SERIES: East, #2
GENRES/ SUBJECTS: Fantasy
From the author of the beloved high fantasy East, a thrilling tale of true love, magic, adventure, and revenge.
When Rose first met Charles, he was trapped in the form of a white bear. To rescue him, Rose traveled to the land that lay east of the sun and west of the moon to defeat the evil Troll Queen. Now Rose has found her happily-ever-after with Charles—until a sudden storm destroys his ship and he is presumed dead. But Rose doesn’t believe the shipwreck was an act of nature, nor does she believe Charles is truly dead. Something much more sinister is at work. With mysterious and unstoppable forces threatening the lives of the people she loves, Rose must once again set off on a perilous journey. And this time, the fate of the entire world is at stake.
West is the sequel to East (or North Child), a retelling of the Norwegian fairy tale, East of the Sun, West of the Moon. West continues the characters’ adventure after they get their happily ever after. It’s all the more interesting because Rose is a little older now, and is a wife and mother going out on a quest, something that I rarely get to see in fantasy adventures.
I’d say that, although the writing has the same ‘fairy tale -esque’, super simple, dreamy language feel of the first book, this one moves a lot faster into the action part of the story and feels faster paced. I read an eARC so I can’t be sure of the page counts, but West definitely feels shorter that East. Although it’s still beautifully written, and a wonderful adventure, I didn’t feel like West added terribly much to the story overall. It just didn’t capture the same magic that the first book had. I think fans of East will enjoy West, but I’m not sure it would hold up as well on its own.
Rose continues to be an amazing protagonist. She’s really grown from the self-absorbed, contrary child she sometimes seemed to be at the very beginning of her story. In this book, she kicks all different kinds of ass. I love that although Rose is outdoorsy and wild, and goes off on these epic adventure quests, Pattou doesn’t use this as an excuse to ‘not-like-other-girls’ and deride more feminine-coded interests. Although Rose wields a badass sword in this one, she also wins a fight with a sewing needle, and it’s ultimately her creativity and skill at weaving which uncovers Winn’s location. And the key! I won’t spoil it, but gee-whizz! Rose is definitely one of my favourite heroines.