Day 67: Crewel by Gennifer Albin
Summary From Goodreads:
Enter a tangled world of secrets and intrigue where a girl is in charge of other’s destinies, but not her own.
Sixteen-year-old Adelice Lewys has always been special. When her parents discover her gift—the ability to weave the very fabric of reality—they train her to hide it. For good reason, they don’t want her to become a Spinster — one of the elite, beautiful, and deadly women who determine what people eat, where they live, how many children they have, and even when they die.
Thrust into the opulent Western Coventry, Adelice will be tried, tested and tempted as she navigates the deadly politics at play behind its walls. Now caught in a web of lies and forbidden romance, she must unravel the sinister truth behind her own unspeakable power. Her world is hanging by a thread, and Adelice, alone, can decide to save it — or destroy it.
So finally I read Crewel. This book has been sitting on my shelf since around October/Early November after I bought it due to the positive reviews it received from some of my best bookish/bloggy/twitter friends. I started it almost immediately after it came in the mail but the first few chapters left me cold and frustrated with the main character, Adelice. Back to the present, today I decided I was done putting it off and gave Crewel a second shot, I’m (for the most part) glad I did.
The reason I was turned off on my initial read was that Adelice didn’t appeal to me. Not even a little bit. She seemed like a brat, like her emotions were all over the place (admittedly the beginning for her was a bit rough but still) but most of all that she seemed to fall for every cute guy she met. The last part was incredibly irritating and based on the summary mentioning a “forbidden romance” I was worried that insta-love was on its way or short of that some sort of love triangle. Unfortunately, and this is really my only problem with Crewel, I got both. The insta-love scale, previously mentioned in my review of Lancaster House, applies here and it is about a 6 out of 10. Then there’s the love triangle. I get it, people seem to love their “teams” and what not, but I could seriously go without ever reading another confounded love triangle and never regret it. This one was well done…but still, argh. So the romance elements of Crewel were the low-point for me which doesn’t surprise me given the beginning and the boy-crazy aspects of Adelice’s personality.
As I mentioned earlier, I was not a fan of Adelice on my first go. Now having read the book I can say I’m somewhere in the middle. I like her spunk and refusal to just hide in the background. She’s got backbone and some solid personality which is great to see in a female MC, or really in a female character in general. If it weren’t for the boy stuff I mentioned in the previous paragraph I think I’d be a full supporter. As far as the two guys in the love triangle go…they’re fine. I’m “team Jost” if I have to pick one, but not because I think he’s that amazing, they’re both just alright. Decent personalities, good senses of humor, Erik is the ego/funny guy, Jost is the tender/caring one, but neither made me go crazy to back them. Anyway.
The plot and world building are the strength of Crewel by far. I loved learning about the world Albin created and all of what the Spinsters were capable of. The different aspects of the weaving and the intricacies and detail involved were excellent. There was plenty of tension building up throughout the book, solid reveals that often were borderline stunning and some elements of the creation of the world that I can’t get into without spoiling things, but that were wonderful. The writing was just lovely, it made for a fast read and I breezed through Crewel in what seemed like no time at all. I couldn’t put it down and that’s always a good sign.
I definitely look forward to reading Altered, book two in the Crewel series, which I believe comes out late October of this year. Can you believe this was Albin’s debut?! So impressive! I enjoyed Crewel overall despite the romance irritations. The writing and the world that Albin created outweighed any negatives I could find by a wide margin. A pretty great read. Thank you as always for reading and come back tomorrow for Day 68!