Working through my TBR Pile as I'm more or less caught up with my overdue review books from the review sites, I find this little gem. This is the name Mary Jo Putney writes under for her Young Adult fiction. Had I known this was YA, I would have removed this from my TBR Pile. I am so glad I was blissfully ignorant because I would have missed a great book. At first, I thought this book may be a mistake. I don't read historical fiction anymore. I certainly don't enjoy most YA books. This book contains elements that surprised me and I loved it.
The book starts out with the "polite" society showing their privileged bias of hating those with magic. Why? Because they covet it and can't use it. It's okay for the mistresses with the power of illusion to change their looks for a good fuck. It's okay for Lords to hire weather mages to fix the weather for their crops. But god forbid an aristocratic peer possessing magic and giving them an advantage. From a philosophical standpoint, I can completely see this scenario. If you can't buy the power and you have to be born with and work hard to make it work, these silver-spoon assholes can't abide by it. I can also see the flip side where the elite peer breed it in as differentiating power to rule over the peasants as we see in Ilona Andrew's Hidden Legacy series. I digress.
Shunning magic works in this book because it creates a massive conflict for pampered tomboy 16 year old Lady Victoria aka Tory. The baby of the family, she's never had to want for anything. When her powers develop, she is ostracized and sent to a special school, Lackland Abbey, for a "cure". Yeah, this is going downhill for me pretty quickly. I don't like these "conversion" schools and it makes my skin crawl. I stick with the book and I'm pleasantly surprised by the turn of events. Specifically, I didn't expect a plot twist that allows Tory to make a difference in the world. It is crazy and I love it. I'm completely hooked in and I want to know what happens. From there on, the book moves at a fast pace and I'm racing to see what happens. When the end occurs, I'm thrilled and immediately want to read the next book. To my delight, this is a completed trilogy because I waited so long to get to it. Sometimes it is nice when I have forgetful deferred gratification. I have immediately picked up the next two books to this trilogy and can't wait to read the rest of them.
This historical young adult book is recommended for readers who enjoy paranormal and a nicely timed plot twist.