September 25, 2022

This is not a book I would reach for — at least not one that I would have reached for.

I usually do not read fantasy novels and would prefer to not read a book that jumps between character perspectives. However, I was gifted an OwlCrate subscription from a family member and this was the book that came in it.

For those unfamiliar, OwlCrate is a monthly subscription box for books. The subscriber receives a copy of a book that is being released that month. It comes signed and has an exclusive cover to OwlCrate. Each month has a theme around the book.

Crown of Feathers was the pick for February 2019 and the theme was whimsical beasts. Curious about what else I received in my OwlCrate? Here is a link to my “book-stagram.”

Photo by Jaime Murdock

Crown of Feathers by Nicki Pau Preto begins with a world that is filled with people struggling after the war between the Phoenix Riders and the empire. The story jumps between three different character perspectives: those of Veronyka, Tristan and Sev. I personally do not like when authors choose to do this. Only a few novels I have read have been able to pull it off. For me, in order for that to be successful, I need to be interested in each of the different perspectives and their storylines, as well as have the feeling of the character coming to life.

All three of these characters are an “animage,” which means that they are able to communicate with animals through their minds while also being able to send different types of energy to them, which can sway the animal’s decisions. The goal of an animage is to bond with a phoenix and become a Phoenix Rider. All three of the characters struggle in their own way to achieve this goal.

My favourite character was Veronyka. She is compassionate, brave and driven. She uses her ability to help and would never force an animal to do anything it did not want to do. She is filled with hope throughout the book and believes that everything would work itself out. She is determined to form that future for herself and she believes nothing can prevent her. Although there were two other perspectives, I did not feel as connected to them as I did when reading through Veronyka.

I would rate this book a three out of five. I enjoyed it, but I would have enjoyed it even more if it stuck with one perspective. However, I found it to be quite original to have dwelt on phoenixes instead of the overly written mystical beast, the dragon.  

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