Beautifully Written and Thoroughly Engaging | Review: Forest of Souls by Lori M. Lee

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Page Street Kids continues to slay with their highly engaging, diverse YA novels and I'm forever in awe. Forest of Souls is the latest atmospheric release from their lineup--and you definitely need to be keeping an eye out for Lori M. Lee.

Forest of Souls
by Lori M. Lee

Sirscha Ashwyn comes from nothing, but she’s intent on becoming something. After years of training to become the queen’s next royal spy, her plans are derailed when shamans attack and kill her best friend Saengo.

And then Sirscha, somehow, restores Saengo to life.

Unveiled as the first soulguide in living memory, Sirscha is summoned to the domain of the Spider King. For centuries, he has used his influence over the Dead Wood—an ancient forest possessed by souls—to enforce peace between the kingdoms. Now, with the trees growing wild and untamed, only a soulguide can restrain them. As war looms, Sirscha must master her newly awakened abilities before the trees shatter the brittle peace, or worse, claim Saengo, the friend she would die for.

Danger lurks within the roots of Forest of Souls, an epic, unrelenting tale of destiny and sisterhood, perfect for fans of Naomi Novik and Susan Dennard.

Forest of Souls by Lori M. Lee
Rating: ★★★☆ (4.5)         
As always, a copy of this book was provided by the author or publisher in exchange for my honest review. This does not effect my opinion in any way.    

Forest of Souls was on my radar for two reasons: that haunting cover-design stunned me the very second my eyes found it. AND THAT PREMISE. Holy, moly. Love at first sight. Have I ever yelled, "SIGN ME UP?" at my computer screen louder than I did the moment I saw the words destiny and sisterhood?

Probably not. I just knew that I needed this darkly woven fantasy in my life immediately.

Not only was Forest of Souls dark, chilling, captivating, and utterly imaginative, it is the perfect introduction to a brand new series. I could NOT put this book down. Even though it was slow to start, I could feel something electric just bubbling under the surface. When it finally did, I was not disappointed.

If you feel as if you've been hypnotized by the eyes of Forest of Souls cover, just wait until you meet this world. You're really in for it, then. And if you need something atmospheric to get your blood flowing, to really feel your heart-beating, Forest of Souls is destined to be that book for you.

Lori M. Lee has ensured two things. One? This is the YA dark fantasy you've been looking for and I promise you, you cannot miss it. And two? 2021 CANNOT COME QUICKLY ENOUGH. Yes, yes, as a matter of fact I am making grabby hands at my laptop in anticipation of its second installment.

So much about this novel felt unforgettable. Honestly, reading it reminded me of the times I'd read books like Splintered by A.G. Howard or The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert. The writing was so bleak (in a good way!) and yet engaging, I longed to be lost in its prose and to hear only the sound of my own breathing.

To say that I am obsessed with Forest of Souls would be an understatement.
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