Three ‘Healing’ stars 🐼🐼🐼
‘Dark Intent’ is a novel which features a piece of the fantasy world Godkissed Continent the author has set a few other books in. It’s a story about a conflicted healer and her fate in a hostile environment which is not only scary but also surprisingly appreciative of her gifts.
I liked the setting. The idea with the takeover is very well done, and as someone of Bulgarian descent, it really hit home (Bulgaria was under Ottoman rule for over 5 centuries and many people were forced to abandon Christianity and become Muslim).
It is obvious Ms Endacott was very aware of the world and navigated the characters effortlessly in it. The world-building is well-scattered along the pages and I didn’t feel lost having not read the companion novels. The pacing however, is a bit off making the book easy to put down and difficult to pick up again.
The plot is overall okay, with the ending coming quite abruptly but realistically. ‘Dark Intent’ is primarily a character story, the action happening around the protagonist in order to prompt them to think or do something. I don’t usually mind this, as long as the characters are well-developed.
This is where I feel the book failed. The characters, despite Ms Endacott’s best efforts to provide them ample opportunities for growth, remained quite simple and one-dimensional. I wanted to know more about Symon for example – he had an interesting start then was completely overshadowed by the generic beefcake that was Ashtyn. I couldn’t engage with Freya as a lot of her actions had me internally screaming. Her character was inconsistent. I hope she grows more in future books.
The writing style is good. It’s easy to read. The ARC copy I got from NetGalley, however, was poorly formatted, making it very hard to read. There were some typos and repetitions which could have been cleaned in the proofreading stage.
Overall, it’s a good story which raises important questions about humanity and faith. I do not regret reading it as it made me think about my own history and experiences.
The Panda Meter
Writing Style 🐼🐼
An ARC of this book was kindly given to me by the publisher via NetGalley for a fair review. All views are my own.
All of my reviews are available on my Goodreads profile.
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