series, The Hawkweed Legacy, is here! Witches, clans, sisterhood and magic - this series is so wonderfully women-centric that I love it. 

In the first book, The Hawkweed Prophecy, the witches are looking for their new queen. If you haven't read this book yet, you might want to pick it up now and come back to this review because it's impossible to talk about book 2 without giving some secrets from book 1 away. Bookmark me...

In this story, it's time for Poppy to step up and be queen. Except, she doesn't want to and the whole plan starts falling apart. Ember and Leo go back to the chaff world but nothing is the same without Poppy. Essentially, they thought life could go on as normal, but it can't. 

This time the novel is split into a range of perspectives and acts as almost a prequel in some ways to show how the past is influencing the present. The timeline splits into Poppy's life now and the history of Charlock's old friend Betony. I enjoyed the beautiful descriptions of Poppy's travels in the opening and the Ember, Leo, Poppy love triangle continues in such a heartbreaking way. So many of these characters as self-sacrificing that it hurts to read. I mean that in the best way.

The story churned by emotions even more as Sorrel becomes such a complex character and I still don't know if I love or hate her. The witch clans are still bubbling with tension and I can't help but wonder, is book 3 when we're going to get an out and out war with full on battle scenes? What's that going to look like? I am so caught up in this building tension that I will definitely be continuing with the series.

Yet, book 2 wasn't 100% perfect for me. Irena Brignull's standard of writing and her enchanting story-telling ways remained completely engaging (come on, those animal descriptions are on point), but I found that I missed a lot of the story elements from Book 1. The narrative was split into more perspectives, meaning less Poppy and Ember time and I also hugely missed their friendship. Okay, Charlock remained a key part of the story, but I had always hoped that Melanie would step up and shine. It felt that some characters were being very clearly left in the past to make way for some new ones, like Betony and Danny.  I was not ready to let go of some of my favourites just yet.

All in all, I don't think anyone could call themselves disappointed with this follow up. 'Even-more-engaged' would be a better description. While book 2 directly picks up from the end of book 1 and takes the Hawkweed girls to new levels of despair and anguish (and me along with them) I remain completely thrilled by this series. I feel like the best is still yet to come.

Let me know your thoughts!

Love, Jess

Thank you to Orchard for my ARC.

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