Book Review: The Storm Crow

Title: The Storm Crow
Series: (The ​Storm Crow #1)
Author:
Kalyn Josephson
Release Date:
July 7, 2019
Genre:
YA, Fantasy
Rating: ★★★★★

Synopsis

In the tropical kingdom of Rhodaire, magical, elemental Crows are part of every aspect of life…until the Illucian empire invades, destroying everything.

That terrible night has thrown Princess Anthia into a deep depression. Her sister Caliza is busy running the kingdom after their mother’s death, but all Thia can do is think of all she has lost.

But when Caliza is forced to agree to a marriage between Thia and the crown prince of Illucia, Thia is finally spurred into action. And after stumbling upon a hidden Crow egg in the rubble of a rookery, she and her sister devise a dangerous plan to hatch the egg in secret and get back what was taken from them.

Review

The Storm Crow was such a powerful and emotional read. It established a connection with Anthia right away with her hopes and dreams of becoming a crow rider along with a leader within her kingdom. I was crying 13 pages in when those hopes and dreams were stolen out from under her in a matter of minutes and her life was forever changed. A true testament to Josephson’s writing that I could feel so much for Thia so soon. It was a beautiful story crafted around loss and how not only how to move forward from it but how to fight back.

Thia’s depiction of depression is something I’ve seen debated in many reviews and all I want to say about it is that it felt like a reflection of my own. Have I ever lost everyone important to me and had my dreams taken away? No but I understood how hard it can be to even just get out of bed. That even taking one thing at a time can be overwhelming and while there might be good days that still doesn’t mean they’re easy.

The crows themselves were just utterly fascinating and the magic system surrounding them,  while not completely understood, seemed pretty straightforward. Until it wasn’t. Thia spent her whole life around crows but never really considered how the magic worked. What connects a Crow to a rider? How do crows hatch? What magic governs what makes a Storm Crow a Storm Crow? Josephson had it all perfectly planned out so we, like Thia, thought we knew just how it all worked but now we too have to rediscover how this magic system truly came to be and how it works which is going to be so much fun.
 
Thia has such amazing connections with people in her life. The close bond between her and Kiva was so supportive and understanding. Kiva was her shoulder to cry on and her kick in the butt when she needed it. Ericen, the crown prince of the kingdom who destroyed her and who Thia is engaged to, made me want to punch him in his smug ass face at first. I really enjoyed his witty banter with Thia though and really helped to pull her out of her depression. Despite the arrogant facade he puts on, he was caring and understanding when it came to Thia. I’m excited to see where his and their joint storyline goes in the next book. 

There was some romance that had the potential to be a love-triangle but actually wasn’t. Caylus was a sweet little cinnamon roll who I adored but I can’t really get behind shipping him with Thia. I don’t think he’s what she needs, the fire to stoke her and keep her moving forward. Still love him though and his little white kitten. 

I’m sad it took me so long to circle back to this book, but I’m glad I eventually did. I am also extremely glad though that I don’t have to wait too long for the second book though. I need to know what happens to Res the crow, if Thia will retake her kingdom and just where my snarky-ass potential for sweetness Ericen will end up once the chips fall. 

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