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 always kept the countryside well. And as a child, this magic kept Violet happy, draping her in flowers while she slept, fashioning secret hiding places for her, and lighting fires on the coldest nights to keep her warm. Everything shattered, though, when her father committed high treason trying to free Burleigh from the king’s oppressive control. He was killed, and Vi was forced into hiding. When she’s given a chance to go back, she discovers Burleigh has run wild with grief. Vines and briars are crumbling the walls. Magic that once enriched the surrounding countryside has turned dark and deadly, twisting lush blooms into thorns, poisoning livestock and destroying crops. Burleigh’s very soul is crying out in pain. Vi would do anything to help, and soon she finds herself walking the same deadly path as her father all those years before. Vi must decide how far she’s willing to go to save her house—before her house destroys everything she’s ever known.
I really wanted to read A Light Between Worlds, but I actually ended up not finishing it. It just wasn’t for me in a lot of ways. Nevertheless, I’m a big fan of the author as a person and her new book sounded really interesting! I was more than willing to give it a shot. Trigger warnings: gaslighting, anxiety, emotional and physical abuse (non-graphic), mild body horror
Living houses. It seems like a concept that you should know off the bat is going to one of the coolest things ever. Yet, I was still surprised with just how fascinating it was it. Burleigh is like it’s own character. It has it’s own personality, it’s little quirks, and it’s own feelings. It was a big part of the story, in every way, and it was just really, really cool. I CONNECTED with a house. I felt it’s feelings. Ugh, I can’t get over that, it’s so cool!
The setting was fantastic. I prefer the indoors. But, I honestly wanted to frolic in the fields of this world. Everything was so lush and so pretty (even when things were falling apart). Everything was so vivid from the flowers to the thorns to the landscapes to the trees to the buildings. Everything was so amazingly gorgeous and written so incredibly well. It has its own distinct feel to it and it’s just really awesome.
I loved Violet. She’s stubborn and determined. She loves fiercely and she feels fiercely. She wants to do what’s right, but her motivation is changing. She’s changing and has changed. She’s trying to figure out what she wants, while also trying to save the things that she loves. She was a really great character.
I also really loved the side characters. The jerks were even fantastic in the way they were written. Though, I wish they were more involved somehow. I felt like they just lingered at the sidelines when they had so much more to offer. I would have liked more of them and to explore their characters more. Jed and Mira were such great parental figures. Frey was an excellent companion. And Wyn was so sweet and so full of pain.
I also think the romantic relationship could have been explored a bit more. It felt a bit rushed in places and I would have liked to delve deeper into their relationship. I think this ties into wanting more out of a certain character. I think if his story went deeper, the romantic relationship could have flourished some more. Still, it was freaking adorable. Both characters are absolutely sweet and I want the absolute best for them.
There’s an underlying current of pain (Weymouth writes anguish EXTREMELY well) throughout this entire book. I was expecting it. But, it kicked up a notch about halfway through the book and knocked me flat on my back. In a good way! Everything was moving along in a sweet way. There were complications and angst, but then it gets DARK. It’s almost completely sudden, but it works really, really well. The pacing is brilliant, and I loved how the dark themes and dark feelings and dark actions came about. It’s written really well.
There was a lot of things I loved about this book. Some things might have felt rushed and some things could have been fleshed out more, but I still really, really enjoyed it. It kind of makes me want to give The Light Between Worlds another try! I’m really looking forward to whatever Weymouth writes next, because her writing and her worlds have such a cool feel to them.
Thank you for reading!